Lewis claims European Championship glory
Being one of the newer of the major tournaments on the PDC calendar the European Championship has been fighting for credibility over the last six years but after the tournament that has just finished in Germany it has well and truly arrived as a highlight of the season.
There were contests in Mulheim that will be hard pushed to be beaten when it comes down to matches of the year and plenty that will live long in the memory. Simon Whitlock’s amazing comeback against Jamie Caven, Robert Thornton’s epic win over Raymond van Barneveld, Michael van Gerwen and Jelle Klaasen’s 180 fest and not to mention Adrian Lewis’ master class to win the final.
Lewis may have had a slow start in round one but was absolutely superb from there on in, not dipping below a three figure average in any of his four remaining games and not really looking like being beaten at any stage, even in his bout with MVG in the last four.
There had been some signs of a return to form for Jackpot with a run to the semis of the Gibraltar Darts Trophy and of course he has been to two European Championship finals before, but few expected him to be lifting the trophy come Sunday evening.
This really spices things up ahead of the Matchplay though with Lewis’ name suddenly being bandied about again in terms of a potential winner of the event when just a week ago it would not have been in most circles.
The two-time world champ comes into third favourite for the title at 8/1 with Bet Victor behind Phil Taylor at a best of 3/1 and MVG who remains favourite at 5/2 with Sky Bet. With two wins over the Dutchman in the last two weeks Lewis will not fear the world number two and if they were to meet in Blackpool there would be plenty backing the Englishman.
If Lewis can put in a strong showing at the Winter Gardens, with a run to the semi-finals at least then there will be no reason why the supposed duopoly of Taylor and van Gerwen cannot be turned into a triple threat contest for who is the greatest player on the planet. Lewis has the monkey of not winning anywhere but at the Ally Pally off his back and if he can forge on from here then the tussle at the top of the rankings looks set to be a mammoth one.
The Matchplay begins in Blackpool on July 20th and it is not one to be missed.