As the 2024 edition of the PDC World Championship unfolds at the iconic Alexandra Palace, all eyes are once again on Michael van Gerwen.

The Dutch maestro has etched his name in darting history with three previous triumphs in the prestigious tournament in the last decade.

It has been four long years since he last got his hands on the lucrative Sid Waddell Trophy, but he is the joint-favourite for this year’s renewal alongside the in-form Luke Humphries in the darts betting.

So, as ‘Mighty Mike’ seeks to prove that he is still a force to be reckoned with by winning a fourth PDC World Championship, let’s take a closer look at his journey through his three previous successes.

2014: Breaking through the barrier

Having lost to the legendary Phil Taylor on his maiden final appearance in 2013, Van Gerwen returned to Alexandra Palace with a vengeance 12 months later.

Facing Peter Wright in the final, Mighty Mike displayed remarkable composure and skill to secure a 7-4 win over the experienced ‘Snakebite’.

This triumph signalled the beginning of Van Gerwen’s era of dominance, as he announced himself as a force to be reckoned with on the biggest stage in darts.

2017: Van Gerwen takes down another flying Scotsman

Three years later, Van Gerwen was faced with a titanic tussle with another Scotsman — this time dispatching Gary Anderson to win a second PDC World Championship crown.

Mighty Mike showcased his class in a high-quality encounter that saw him emerge victorious with a 7-3 win over Anderson — which further solidified his status as one of the world’s premier darts players.

The fact that his opponent was riding the crest of the wave and just one match away from a third consecutive title, after winning back-to-back World Championships in 2015 and 2016, respectively, made this win all the more impressive from Van Gerwen.

2019: Completing the hat-trick

Van Gerwen’s third PDC World Championship success came in 2019, further affirming his dominance in the sport.

He faced last year’s winner Michael Smith in the final and delivered yet another masterclass performance, securing a 7-3 win over ‘Bully Boy’ to complete a hat-trick of world titles.

This achievement underscored Van Gerwen’s ability to consistently perform at the highest level and solidified his legacy as one of the greatest players in the history of darts.

Mighty Mike has met several hurdles in his quest for that elusive fourth PDC World Championship, including losing two finals in the last four years.

The first of those disappointments was on the defence of his title in 2020, as Wright avenged their 2014 showdown with a 7-3 win.

The other was in the 2023 renewal, with Smith also making up for his 2019 defeat to the Dutchman by winning his maiden World Championship with a 7-4 win over Van Gerwen.

There is a lot of pressure mounting on Mighty Mike to end his drought, with the weight of expectation of being the favourite in the World Darts Championships 2023 odds on his shoulders.

Whether he adds another chapter to his storied World Championship history or faces yet more setbacks, Van Gerwen’s impact on the darting world remains undeniable.