2018 Matchplay Anyone?
The National Matchplay Series, SA Leg was held at the Victor Harbor Archery Club outdoor range at the Back Valley Road oval, Lower Inman Valley on the 13th and 14th January 2018. This is the fourth year the club has hosted the event and it always proves to be interesting both from the competition it inspires, the interstate archers who take up the challenge, to the weather that happens to make itself felt on the day!
In 2017 the first day of competition saw the heat soar to over 40 degrees however, this year there was a reversal with a period of almost wintery conditions of rain and strong, gusty winds, testing archers to the full. In Matchplay, no matter the weather ‘the show must go on’.
Matchplay attracts both local and interstate competitors and one who now seems to enjoy visiting this event on a regular basis is Alec Potts, one of the rare archers who shoot with both a Compound and Recurve bow. Danie Oosthuizen and son Danie-Louis Oosthuizen from Western Australia, made a great effort to attend the Matchplay and both put in a good performance.
Saturday was the compound archers day with 21 competitors [male and female] including members from VHAC. Pat Coghlan - doubling up as both Matchplay Event Manager and competitor, Graham Potts, Paul Bagnell and Callan Ineson with Rhiannon Mills and Sherry Gale the female representatives from VHAC. Being an elimination event, our archers tried their very best. Callan Ineson knocked out Alec Potts in the ¼ finals and was up against Pat Coghlan for the Bronze medal. Pat came out on top winning the Bronze leaving Callan the 4th position. In the gold medal final it was Andrew Kuchel from Great Southern Archers up against Danie Oosthuizen from Perth based Benara Bowmen. Andrew Kuchel won the men’s compound gold medal so at least it was a win for a South Australian archer. In the female compound division Sherry Gale won Bronze and Rhiannon Mills, short of one point, won the Silver medal. The gold medal belonged to Madelaine McSwain from Angel Archers, Victoria.
Sunday14th was Recurve day with a much smaller number of archers  competing. For the benefit of Recurve archers, the day was a great improvement on what the compound archers had to battle through. Adelaide Archery Club is very strong in shooting with Recurve bows and the majority of competitors from South Australia were from this club. Interstate archers came from various States including Canberra and Tasmania. In Matchplay, Recurve archery is conducted and scored in a very different way to that of the compound archery but still retains the elimination process. Alec Potts, shooting Recurve won the gold medal and Sarah Haywood, from Hobart Archers won gold in the female division. Shannon Blyth from the Adelaide Archery Club put up strong opposition against the men by just missing out on the 3rd place position by her compatriot [also from AAC] Dave Barnes. Nick Kyriazis from Sydney Olympic Archery won the silver.
All archers must be commended for their performance and hopefully those who travelled great distances to be here, found the experience both enjoyable and rewarding. Congratulations to all the winners! Hope to see you here again next year.
Despite the hurdles, the Matchplay event was a great success with Pat Coghlan, keeping things tight and running smoothly. Catering was again tackled by the Black family with Fred Brehin taking up the apron of BBQ chef and barista ‘extraordinaire’.
Special mention must be made in relation to the gold medal winners for both days, in that Graham Potts, owner of G & J Pictures in Victor Harbor, raced home after winners were announced and quickly set their winning target face in a frame to be included as part of their gold medal presentation. Well done to Graham and what a wonderful keepsake for the winning archers.
Get ready everyone, Matchplay 2019 should again prove interesting in all ways!
Press the link in picture above for more images in Image Gallery 2018 of the Matchplay event.