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Jones books Lakeside debut as Loch retains WDF South Australian Classic title

The second WDF Gold-ranked event of 2024, the South Australian Classic, took place earlier today and it ended in dramatic fashion as Howard Jones beat Brandon Weening to secure a Lakeside debut.

Jones stuns field to become 12th confirmed WDF World Championship qualifier

Western Australia’s Howard Jones entered the South Australian Classic unseeded but he used every bit of his veteran savvy to come through the field and claim the Men’s title and a Lakeside debut in the process.

Having topped his group, Jones beat Jack Spencer, Lucas Brow, Carl Caton, Adam Leek and Harley Kemp in the knockout stages to book a final meeting with Brandon Weening.

Weening, who won a Bronze medal for Australia in the Men’s Singles at last year’s WDF World Cup, had looked very impressive in his path through the tournament. ‘The Python’ topped his group without dropping a leg and then smashed through Aaron Morrison, Scott Hallett and Peter Machin to reach the final.

Weening also started the final stronger, securing an early break to go 2-0 up. An 88 checkout on the bull saw Jones level it up at 2-2, only for Weening to then break again with a 15-darter to lead 4-2 in a race to seven.

Jones, who was two games away from qualifying for the PDC World Championship two years ago, then dug deep, winning four legs on the spin in 18, 18, 14 and 16 darts to lead 6-4.

Weening wouldn’t go down without a fight, pinning a 16-darter before a match-best 12-darter to force a last-leg decider and it was ‘The Python’ that got to a finish first. He was unable to convert though, missing three match darts. That gave Jones a shot at 88 and the experienced man didn’t miss out, pinning double 14 with his last dart in hand to seal a dramatic 7-6 victory.

South Australian Classic | Men’s Quarter-Finals

Peter Machin 5-4 Rob Modra

Brandon Weening 5-3 Scott Hallett

Harley Kemp 5-4 Michael Bajowski

Howard Jones 5-2 Adam Leek


Weening 6-1 Machin

Jones 6-3 Kemp


Jones 7-6 Weening

Loch retains title to build momentum for Lakeside debut

The 2024 Women’s South Australian Classic delivered the same final as the 2023 edition, with Australian internationals Amanda Loch and Joanne Hadley facing off. The final ended the same way as 2023 as well, with Loch coming out on top.

Coming in off a win over Desi Mercer the semi-finals, Loch started the final in dominant fashion, punishing missed doubles from Hadley to race into a 4-0 lead.

Hadley got on the board in the fifth leg, finding the outer ring with her 15th attempt of the match. Loch won the next leg to move within one of victory but then began suffering double trouble of her own, with Hadley halving the deficit to 5-3.

Having had two match darts already, Loch got another seven in the ninth leg and they were enough, with the English-born player sealing a 6-3 victory and a big haul of ranking points heading into her Lakeside debut later this year.

South Australian Classic | Women’s Quarter-Finals

Kym Mitchell 4-2 Janine Cassar

Joanne Hadley 4-3 Lyn Morrison

Desi Mercer 4-2 Kathleen Martin

Amanda Loch 4-2 Jules Taylor


Hadley 5-2 Mitchell

Loch 5-2 Mercer


Loch 6-3 Hadley

Kilroy and Spence share Youth titles

Much like Howard Jones in the Men’s tournament, Zane Kilroy claimed his first title on the WDF circuit as he won the Boys South Australian Classic. In the final, Victoria native Kilroy beat KJ Parker 3-1.

In the Girls Classic, New South Wales’ Gemma Spence claimed her seventh WDF Youth title. She dropped just one leg in the knockout rounds, sealing the title with a 3-0 win over Brianna Pickett.

Photos: Darts Australia

Tags: WDF Australia