Players Championship 13: Nathan Aspinall battles through injury to lift trophy

Aspinall won his first tournament in nearly two years and the Stockport man admitted he 'felt emotional' after a 'terrible six months'.

Nathan Aspinall displayed the courage of a champion as he battled through a wrist injury to win the Players Championship 13 title.

The 30-year-old - who had problems with his wrist since 2021 - won his first ranking title in two years with an 8-6 win over Matt Campbell in the final.

The injury Aspinall sustained meant he was in significant pain when throwing his darts and it forced him to have some time away from the sport in a bid to return, although there were fears he would never play again at the highest level.

However, Aspinall's determination was on a show in Barnsley and he was delighted to win a ranking title and take the £12,000 prize.

"I feel so emotional, I've had a terrible six months with so much going on. It was only a few weeks ago I was wondering if I would ever play at the same standard again," said Aspinall.

"I have put so much work in over the last few weeks to try and get back to the level I know I could play, and it's all come together today.

"Two years since I've won a tournament, you start to doubt yourself if you belong with the big boys. But over the last couple of weeks I have put the time in and I am reaping the rewards, and today I am the winner.

Nathan Aspinall, Darts, PDC World Championship

"It is still an issue, the tears are still there and you have to let them heal for maybe 12-18 months," Aspinall added.

"I got the good news that I might not require surgery and I am having an injection a week on Tuesday and that should help it.

"I know I am a Premier League player, a top eight in the world player, but I have had a lot of stuff going on.

"Now my mentality and my head is so clear, and I need to get back to where I was in 2019, winning tournaments, TV Tournaments and be back in that Premier League. I just need to keep trying my hardest, and put myself in that position."

Aspinall's journey to the final started with comfortable wins over Joe Murnan and Nathan Rafferty, before a huge average of 105.95 against Andy Boulton.

His high average continued with a 6-1 win against Scott Mitchell before defeating Rob Cross and Brendan Dolan 6-3 and 7-3, respectively, to reach the final.

The Players Championship returns on May 10-11 with events 14 and 15 taking place in Wigan.

2022 Players Championship 13

Last 16

Martin Lukeman 6-5 Jake Jones

Gabriel Clemens 6-2 John Henderson

Matt Campbell 6-4 Peter Hudson

Martijn Kleermaker 6-4 Jonny Clayton

Brendan Dolan 6-5 Adam Gawlas

Scott Waites 6-2 Mickey Mansell

Nathan Aspinall 6-1 Scott Mitchell

Rob Cross 6-0 Kim Huybrechts

Quarter-finals

Gabriel Clemens 6-4 Martin Lukeman

Matt Campbell 6-3 Martijn Kleermaker

Brendan Dolan 6-1 Scott Waites

Nathan Aspinall 6-3 Rob Cross

Semi-finals

Matt Campbell 7-2 Gabriel Clemens

Nathan Aspinall 7-3 Brendan Dolan

Final

Nathan Aspinall 8-6 Matt Campbell

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