Michael van Gerwen takes feisty dig at Phil Taylor before return of darts

Almighty Michael van Gerwen has decorated the return of darts today with a feisty dig at legend Phil Taylor.

World No.1 Van Gerwen is among 117 Tour card holders out of 128 who have signed up to play in the Professional Darts Corporation's Summer Series – five Players' Championship ranking events in as many days behind closed doors in Milton Keynes.

The Summer Series will be the first PDC event with players sharing the same oche after their innovative Home Tour, won by Nathan Aspinall, was streamed online from their living rooms.

It will be Van Gerwen's first competitive outing since March 12, but the four-month lay-off has done little to diminish MVG's appetite for a good spat.

Taylor, the 16-times world champion who retired in 2018, claimed during lockdown that he is still in Van Gerwen's head and that the Dutchman misses their rivalry.

But MVG, who won 26 of the pair's 62 professional contests, laughed: “I don’t use him as a bar because I think I have passed that bar!

“I think what Phil’s problem is, he misses playing at the highest level. In his mind, he still wants to be a pro and that’s what is, for him, the most annoying thing.

“If he was a bit younger he would still be a lovely play to play against. He is the greatest of all time.

“I like people talking about me, it’s funny. It means you are still an important guy. Like Phil Taylor. Every interview, for instance, he mentions my name. I love it. Makes me feel so important. Thanks, boys!

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    The Marshall Arena, attached to stadium:mk, will become darts' spiritual home for the next three weeks.

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