Ronnie Baxter

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Ronnie Baxter
Personal information
Nickname The Rocket
Born (1961-02-05) 5 February 1961 (age 56)
Blackpool, Lancashire, England
Home town Blackpool, Lancashire
Darts information
Playing darts since 1980s
Laterality Right-handed
Walk-on music Don't Stop Me Now by Queen
Organisation (see split in darts)
BDO 1988–2001
PDC 2002–
BDO majors - best performances
World Ch'ship Runner-up: 1999, 2000
World Masters Runner-up: 1997
World Darts Trophy Semi-finals: 2006
Int. Darts League Last 16 group: 2006
Zuiderduin Masters Semi-finals: 2001
PDC premier events - best performances
World Ch'ship Quarter-finals: 2002, 2010
World Matchplay Runner-up: 1998
World Grand Prix Semi-finals: 2004
Grand Slam Last 16: 2010
Premier League 5th: 2006, 2010
Ch'ship League Winners group – 6th: 2012
Desert Classic Runner-up: 2002
European Ch'ship Quarter-finals: 2008, 2010
UK Open Semi-final: 2009
US Open/WSoD Quarter-finals: 2007, 2008
Semi-final: 2006
Players Ch'ship Finals Semi-finals: 2009
Other tournament wins
British Pentathlon 1997
Denmark Open 1996
Eastbourne Pro 2005, 2006
England GP of Darts Blackpool 2012
Finnish Open 1998
German Open 1995
Hampshire Open 2001
Irish Masters 2003
Isle of Man Open 1996, 1997, 2000
Shoalhaven Classic 2008, 2008
Swiss Open 1997
Vauxhall Autumn Open 2001
Welsh Open 1991, 1993
Windy City Open 2007
Winmau Darts Dazzler Batley 2009

Players Championships

Players Championship (BAR) 2010
Players Championship (BIR) 2012
Players Championship (CAN) 2011
Players Championship (GER) 2011
Players Championship (NED) 2004
Players Championship (IOW) 2005
Players Championship (VEG) 2009
Players Championship (WAL) 2008

UK Open Regionals/Qualifiers

Regional Final (IRL) 2003

Ronnie Baxter (born 5 February 1961 in Blackpool, Lancashire)[1] is a former World No. 1 English professional darts player. He uses the nickname The Rocket for his matches. Baxter is known for his fast robotic throwing action. He currently resides in his hometown Blackpool.


Baxter played on the North American circuit during the 1980s and when he participated in the British Darts Organisation he had a consistent record for reaching the final stages of their Open events. As well as winning the Welsh Open twice, German Open, Denmark, Swiss and Finnish Opens he also reached the final of the Opens in England, Wales, Finland, Denmark (twice) and the semi-finals of the Scottish Open four times, British Open three times, England Open twice and the British Classic in 2001.

He made his World Championship debut in 1991 - before the split in the game and lost in the second round to Jocky Wilson. A first round defeat in 1992 to Bob Anderson was followed by failure to qualify for the 1993 event. When the top players left the BDO to form the WDC after the 1993 World Championship, Baxter had risen in the rankings to be seeded number two for the 1994 World Championship, but he was beaten in the first round - this time by eventual champion John Part.

He missed out on the 1995 Championship, but then reached the quarter-finals for the first time in 1996 when he was beaten by Richie Burnett. Baxter was seeded seventh for the 1997 World Championship but lost in the second round to Mervyn King. However, later that year he reached his first major final at the 1997 Winmau World Masters, losing in the final to Graham Hunt. In 1998 he had again risen in the rankings to be seeded number two - but just as in 1994 he failed to live up his ranking and went out in the first round to Scotland's Peter Johnstone.

In 1999, he finally showed some of the form that saw him ranked second in the world by reaching the World Final for the first time. He beat Burnett, Kevin Painter, Roland Scholten and Andy Fordham before losing 5-6 in the final to Raymond van Barneveld. Still ranked second in the world, he went back to the final in 2000 but lost 0-6 to Ted Hankey in just 46 minutes - the quickest final in the tournament's history.

His last appearance at the Lakeside Country Club came in 2001, he beat Martin Adams in the second round but lost to Wayne Mardle in the quarter-final.


Baxter moved to the PDC in 2002, and showed early glimpses of the form he showed in the BDO. On his World Championship debut in 2002 he reached the quarter-finals.

However, that remains his best performance to date, and since his early days in the PDC he has struggled to reproduce his best form on a consistent basis. In 2006 and 2007, Baxter surprisingly exited in the first round.

Baxter did reach the final of 1998 World Matchplay whilst still a BDO player. The event was Baxter's first serious breakthrough tournament on television, with Baxter causing a big upset in coming from 6–9 down to defeat defending champion, Phil Taylor, 13–10 in the quarter finals. Baxter went on to reach the final, but lost 17–19 in an epic against Rod Harrington, despite Baxter having led for most of the match and having had 1 championship dart at double 20. Baxter also reached the final of the 2002 Las Vegas Desert Classic, losing to Phil Taylor. Baxter's high world ranking saw him qualify for the Premier League Darts in 2006, where he finished fifth. He has also won a regional final of the UK Open and a PDPA Players Championship, but despite a career which has shown great potential he is yet to clinch a major televised tournament success.

Baxter has thrown four competitive nine-dart finishes in a qualifying round or tournament, the latest being in the 2008 Desert Classic. However, none of them have been televised.

In the 2009 PDC World Darts Championship, Baxter defeated Finland's Marko Kantele in the first round. He then beat Denis Ovens in the second round. However, in one of the matches of the tournament, he lost to world number two Raymond van Barneveld in a sudden-death leg in the seventh and final set. After hitting the bull to throw first in the deciding leg, Baxter missed two darts at double eight to win the match.

After winning the warm-up Players Tournament in Vegas, Baxter was defeated in the first round of the 2009 Las Vegas Desert Classic by Jelle Klaasen (6-2) in July 2009.

In July 2009 Baxter competed in the World Matchplay at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool. As a native of the town, he received strong and vocal support. He narrowly defeated Jelle Klaasen and Alan Tabern in the first two rounds, before taking on James Wade in the quarter-finals. Wade was blown away by Baxter, who eventually won 16-10. However, the next day he was defeated 17-12 by Terry Jenkins in the semi-finals.

The World Grand Prix in Dublin in October 2009 saw Baxter's poor run in the competition continue as he was defeated by Steve Beaton in the opening round.

At the 2010 PDC World Darts Championship, Baxter saw off Haruki Muramatsu from Japan in round one, before beating Gary Anderson 4-0. Colin Lloyd, Baxter's third-round opponent, was swiftly despatched 4-1. He eventually lost 5-0 in the quarter-finals to van Barneveld. However, Baxter's performance was sufficient to lift him to sixth in the World Rankings, earning him automatic qualification into the 2010 Premier League.

Baxter was unfancied going into the tournament, but played surprisingly well, spending the majority of the season in the top four places of the table. However he narrowly missed out on a top-four spot, which would have earned him qualification for the semi-finals, following an 8-2 defeat to van Barneveld. Baxter ended the tournament in fifth place, level on points with the fourth-placed Mervyn King.

In June 2012, Baxter won the seventh Players Championship of the season, beating world number two and reigning world champion Adrian Lewis 6–3 in the final. It was Baxter's first ranking title for ten months.[2] He continued his form by reaching the final of the ninth Players Championship after beating Simon Whitlock in the quarter-finals and Lewis in the semis. He faced Dave Chisnall and lost 4–6.[3] These results ensured his place in the World Matchplay through the PDC ProTour Order of Merit,[4] as Baxter has dropped out of the top 16 in the world rankings and therefore lost his automatic entry into the major events.[2][5] He beat Chisnall in the first round, PDC newcomer Dean Winstanley in the second round and Justin Pipe in the quarter-final to reach his first hometown championship semi-final since 2009.[6] There he faced Phil Taylor and, despite rallying from 0–6 down to trail just 6–8, was beaten 10–17.[7] His good performance in the tournament gave him a boost in the Order of Merit, seeing him rise six places to world number 14. Baxter qualified from Group 3 of the Championship League with a 6–5 victory against Dave Chisnall.[8] He finished 6th in the Winners Group, as he won three of his seven league matches, missing out on the play-offs by way of leg difference.[9] After all 33 ProTour events of 2012 had been played, Baxter was 15th on the Order of Merit, which qualified him for the Players Championship Finals.[10] He edged out Paul Nicholson 6–5 in the first round,[11] but was then outplayed by Simon Whitlock in a 10–1 defeat, with the Australian averaging 110.[12]

Baxter fought back from 1–3 down in sets in the second round of the 2013 World Championship against Kevin Painter to level the match at 3–3. He won the first two legs of the deciding set to be one leg away from the last 16, however, Painter won four straight legs to send Baxter out.[13] Baxter's consistent play in the eight UK Open Qualifiers in the early part of 2013, where he was a losing quarter-finalist three times and a losing semi-finalist once, saw him placed ninth on the UK Open Order of Merit.[14] At the tournament he beat Ken MacNeil 9–8, Lee Palfreyman 9–6 and Jelle Klaasen 9–7 to face Raymond van Barneveld in the quarter-finals.[15] Baxter came from 0–3 to lead 7–4, before van Barneveld responded to move 9–8 ahead. Baxter forced a last leg decider and missed one dart for the match to allow the Dutchman in to hit double eight for the win.[16] Two successive first round losses in premier events followed at the European Championship (6–5 against Mervyn King) and the World Matchplay (10–1 against Andy Hamilton).[17][18] At the World Grand Prix Baxter beat Colin Lloyd 2–0 in sets before losing 3–0 to Simon Whitlock.[19]

Baxter was defeated 3–0 by newcomer Ricky Evans in the first round of the 2014 World Championship.[20] At the German Darts Championship he won four games to reach the semi-finals, where he lost 6–4 to Gary Anderson in the semi-finals.[21] Baxter lost 9–5 against Adrian Lewis in the third round of the UK Open.[22] He was knocked out in the first round of the three remaining major events he qualified for during the rest of 2014 and reached the quarter-finals of five Players Championship events, but could never advance beyond that stage.[23]

At the 2015 World Championship, Baxter won his first televised match since the 2013 World Grand Prix by eliminating Daryl Gurney 3–1.[24] He could only take out 17% of his doubles during his second round match with Robert Thornton in a 4–0 defeat.[25] Baxter lost 9–4 to Jan Dekker in the fourth round of the UK Open.[26] He failed to qualify for the World Matchplay this year ending a run of 17 straight appearances in the event.[27] Baxter's sole quarter-final appearance of 2015 was at the 11th Players Championship by defeating Phil Taylor 6–2, but he lost 6–3 to Dave Chisnall.[28] Baxter dropped out of the top 32 on the Order of Merit in 2015 which meant he failed to qualify for the 2016 World Championship. It was the first World Championship either PDC or BDO to not feature Baxter's name since 1995.[29]

Baxter's run of missed major events continued as he failed to qualify for the UK Open for the first time after he had played in every other edition since it started in 2003.[30] He did though reach the semi-finals of the eighth Players Championship by beating the likes of Kim Huybrechts and Simon Whitlock, but he lost 6–4 to Gerwyn Price.[31] This result ensured that he would play in one major event this year as it qualified him for the Players Championship Finals, where he was defeated 6–3 by Daryl Gurney in the first round.[32] Baxter was placed 73rd on the Order of Merit after 2017 World Championship and played in Q School in an attempt to win his spot back on tour.[33][34] After losing in the final round on the last day 5–0 to Kirk Shepherd, Baxter had done enough to secure a two-year Tour Card by finishing third on the Q School Order of Merit.[35]

World Championship performances[edit]



Career finals[edit]

BDO major finals: 3 (3 runners-up)[edit]

World Championship (0–2)
Winmau World Masters (0–1)
Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score[N 1]
Runner-up 1. 1997 Winmau World Masters Australia Graham Hunt 2–3 (s)
Runner-up 2. 1999 World Championship Netherlands Raymond van Barneveld 5–6 (s)
Runner-up 3. 2000 World Championship England Ted Hankey 0–6 (s)
  1. ^ (l) = score in legs, (s) = score in sets.

PDC major finals: 2 (2 runner-up)[edit]

Outcome No. Year Championship Opponent in the final Score[N 1]
Runner-up 1. 1998 World Matchplay England Rod Harrington 17–19 (l)
Runner-up 2. 2002 Las Vegas Desert Classic England Phil Taylor 0–3 (s)
  1. ^ (l) = score in legs, (s) = score in sets.

Performance timeline[edit]

Tournament 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
BDO World Championship DNQ DNQ DNQ 2R 1R DNQ 1R DNQ QF 2R 1R RU RU QF No longer a BDO Member
Winmau World Masters QF DNP QF DNP QF DNP RU QF 4R 5R 4R 5R No longer a BDO Member
PDC World Championship NYF Non-PDC QF 3R 4R 4R 1R 1R 2R 3R QF 2R 1R 2R 1R 2R DNQ DNQ
World Matchplay Not held DNP RU 1R SF 2R QF 1R SF SF QF QF 2R SF 2R 1R SF 1R 1R DNQ DNQ
World Grand Prix Not held DNP 2R 1R QF 1R SF 2R 2R 1R 1R 1R 1R 1R 1R 2R 1R DNQ DNQ
Las Vegas Desert Classic Not held RU RR QF 1R 1R DNQ DNQ 1R Not held
UK Open Not held 3R 5R 4R 5R 3R 5R SF 5R 4R 5R QF 3R 4R DNQ 4R
Premier League Darts Not held DNP 5th Did not play 5th Did not play
Grand Slam of Darts Not held RR DNQ DNQ 2R DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ DNQ
European Championship Not held QF 2R QF 2R 2R 1R DNQ DNQ DNQ
Championship League Not held RR RR RR RR RR RR Not held
Players Championship Finals Not held SF 2R 1R 1R 2R 1R 1R DNQ 1R
International Darts League Not held DNP RR RR Not held
World Darts Trophy Not held DNP SF RR Not held
Performance Table Legend
DNP Did not play at the event DNQ Did not qualify for the event NYF Not yet founded L# lost in the early rounds of the tournament
(WR = Wildcard round, RR = Round robin)
QF lost in the quarter-finals SF lost in the semi-finals RU lost in the final W won the tournament


  1. ^ "Biography". Ronnie Baxter. 1961-02-05. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  2. ^ a b "Brilliant Baxter's Birmingham Win". PDC. Retrieved 16 June 2012. 
  3. ^ "Chisnall Rockets To Crawley Treble". PDC. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  4. ^ "Betfair World Matchplay Field". PDC. Retrieved 8 July 2012. 
  5. ^ "2012 World Matchplay Qualifiers". Darts Database. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  6. ^ "2012 PDC World Championship Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 27 July 2012. 
  7. ^ "Betfair World Matchplay Semi-Finals". PDC. Retrieved 29 July 2012. 
  8. ^ "2012 Championship of Darts Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 1 November 2012. 
  9. ^ "Taylor Retains CLD Title In Style". PDC. Retrieved 1 November 2012. 
  10. ^ "Minehead Qualifiers Confirmed". PDC. Retrieved 25 November 2012. 
  11. ^ "Cash Converters PCF Day One". PDC. Retrieved 30 November 2012. 
  12. ^ "Cash Converters PCF Day Two". PDC. Retrieved 1 December 2012. 
  13. ^ "Ladbrokes WDC Day Nine". PDC. Retrieved 22 December 2012. 
  14. ^ "2013 UK Open Order Of Merit". PDC. Archived from the original on 9 June 2013. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  15. ^ "2013 UK Open Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  16. ^ "Speedy Services UK Open Quarter-Finals". PDC. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  17. ^ " Euro Champs - Day Two". PDC. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  18. ^ "BetVictor World Matchplay Night Three". PDC. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  19. ^ "2013 World Grand Prix Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 9 December 2013. 
  20. ^ "Ladbrokes World Championship Day Four". PDC. 16 December 2013. 
  21. ^ "2014 PDC German Darts Championship Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 7 December 2014. 
  22. ^ "Coral UK Open - Friday Evening". PDC. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  23. ^ "Ronnie Baxter 2014". Darts Database. Archived from the original on 8 December 2014. Retrieved 7 December 2014. 
  24. ^ "William Hill World Championship Day Three". PDC. Retrieved 20 December 2014. 
  25. ^ "William Hill World Championship Day Seven". PDC. Retrieved 27 December 2014. 
  26. ^ "2015 UK Open Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 5 December 2015. 
  27. ^ "Huge Weekend For Blackpool Hopefuls". PDC. Retrieved 11 July 2015. 
  28. ^ "Jubilant Chisnall Claims Barnsley Victory". PDC. Retrieved 5 December 2015. 
  29. ^ "Ronnie Baxter World Championship Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 5 December 2015. 
  30. ^ "Ronnie Baxter 2016". Darts Database. Archived from the original on 12 November 2016. Retrieved 12 November 2016. 
  31. ^ "Coventry Win Seals Price's Second Title". PDC. Retrieved 12 November 2016. 
  32. ^ "2016 Players Championship Finals Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 28 November 2016. 
  33. ^ "Order of Merit on 3 January 2017". PDC. Archived from the original on 3 January 2017. Retrieved 3 January 2017. 
  34. ^ "PDC Q-School 2017". PDPA. Retrieved 3 January 2017. 
  35. ^ "2017 PDC Qualifying School Day Four". PDC. Retrieved 22 January 2017. 

External links[edit]