Darts news: In deciding-leg pairs victory against four-time winners the Netherlands and defending champions Wales, John Henderson sank the winning double; ‘The Highlander’ was brought to tears as he celebrated collecting his first PDC title.
On Sunday night, John Henderson had the darting day of his life, winning his first PDC title and inspiring Scotland to a second World Cup of Darts victory, which Mark Webster feels might restart Henderson’s career.
In the couples, ‘The Highlander’ was the picture of calmness throughout Finals Day in Jena, completing nerveless combo finishes to earn deciding-leg victories over four-time champions the Netherlands and reigning champions Wales.
In the semi-finals, the popular Scot defeated world champion and world No. 1 Gerwyn Price, before securing Scotland’s crucial 4-3 pairs triumph over Austria in the final, after the sixth seeds had fallen down 3-0.
After a tough 18 months on the board, Henderson – a World Grand Prix semi-finalist in 2017 – has slumped to 45th on the PDC Order of Merit, but this historic victory could prove to be a turning point.
Jonny Clayton’s rise was inspired by Wales’ World Cup triumph last year, with ‘The Ferret’ winning two individual televised titles in 2021, including the Premier League title, and Henderson will be trying to follow Clayton’s lead.
“I am ecstatic for John. “His career has taken a minor detour,” Webster said to Sky Sports.
“He hasn’t qualified for the World Championship yet, but maybe this will launch a fantastic conclusion to the year for him since he deserves to be on the big stage and has proven that he can win on it.”
“He’ll be feeling like a million bucks right now. It merely goes to show that he’s capable. That is perhaps what he lacks, a little faith, but he can do it on the big stage, and he has taken care of them in the big moments.”
Henderson has a history of taking important scalps on the big stage, having defeated Michael van Gerwen and Raymond van Barneveld on his way to the semi-finals four years ago in Dublin.
During his appearance as a Premier League challenger in Aberdeen in 2019, he also shared the spoils with Van Gerwen, and Mardle praised the 48-year-mental old’s toughness.
“John Henderson is going to be ecstatic. He’ll return home to his wife, Veronica, and most doubts soak it all in for a few days before thinking to himself, ‘Let’s get back on the practice board, rise up the ranks, demonstrate that class,'” Mardle said.
“For me, his clutch doubling today, especially that 64 finish that saw them win the Netherlands, was the shot.” That was everything: determination, courage, composure.
“What a group of people they are. You get the impression that the two of them are ecstatic for each other. That was incredible.”
Henderson was only called up after Gary Anderson’s withdrawal, and as a result, many people wrote off Scotland’s hopes of winning the World Cup.
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