BACK IN THE DAY WITH: Wes Newton: two-time major finalist who has now been without a Tour Card for several years

In this column, we always go back in time with a particular darter. Today we do so with Englishman Wes Newton.

Newton was born on Aug. 27, 1977, in Blackpool. In 2002, he made his debut at the PDC and barely a year later he got to play in his first major. At the UK Open he reached the last 32 before an eventual 8-6 defeat to Mark Thomson.

World Championship debut

It would be another two years until Newton managed to qualify for the PDC World Championship for the first time. On his debut, he was immediately stranded in his opening match after a 3-0 defeat to Gerry Convery. Later that year, he did impress at the Las Vegas Desert Classic. At this then major he reached the semifinals after victories against Mark Walsh and Ray Carver, among others. In those semifinals Phil Taylor proved to be too strong, 4-0.

Again in 2006 he went straight out in the opening round of the World Championship, but at the Las Vegas Desert Classic he reached the semifinals for the second year in a row. This time John Part was too strong 4-2. In subsequent years, Newton also went out quickly at the World Championship and he even disappeared from the top-32 of the world rankings.

In late 2010, however, Newton was at it again, winning two consecutive Players Championships becoming only the fifth player to do so at the time. As such, 'The Warrior' went to the World Championship full of confidence. At Alexandra Palace he was finally successful and after wins against Darin Young, Brendan Dolan and Mensur Suljovic he reached the quarter-finals for the first time. There he missed opportunities to eliminate Terry Jenkins and eventually lost 5-4.

First major final

Newton the appeeared to have kicked up a gear, as was evident at the UK Open. After wins against successively John Henderson, Michael van Gerwen, Raymond van Barneveld, Dave Chisnall and Denis Ovens, he stood in a major final for the first time. Sadly for Newton however, James Wade would take the win, 11-8.

Over the next few years, Newton proved to be a regular in the final stages of majors, reaching semi-finals at the Players Championship Finals and the World Grand Prix, among others. In 2012 he also played the final of the European Championship, but his second (and as it turned out, provisional last) major final did not turn out to be the right one either. He lost in the final 11-5 to Simon Whitlock.

At the World Championship, Newton reached the quarter-finals in both 2013 and 2014, but they turned out to be his last "big" results. In the years that followed, he fell into a form crisis and his 4-0 defeat in the second round against James Wade at the 2016 World Championship proved to be his last appearance at a major PDC tournament. A year later, he had dropped to outside the top-64 of the world rankings and Newton lost his Tour Card.


In the following years he tried regularly at Q-School, but was unable to recapture his Tour Card. Newton then tried his hand at the BDO. He qualified for the 2019 BDO World Championship, but in the Lakeside Country Club he went down 3-1 against Paul Hogan in the preliminary round.

Since then, we have heard little from Newton, who still plays mostly local tournaments. It remains to be seen whether we will see him attempt to win another Tour Card in the coming years.

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