Michael van Gerwen defeats Raymond van Barneveld to win Auckland Darts Masters

Michael van Gerwen secured his first World Series title of the year as he beat Raymond van Barneveld 11-4 to win the Auckland Darts Masters.

In a scintillating display of darts at the Trusts Arena, Van Gerwen was at his imperious best as he beat Peter Wright and then compatriot Van Barneveld on his way to the trophy.

Dropping just seven legs across the two games – and 13 in the tournament – the world No 1 was back to his best after four televised tournaments without a win, including a shock opening-round defeat at the World Matchplay in Blackpool.

Van Gerwen quickly raced into a 6-1 lead, barely breaking a sweat, before Van Barneveld closed the gap to two legs.

That seemed to inspire Mighty Mike though, who went on to win five consecutive legs, which included a 156-finish on his way to the crown.

“I’m delighted to win this title for the first time,” Van Gerwen said.

“The standard of darts is getting better and better on this side of the world and it is important for the sport that it keeps growing.

“Sometimes it is nice to let everyone know who is boss.

“Now we head to Melbourne and it’s another chance for me to pick up a title, I feel good and ready to go.”

Van Barneveld was appearing in his second Auckland Darts Masters final after losing out in the decider to Adrian Lewis in 2015.

The five-time World Champion was aiming to win his first World Series of Darts event but ran into an inspired MVG in the final.

“He’s ruining everything for us, he keeps winning everything,” joked Van Barneveld after the match.

“I felt better in the final than I did in the semi but when Michael gets on a roll you can’t stop him”

Earlier in the evening, Van Gerwen dispatched Wright to book his place in the final, beating the Scot 10-3, while Van Barneveld secured his spot with a convincing 10-5 semi-final win over Simon Whitlock.

The World Series returns on August 10-12 in Melbourne at the Hisense Arena before the Australian tour concludes in Brisbane on August 17-19.

Join us for coverage of the World Grand Prix from Dublin, which will be held from September 30-October 6 at the Citywest Hotel in Dublin. The unique Double in, Double out format will be shown live and starts on Sunday, September 30 on Sky Sports Arena from 7pm.

Stick with us for news, views and interviews and expert analysis. Get all the latest at www.skysports.com/darts and join in the conversation @SkySportsDarts – don’t forget to use #LoveTheDarts.