CALLUM Murphy is the new novice Australian champion in sheaf tossing.
The 17-year-old from Dunnstown competed in three shows over the past fortnight, including Warracknabeal, Rapanyup and Kieth in South Australia.
“I’ve been sheaf tossing for three or four years – it’s just in the family. My pa and my father both did it,” Murphy said.
In Kieth, Murphy threw a personal best of 10 and three quatre metres, which earned him the Novice Australian Champion title, and placing second in the open event.
In Rapanyup and Warracknabeal, he won the novice events again, and won his first handicapped event at Warracknabeal.
Sheaf tossing, a sport that originated in Scotland, is a popular event generally at shows where with a burlap bag packed with straw is thrown over a horizontal bar with a pitchfork.
Similar to pole-volting, the bar is raised until all but one player is left.
Murphy said he hadn’t been involved much before he started showing.
Now he competes at 10 to 12 events a year.
“I’ll definitely keep it up.”
He looks forward to competing at the Stawell show and then the Ballarat Agricultural Show over the coming weekends.
Murphy said there wasn’t a specific technique when it came to sheaf tossing.
“There are a lot of different styles out there – once I’ve got the swing down pat it’s fine.
“You’ve just got to find out what works for you.”
He is currently completing a potato farming apprenticeship.
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