PDC world darts: Phil Taylor apologises to Van Barneveld

Phil Taylor confronts Raymond van Barneveld

Phil Taylor says he has apologised to Raymond van Barneveld after the altercation at the end of their PDC World Championship semi-final.

Taylor appeared agitated with his opponent following the 6-4 win.

"Raymond's a big lad and has a strong handshake. When he pulled me, it hurt me," said the 16-time world champion.

"I've contacted Raymond to apologise and hopefully we can put it behind us now. I reacted wrongly and I'm ashamed of that because I really like Raymond."

He added: "I'm gutted about what happened. It's upset a lot of people and it's also upset me.

"I'm very close to Raymond. He's a great competitor and it was something that happened in the heat of the moment."

Taylor faces Holland's Michael van Gerwen in Tuesday's final.

"Michael is extraordinary," Taylor, 52, said. "I've never seen a darts player like him.

"Even when I'm at my best, he's probably better than I am."

Van Gerwen, 23, has won his last two matches against Taylor, but will not be underestimating the challenge posed by his number-one ranked opponent.external-link

"I like playing him and he likes playing me so it should be a hard game," Van Gerwen said. "It's one for everyone to watch - it's going to be a cracking match.

"He'll be ready to play me. He wants his title back, I want my first title. We are both going to work very hard and it's going to be a cracking game. For me it's a dream come true."


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