Luke Littler made history by securing victory at the Bahrain Masters, triumphing over the formidable three-time world champion Michael van Gerwen. This remarkable feat marks Littler’s inaugural Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) title, achieved in his very first attempt.
The 16-year-old sensation, who recently captivated audiences with his memorable run to the final at the World Darts Championship, continued to ascend in the darts world. Making his mark on the World Series stage, Littler displayed exceptional prowess to claim his first professional men’s title.
This triumph served as a testament to Littler’s resilience, demonstrating that his outstanding performance at Ally Pally was no fluke. Despite facing an early defeat to Luke Humphries in January, Littler bounced back with a series of stellar performances on this memorable evening in Bahrain.
Luke Littler Triumphs: A Remarkable Journey to Bahrain Masters Glory at 16
After securing victories against Nathan Aspinall and Gerwyn Price on Friday evening, Luke Littler advanced to the final where he faced Dutch darts legend Michael van Gerwen. In a thrilling showdown that unfolded just two days before Littler’s 17th birthday, he emerged triumphant with an 8-5 win.
The final proved to be a closely contested affair, with both players holding their throws in a back-and-forth battle. Littler managed to break Van Gerwen’s resolve, establishing a 5-3 lead. Yet, the Dutch veteran responded promptly, staging a break of his own and leveling the match at 5-5. The situation echoed the dramatic comeback Luke Humphries executed against Littler in the World Darts final.
Undeterred, the young talent from Warrington displayed remarkable composure. He went on to secure the next three legs in dominant fashion, ultimately clinching the Bahrain Masters title against his opponent, who is 18 years his senior.
By clinching the trophy, Littler not only secured the prestigious Bahrain Masters title but also claimed the top prize of £20,000. His formidable opponent, Van Gerwen, takes home £10,000 as the runner-up to the teenage sensation.
How old is Luke Littler?
16- Advertisement -
The victory adorned Littler with a golden palm tree trophy, a symbol of his achievement, as he posed for photos alongside tournament organizers. Beyond the financial rewards, the British star also garnered crucial order of merit points contributing to his World Series total. These points hold significance as the top eight players with the most points at the end of the tour earn a coveted spot in the World Series Finals later this year in Amsterdam.
Celebrating his emphatic win, Littler punched the air in joy, marking the culmination of his journey to secure his first senior men’s title. Van Gerwen graciously congratulated him, and Littler, in a moment of humor, playfully pointed out someone in the crowd mimicking a throwing dart motion.
The night was already destined to be memorable for Littler, even without the victory, as he achieved a perfect nine-dart finish in the quarter-final clash against Nathan Aspinall. This accomplishment not only secured his win against Aspinall but also established Littler as the youngest-ever player to hit a televised nine-dart finish, surpassing Van Gerwen’s previous record. He now stands as only the second person in the history of the World Series to achieve this feat, following in the footsteps of the legendary Phil Taylor.
Young Gun Luke Littler’s Perfect Finish
Opting for the widely favored final three-dart finish of treble-20, treble-19, and double-12, Littler executed an astonishing feat that ignited celebrations among the crowd in Bahrain. The atmosphere was electrifying as even his competitor, Aspinall, joined in the applause, acknowledging Littler’s remarkable achievement. The teenager, seemingly taken aback by the jubilation, spread his arms before triumphantly punching the air.
Littler’s inclusion in the tour followed a brilliant World Championship campaign where he reached the final but succumbed to Luke Humphries. The £20,000 win in Bahrain added to his growing list of accolades, including a substantial £200,000 prize for his runner-up finish at Ally Pally.
In a surprising revelation, Littler shared that he hadn’t thrown a dart since the World Championship final. Despite the hiatus, he expressed satisfaction with his performance, stating, “I’m happy to win, I played well yesterday and I’ve played well again tonight.” Acknowledging the caliber of his opponent, Michael van Gerwen, Littler emphasized his joy in winning on his debut.
Mighty Mike, gracious in defeat, praised Littler for a “fantastic week” and acknowledged the young talent’s capabilities. However, he issued a warning to his new rival, stating, “Let him grow, let him do his thing. I’ll get him, don’t worry.”
Looking ahead, Littler is set to compete in the Dutch Masters later this month, followed by a spot in the Premier League lineup, showcasing his continued presence and impact in the world of professional darts.