Bullseye for Vic Classic

THE 13th annual Victoria Classic darts tournament in the Latrobe Valley was a bullseye at the weekend as more than 80 sharpshooters converged on the Morwell Italian Australian Club.

Singles tournaments were switched to a round robin this year, rather than elimination brackets, which drew a slew of competitors chasing the Harry Metcalfe memorial trophy.

Some 35 mixed doubles pairs and 80 singles entries across men’s and women’s divisions were up on last year’s numbers, which Darts Victoria president Andrew Coburg said may have come down to the format.

“We changed the format from some feedback we got from the locals, around the singles wanting to play a round robin format,” Coburg said.

“We had a lot of local singles entries this year, I think that was because of the format, so hopefully word gets out that we’ve gone to round robin and everyone has a chance to get through.”

Mark Taylor and Karen Richardson were the pick of the locals, both reaching their respective rounds of 16.

Taylor also had a strong showing in Saturday’s doubles competition with Lino Borg.

Formerly known as the Victorian Open, the men’s singles event was named after local player Dianne Berryman’s late father, Harry Metcalfe, a former state captain and administrator, in honour of his contribution to the sport in the region.

Coburg said coming to the Valley for a major event was a welcome change of pace.

“We like to get some of the darts tournaments away from our main three venues,” he said.

“Everyone seemed to enjoy playing the round robin, the venue was great – people down there are always willing to help out wherever they can – so we enjoy coming down.”