Van Barneveld started well though and took a 6-3 lead, then he lost no less than seven legs in a row and thus the match. So the question is how could this happen? "If I have an answer to that...," Van Barneveld opened to De Telegraaf.
Van Gerwen takes record-extending fifth title win at World Series Finals with convincing victory over weary Aspinall
"You are obviously facing intense matches, on Friday and Saturday nights. I am simply not awake and ready to play afternoon matches. That's why I play very poorly on the Pro Tour, where matches start at one o'clock in the afternoon. I might have thrown in a bit too long as well. Peter who just keeps sitting and sitting. He has been throwing badly the last few months and against me he just stands there, because he knows he has to play against a five-star (is he referring to the five-time world champion who is Van Barneveld, ed.). That just throws everything out today, that just goes absolutely nowhere."
For Van Barneveld, doubts began to set in halfway through the match. "Then still you get ahead 6-3 and get to start that leg, but it just didn't fall. After that it's just completely gone. He starts playing better, of course you will just see that. That I then miss six darts for a leg? You can't analyse that either. Sometimes you feel like you're being held by four men. That is the moment of the day and I still have that, I think. Maybe it is also a bit of fatigue. This morning I said goodbye to my children and grandchildren. Then you see joy and it's: 'come on daddy, come on grandpa'. I don't know. Maybe it's too much, it shows."
'Barney' had a restless run-up to this tournament anyway. After all, he marries his fiancée Julia on Tuesday in Cyprus and last week he travelled back and forth to this country to arrange the final details for the wedding. Because he made it to Sunday at the World Series of Darts Finals, he even has to fly to Larnaca via London on Monday. "But then this is so incredibly galling and I'm also saying very honestly: I would rather have lost last night and made it to Cyprus today, than have to go to Cyprus tomorrow via two flights. Because in the end you just have nothing at all. Done."
"Whether the switch is then immediately turned towards the wedding? I shouldn't think about that for a while yet," the 56-year-old Dutchman continued. "This will take a day to process. If I could have got on a plane today with my children and grandchildren, see so much happiness in them and know that the whole world is already in Cyprus and I am not... Then you think: wait a minute, maybe this is for a good cause. That grandpa or dad will do some fun things here in Amsterdam today. But they stayed very far away. The feeling? Failure. Of course."