Michael Smith dubs himself “Andy Murray of darts” after sealing world title

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Michael Smith compared himself to Andy Murray (Image: PA)
Michael Smith compared himself to Andy Murray (Image: PA)

Michael Smith has dubbed himself the ' Andy Murray of Darts' after sealing his maiden world title at the Alexandra Palace on Tuesday. Smith played out a final for the ages against Michael van Gerwen, which included the Englishman landing an incredible nine-dart finish moments after his opponent missed a single dart to record the same feat.

Smith's 7-4 victory came less than two months after being crowned Grand Slam of Darts champion in Wolverhampton. Prior to his two recent triumphs though, 'Bully Boy' had lost eight straight televised finals on the PDC Pro Tour.

Two of those attempts came in world finals, after the newly crowned world No. 1 player lost to Tuesday's opponent Van Gerwen in 2019, and last year's champion Peter Wright in 2022.

The Englishman's wait to become world champion is now over, and Smith has compared his road to victory to Murray, who experienced similar when making his rise in the world of tennis. He told Sky Sports : "I'm like the Andy Murray of darts!

"He has come through with these three amazing players in [Roger] Federer, [Rafael] Nadal and [Novak] Djokovic. He managed to get Queen's and then won the US Open, Wimbledon, and Wimbledon again and he had to work hard for that!

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Michael Smith dubs himself “Andy Murray of darts” after sealing world titleAndy Murray enjoyed a remarkable rise on the tennis court (AFP via Getty Images)

"I know he got to world No 1 and then unluckily for him he had his injuries, although it didn't cost him his career as he's still playing now. It's like what we've got now. Back in the day it was Phil Taylor and someone who pushed him.

"Barney (Raymond van Barneveld) was there, Adie (Adrian Lewis) pushed him for a bit, then Michael (van Gerwen) came along, then you've got Gary Anderson, Peter Wright and Gez (Gerwyn Price). You've got really unbelievable players now where anyone in the top-32 can win a TV title and it's not just Phil Taylor dominating the sport. The sport is wide open now, which is good."

Was Smith's title victory the greatest in World Championship history? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Michael Smith dubs himself “Andy Murray of darts” after sealing world titleMichael Smith put in a remarkable performance to become world champion (AFP via Getty Images)

Smith and Van Gerwen put on quite the show for the Ally Pally crowned, with their mesmerising efforts in leg three of the second set, which contained 17 out of 18 perfect darts between the two players, and of course Smith's nine-dart finish. Discussing the moment, 'Bully Boy' commented: "I think I was only the second person to do it [make a nine-darter in the final].

"For it to be in the perfect leg as well, with 17 perfect darts, was unreal - a great feeling. I took a step back [after Van Gerwen's miss] and tapped his hand to say unlucky, but all I was thinking about was that if I hit this then he knows he's in a game and I'm here to play. Luckily enough it went in and the rest was history."

Joshua Lees

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