||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (May 2012)|
|Nickname||Over The Top|
10 February 1981 |
Swinton, Rotherham, England
|Darts||Dean Winstanley 23g|
|Walk-on music||Let's Get Rocked by Def Leppard|
|Organisation (see split in darts)|
|Current world ranking||37|
|BDO majors - best performances|
|World Ch'ship||Runner up: 2011|
|World Masters||Runner up: 2011|
|Zuiderduin Masters||Quarter-final: 2010, 2011|
|PDC premier events - best performances|
|World Ch'ship||Last 32: 2013|
|World Matchplay||Last 16: 2012|
|World Grand Prix||Last 32: 2012|
|Grand Slam||Semi-final: 2012|
|UK Open||Last 32: 2012|
|Other tournament wins|
He first took up darts as a two-year-old, stopped playing at the age of 12, and then started playing again when he was 22. He turned professional in 2008 and won his first event at the 2010 German Open.
Winstanley won the German Open, England Open, and Belgium Open in 2010. As a result of his performances on the BDO circuit, he qualified for the 2010 Winmau World Masters as the fourth seed. He defeated Stewart Rattray in the last 16 before losing to Martin McCloskey in the quarter-finals.
Winstanley also qualified for the 2011 World Championship as the third seed. In the first round, he survived two match darts against Martin Atkins before winning 3–2. He then defeated Robbie Green 4–1 in the second, Stephen Bunting 5–1 in the quarter-final and Jan Dekker 6–2 in the semi-finals, thus making him one of a small number of players to have reached the final at his first attempt. He was defeated 7–5 by Martin Adams in the final, having led 4–3 and 5–4. Later that year, Winstanley reached the final of the World Masters, where he was beaten 7–2 in sets by Scott Waites.
Winstanley qualified for the 2011 Grand Slam of Darts. He topped his group with victories over Ted Hankey, Ian White and Raymond van Barneveld. In the second round, he lost 10–9 to Mark Walsh having narrowly missed three match darts at 9–8 in front and a further two in the deciding leg.
It was announced at the end of the 2012 BDO World Championship that Winstanley had entered the rival PDC's 'Q School' He beat Matt Clark 6–1 on the third day to earn a PDC Pro Tour card after earlier beating Dave Ladley, Kevin Dowling, Mareno Michels and Simon Craven. In April, he earned a place in the European Tour Event 1 in Vienna by defeating Gary Butcher in the UK qualifier. He enjoyed wins over Paul Nicholson and Jim Walker in the event, before losing in the third round 3–6 to Richie Burnett. Winstanley also qualified for the second European Tour event, with a win over Mark Jones in the UK qualifier. He played Mark Walsh in the first round of the event in Berlin, coming back from 2–5 down to triumph 6–5. In round two Winstanley was on the other end of a final leg decider, losing to Michael Mansell.
Winstanley's first PDC major was the UK Open, where he lost to an in-form Terry Jenkins 3–9 in the last 32. Winstanley's results during his first 6 months on the tour were good enough to seal a place in the World Matchplay due to his ranking on the ProTour Order of Merit. He faced Gary Anderson in the first round and came back from 0–5 down to win 13–11 and set up a last 16 meeting with Ronnie Baxter. There, Winstanley hit nine 180s, but only 25% of his doubles as he bowed out of the tournament with an 8–13 defeat. His doubles continued to prove a weakness in his game as he missed two for the match in a 2–3 loss to Dave Chisnall in his debut performance in the World Grand Prix.
Winstanley went into the last round of matches at the Grand Slam of Darts knowing a win over Simon Whitlock would secure his place in the knockout stages. He produced a superb performance to win 5–1 with a 100.63 average, before seeing off Arron Monk 10–5 and Kevin Painter 16–12 to reach his first PDC major semi-final. He faced Michael van Gerwen who started the match exceptionally by leading 5–0 and 10–1 and Winstanley could never catch up as he lost 8–16.
His first year as a PDC player saw him finish 33rd on the ProTour Order of Merit after all 33 Players Championship, UK Open and European Tour Events had been played. This was enough to see him qualify for the World Championship as the third highest non-qualified player. The week before the tournament Winstanley practiced intensely with five-time world champion Raymond van Barneveld, playing two four to six hour sessions a day at the Ducthman's home with the players aiming to take out 5001 in 50 turns. Winstanley beat Mervyn King 3–2 in his debut, recovering from 1–2 down in sets and 0–2 in legs in the decider, also surviving one match dart to eventually win the final set 6–4. In his second round match, whilst trailing Vincent van der Voort 0–2 in sets and having won only one leg in the match, Winstanley hit his first televised nine-dart finish and the fifth in World Championship history. He eventually lost 2–4 having had darts at doubles to win both the fifth and sixth sets. Winstanley won the Best Newcomer at the annual PDC dinner in January 2013. His only quarter-final of 2013 came in May at the Players Championship One, where he lost 6–1 to Robert Thornton. Winstanley suffered a surprise 4–5 defeat to qualifier Dave Weston in the first round of the UK Open. Winstanley produced an encouraging 5–2 victory over Kim Huybrechts in his opening group game of the Grand Slam of Darts but followed it up with 5–1 and 5–3 defeats to Michael van Gerwen and Van der Voort to finish third and exit the tournament.
World Championship results
- 2013: 2nd Round (lost to Vincent van der Voort 2–4)
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