The Daily Mirror Grand Slam of Darts ended in fittingly dramatic style last night as Scott Waites defeated James Wade 16-12 to claim the biggest prize of his career.
In a week that saw 15-times world champion Phil Taylor exit at the quarter-final stage and Ted Hankey once again get himself in trouble for a hand gesture at the ‘boisterous’ crowd, everything was set for a brilliant final. And it didn’t disappoint, as Waites fought back from 8-0 down to win in Wolverhampton.
Waites said: “It’s absolutely incredible. When I went 8-0 down I just wanted to get back into the game and make the score line respectable.
“But when I got closer to James I started to believe I could win it – but it’s not sunk in yet and probably won’t for some time. It feels so good to be called the Grand Slam of Darts champion.”
Despite hitting three 180s in the opening three legs, Waites found himself 3-0 down against the world No.2.
That deficit was extended even further and before long the joiner – who returns to work today – was 8-0 down and facing humiliation. However, Waites pulled it back to 8-5 before Wade reasserted himself with a 90 finish.
It wasn’t enough to stop Waites’ momentum though and he came through in convincing fashion – hitting his tenth 180 of the game in the final leg to leave a double eight finish for the win. He duly hit it to walk away with the £100,000 first prize.
Wade will have to pick himself up quickly following his dramatic defeat if he is to have any chance of lifting the Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship next month.
The Englishman is second favourite in the betting at 8/1 in the darts betting and could certainly be worth a flutter after his Grand Slam of Darts final berth.
Can Wade go one better at the Ladbrokes.com Grand Slam of Darts? Click here for the full betting market