Winstanley falls in UK Open first round

Dean Winstanley fell at the first hurdle at the UK Open.
Dean Winstanley fell at the first hurdle at the UK Open.

Dean Winstanley’s poor run of form continued as he became the first big name to fall in the PDC UK Open in Bolton.

The Conisbrough thrower suffered a 5-4 defeat to unknown thrower Dave Weston in the tournament affectionately known as the FA Cup of Darts.

Weston surged into a 3-0 lead but trouble with doubles allowed Winstanley to level in the race to five.

The two exchanged legs to take the match to a one leg shootout with Weston having the darts.

Winstanley missed a glorious opportunity to win the match, missing a 135 out on the wire of the bull.

And it paved the way for Weston to take the match on the next visit, checking out 112 for a famous victory.

The defeat is the latest blow to Winstanley who has struggled to replicate the form of his first year in the PDC.

The 32-year-old is still £2,100 in prize money away from making next month’s World Matchplay Championship, a figure which could worsen following the UK Open.

Other big names to fall on Thursday night included Justin Pipe, Vincent van der Voort and Colin Osborne.

Mexborough’s Darren Johnson beat Antonio Alcinas 5-3 in the preliminary round only to lose to Prakash Jiwa 5-2 in the first round stage.

There was better news for South Elmsall’s Mark Lawrence who reached Friday’s third round and has an excellent chance of progressing further.

Lorry driver Lawrence edged past Mensur Suljovic 5-4 in the first round before seeing off Peter Hudson by the same scoreline.

He will meet Terry Temple in the third round, the stage at which the top ranking PDC players enter.

Phil Taylor and James Wade entered the tournament on Thursday after missing many of the tour qualifying events and avoided upsets to reach the third round.

Also through is flamboyant former BDO ace Ted Hankey, who beat fellow former world champion John Part to reach the last 64.

The UK Open is known for its shocking results as qualifiers are given the opportunity to take to the big stage against the sport’s biggest names.