MICHAEL VAN GERWEN and Gary Anderson shared the prestigious PDC Player of the Year title after being announced as joint winners at the 2016 PDC Annual Awards Dinner on Thursday night.
For the first time since the PDC first staged its Annual Awards ceremony at The Dorchester in 2007, two players shared the top honour in recognition of their achievements throughout the past 12 months.
Scottish star Anderson won the Betway Premier League title last May – defeating van Gerwen in the final – before retaining the sport’s biggest prize at the William Hill World Darts Championship, overcoming Adrian Lewis to secure back-to-back Alexandra Palace triumphs.
Van Gerwen, meanwhile, won an incredible 18 tournaments throughout 2015, with his victories in the Coral UK Open, BetVictor World Matchplay and SINGHA Beer Grand Slam of Darts completing his haul of the PDC’s major ranking titles.
The Dutchman also took victory in the Unibet Masters, retained the European Championship, won a second Cash Converters Players Championship Finals and followed up his third successive Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters win with victory in the World Series of Darts Finals.
Van Gerwen was also named as the PDPA Players’ Player of the Year after scooping 37 percent of the votes by his fellow players, and received the ProTour Player of the Year award to recognise his landslide dominance of the PDC’s non-televised ProTour during 2015.
Anderson, meanwhile, won the poll as PDC Fans’ Player of the Year to complete an awards double on the night, which also include a special introduction for the Scot to welcome his World Championship triumph.
World number eight Michael Smith was named as the PDC Young Player of the Year to reward his success in the past 12 months, as he won two European Tour events, reached his first major TV semi-final and sealed a top-ten place and a debut in the 2016 Betway Premier League.
Alan Norris’ impressive debut season on the PDC circuit, which included a Players Championship win, a run to the World Championship quarter-finals and two nine-dart legs has he rose 37th on the Order of Merit, saw him scoop the Best Newcomer Award.
Robert Thornton, meanwhile, received the Best Televised Performance award in recognition of his resilient, battling and career-defining display in the partypoker.com World Grand Prix final as he overcame van Gerwen 5-4 to claim another major title.
The glittering awards ceremony also saw the record total of 30 nine-dart finishes which were achieved during the 12-month period recognised with the presentation of commemorative gold and silver pin badges to the respective players.
A highlights show from the 2016 PDC Annual Awards Dinner will be screened on Sky Sports on January 28-29.
2016 PDC Annual Awards Dinner
Best ProTour Player: Michael van Gerwen
Televised Performance of the Year: Robert Thornton (partypoker.com World Grand Prix final v Michael van Gerwen)
James Wade (BetVictor World Matchplay semi-final v Phil Taylor)
Michael van Gerwen (Unibet European Championship final v Gary Anderson)
Gary Anderson (William Hill World Darts Championship semi-finals v Jelle Klaasen)
Best Newcomer: Alan Norris
Dimitri Van den Bergh
Jeffrey De Zwaan
PDC Fans’ Player of the Year: Gary Anderson
PDPA Players’ Player of the Year: Michael van Gerwen
PDC Young Player of the Year: Michael Smith
Benito van de Pas
PDC Player of the Year: Michael van Gerwen & Gary Anderson
Gold Pin Badges (Televised Nine-Darter): Phil Taylor, Dave Chisnall, Gary Anderson
Silver Pin Badges (Non-Televised Nine-Darter): Alan Norris (x2), Dyson Parody, Andrew Gilding, Simon Whitlock, Ian White (x2), Kyle Anderson, Nathan Derry, Jeffrey De Zwaan, Cristo Reyes (x2), Darren Johnson, Benito van de Pas, Matt Dicken, Dirk van Duijvenbode, Devon Petersen, James Wade, Peter Wright, Ian White, Max Hopp, Magnus Caris, Simon Preston, Kim Huybrechts, Jamie Lewis, Michael van Gerwen, Phil Taylor