Joe Cullen says he felt unbeatable heading in to the European Darts Matchplay final in Mannheim after claiming his first European Tour title on Sunday night.
Cullen sensationally defeated heavy favourite Michael van Gerwen 8-5 in Germany, earning his third ranking title in what he describes as the ‘biggest’ moment of his career.
Known as The Rockstar, Cullen looked every inch a man for the big stage as he averaged over 101 and hit a 170 checkout to cap a sensational performance and the £25,000 prize money to boot.
"To beat Michael in the final is amazing," underdog Cullen told the PDC after the match. "It's the biggest moment in my career, it's great.
"Michael is the consummate professional, he's so gracious in defeat and victory. Me and Michael are good friends and he congratulated me wholeheartedly.
"It was just one of those weekends. For us mere mortals, we're not Michael, the stage is where we all play really well or play really bad and Michael has set the standard.
"I've been threatening to win a tournament for a while and this weekend I believed I was going to win it. I genuinely believed it. I couldn't see that anyone could beat me."
MVG Reacts To Another Final Loss
For van Gerwen, a four-time European Tour winner in 2019, it was his second final defeat in the space of a week after losing out to Mensur Suljovic in the Austrian Darts Championship the previous Sunday.
However, he remains top of the darts outright betting markets as clear favourite to win the International Darts Open (10/11), the World Grand Prix (5/4) and of course the PDC World Championship in December (6/4).
In typically gracious mood, the defeated Dutchman congratulated Bradford native Cullen and made no excuses for the shock result.
"If you lose any final you can only blame yourself," said van Gerwen. "I missed a few chances but Joe played a phenomenal tournament.
"Normally he's very laconic but today he beat some phenomenal players, also myself in the final, and fair play to him. I have to take this on the chin and move forward."
Meanwhile, the PDC have confirmed the 2020 Unibet Premier League season will begin on February 6 at the new P&J Live arena in Aberdeen, beginning the 17-night tour of the UK, Ireland, Netherlands and Germany.
Indeed, the entire 2020 PDC calendar has been released, with over 150 days of darts to take place on the circuit next year which include a first visit for the PDC European Tour to Hungary.