STANDING between Luke Littler and the World Darts Championship trophy is a man for whom reaching this stage seemed almost certain.

Facing down Warrington’s Runcorn-born teenage darts sensation tomorrow evening will be Luke Humphries – a player for whom pretty much everything has gone right of late.

And judging by his display in his semi-final thrashing of Scott Williams this evening, he is peaking at just the right time and his run to the final means he will leave London as the world number one regardless of the result against the 16-year-old on Wednesday.

Just after Littler had beaten Rob Cross 6-2 to book his spot in the final, Humphries produced an even more dominant showing to dismantle his fellow Englishman 6-0.

The 28-year-old came into the tournament in the form of his life having scooped three major titles this year including the recent Players Championship, where he saw off Michael Van Gerwen in the final.

Humphries also beat Gerwyn Price to lift the World Grand Prix title in October before winning November’s Grand Slam of Darts tournament by beating Rob Cross in the final.

Such was his form, the Newbury-born thrower was installed as one of the pre-tournament favourites to lift the Sid Waddell Trophy, but his journey to this point has been far from smooth.

He has been on the verge of being knocked out twice – he was 3-1 down to Germany’s Ricardo Pietreczko in the third round before fighting back to win 4-3 before a pulsating clash with Joe Cullen in round four.

Having been 2-0 and 3-2 down in sets, “Cool Hand Luke” survived two match darts to level the match before emerging through a sudden-death leg to claim victory.

However, the later stages of the tournament have seen him in much more convincing form – he thrashed Dave Chisnall 5-1 in the quarter finals before an even more convincing display to whitewash Williams with a match average of more than 108.