Dennis Priestley
Birthday: 16. July 1950
Lives in: Mexborough, England
Born in: Mexborough, England
Nickname: The Menace
Darts: 15 g Winmau
Walk-On-Music: The Sweet (Hellraiser)
Organisation: PDC
Internet-Site: Dennis Priestley

Dennis Priestley is one of the longest playing darts players in the PDC. Originally a coal merchant by trade he started to play darts on a professional level when he was 40. 1989 he stood in the final of the News of the World Championship. 1990 he reached the semifinals of the Winmau World Masters and was beaten by Phil Taylor. 1991 he changed into the job as a newsagent and won in the same year the BDO World Championship beating Erik Bristow in the final. 1992 and 1993 he was successful in a lot of tournaments winning for example the World Masters in 1992.

In 1993 he was one of the founding members of the World Darts Council now PDC and he won the inaugural PDC World Championship. Four more times he reached the finale of this tournament and lost four times against Phil Taylor.
He stood three times in the finale of the World Matchplay as well but never won it. Priestley dominated the dart scene from 1991 to 1994 before Phil Taylor took over and even trumped him but it was Priestley who first threw an over 100 average.
Though there was a lot of rivalry between Priestley and Taylor they were close friends as well and in the years between 1994 to 2000 they shared all the price money. Over the years many of their matches were highlights. Priestley was one of the few players who always stood up against Taylors dominance. Only the last few years Priestley couldnīt keep up any longer.

In 2007 Priestley was diagnosed with prostata cancer but it looks he won that fight. He returned to the circuit in 2008 and played rather impressive.
Priestley has announced that with his 60. birthday in July 2010 heīll slowly withdraw from competitive darts and only will take part in tournaments when he feels like it and he hasn't to travel too far.

Picture with courtesy of Lawrence Lustig

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