Skelton the champion-elect Harry Skelton moved into a commanding 10-winner lead in the jockeys' title race with just three days of the season left after completing a double at Ludlow.
Michael van Gerwen sends warning to Gerwyn Price: ‘He’s going to find it tough’
Michael van Gerwen has warned Gerwyn Price that he has a difficult year ahead as he tried to handle the pressure of being world number one for the first time.
Price won the World Championship in January and dethroned MVG at the top of the rankings as a result, claiming top spot for the first time in his remarkable career so far.
The Welshman is clearly a player who stands up under pressure, but Van Gerwen says that he will feel it more than ever as he sits atop the world rankings and Mighty Mike is planning to hunt him down as soon as possible.
‘My goal is simple this year. I need to try and get that number one spot back. It’s going to be tough, though,’ Van Gerwen told Ladbrokes.
‘I’ve got pressure on my shoulders. I’ll still be the man to beat. I need to make sure I play well because otherwise too many players are going to be able to say they’ve beaten Michael van Gerwen. I need to bring out my A game, starting this weekend.
‘I know for a fact Gerwyn Price is going to find it tough this year. Being number one and heading into tournament after tournament with that pressure on your shoulders, you need to be able to handle that and it’s not always that easy.
‘Gerwyn was a fair winner of the World Championships though and he did really well in the last two years so he deserves to be where he is right now.
‘Darts is a funny game though, because you can feel at your best but you can’t control what other players are going to do against you. For example, at the World Championships Dave Chisnall played a brilliant game against me. Is he going to be able to do that again? You never know. You just need to do all you can to make sure that kind of thing doesn’t happen too often to you.’
Van Gerwen is still searching for his best form after struggling to click into top gear over the last year.
Even without reaching his very best, MVG won the UK Open and the Players Championship last year, a wonderful season by most conventional standards, but he operates on a different level to almost every other player.
He returns to the UK Open on Friday looking to win it for a fourth time and he feels ready to do so.
‘You have to feel comfortable, you have to feel right and I’m in a good place right now,’ he said. ‘My last year wasn’t as good as I’d have expected but I did still manage a few big wins in tournaments so you have to just build on that.’
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