Suffolk’s Peter Wright reaches PDC World Darts Championship final

Peter Wright

Peter Wright - Credit: LAWRENCE LUSTIG

Suffolk’s Peter Wright reached the final of the PDC World Darts Championship for the first time at Alexandra Palace last night.

Wright, who lives in Lowestoft, did not compete in either world event between 1996 and 2009 but could now complete a remarkable career turnaround with victory on New Year’s Day. He is guaranteed a bumper pay day of at least £100,000 - and will take home double that if he wins tomorrow night.

“I’m pretty emotional right now as I’ve just realised what I’ve achieved,” said Wright, who ended with a 100.24 average. “I held myself together well throughout. I knew that I’ve been playing really well throughout the last 12 months, and I’ve managed to keep that form going into the biggest tournament in the game.”

Wright began with a 13-darter to break the throw and easily took the first set 3-1 before going two legs up in the second. His Australian opponent pulled that back to 2-2 but Wright checked out 61 on double-top to move into a 2-0 lead.

The Suffolk-based Scotsman also took the third set but Whitlock, who has appeared in the final of both forms of the World Championship, is made of stern stuff and fought back to claim the fourth set 3-1.

Wright, however, was in insatiable form and claimed the next two sets 3-1 and 3-0 to move within touching distance of the final.

When Whitlock was broken in the next leg, it looked as if the 43-year-old would cruise to the New Year’s Day showpiece but he began to show some nerves and poor scoring led to him surrendering a 2-1 lead.

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A seventh double-16 finish then saw Wright level things up but Whitlock held his nerve on double-top in the next to get a set back.

Wright faces a tough test in the final against Dutchman Michael van Gerwen who thrashed Adrian Lewis 6-0 in the second semi-final

“I knew if I gave Simon a sniff he would just pounce all over me. I didn’t want that,” Wright said.

“I’m going to go back, have a rest and party.”

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