LONDON // Phil Taylor won the PDC World Championship final with a 7-3 victory over Simon Whitlock at Alexandra Palace. Taylor trailed the Australian by two sets to one but produced a stunning run of form to seal his 15th world title. The No 1 opened with a 180 and although Whitlock won the leg, the unseeded 40-year-old lost the first set. However, Whitlock surprised Taylor, winning the next two sets to take a surprise 2-1 lead. That was as good as it got for the semi-final conqueror of Raymond van Barneveld, as Taylor took control of the contest. He won the fourth set, then the fifth with a checkout of 161, before winning the next two to establish a commanding 5-2 lead. Whitlock won the first leg of the sixth set, lost the next two but squared matters - and a 180 put pressure on Taylor, but 'The Power' checked out on 80 to move within a set of victory. The Australian checked the slide in the ninth set, winning the first and third legs before closing it out with double one after both players had ended in the 'madhouse' after failing to nail their checkouts. However, the contest was over in the next set, with Taylor appropriately wrapping up the victory with a 131 checkout. Taylor, who was outscored in 180s but hit finishes of 170, 167 and 161 in his run of five successive winning sets, claimed a £200,000 (Dh1.18m) winners' cheque - the highest ever paid out in darts' history. He said: "I think that's one of the greatest finals, no disrespect to the others. "It was hard work but this is everything I've ever dreamed of and practised for. "When we went for the break Simon said 'I'm coming after you, I'm not going to give in. you know' - and I said 'I know'. "It's been absolutely brilliant and I'm so chuffed."
* PA Sport