A short chronological history of volleyball in Victoria.
It is intended that this information will be updated as new information comes to hand, please email VV with any corrections or additions. firstname.lastname@example.org
Volleyball has been played in Victoria since the late -1950’s. During those early days clubs such as Sisu, Renegades, Wallabies, Hawks, played in a competition at the Brighton YMCA.
The Victorian Amateur Volleyball Association was responsible to the Australian Volleyball Federation for the development of the sport within Victoria. During those early years, the main focus of the VAVA was to conduct the weekly metropolitan competitions and prepare representative teams to participate in interstate competitions and championships.
The Australian men’s volleyball team was dominated by Victorians during the early years.
Volleyball has been played in regional Victoria since the early 1960’s. During those early days, most competitions, like the founders of our great sport, were run by, or in conjunction with, the YMCA. Competitions were running at the Ballarat School of Mines and the YMCA’s of Bendigo, Geelong, Warrnambool and Latrobe Valley (1966).
1966, August An invitation was extended by the Victorian Amateur Volleyball Association (VAVA) to play in the first State-wide event at Monash University. Geelong and Bendigo accepted the invitation with Melbourne represented by Sisu. For Bendigo players at least, this was the first exposure to ‘international rules’, which prevented upward scoops with open hands, introduced an action called a ‘dig’ and seemed to penalise most overhead actions using the fingers as ‘double hits’! Over the next few years, the sport expanded through the YMCA movement with weekly competitions starting up in Ararat, Warrnambool and Latrobe Valley.
1968, March The Victorian Regional Council of YMCA’s proposed the first Victorian YMCA Championship in Warrnambool on 30/3/68 with an entry fee of $4.00 per team.
The sport continued to grow with additional regional associations affiliating with the Victorian Amateur Volleyball Association who provided the coaching and refereeing assistance needed to raise the standard of play.
1970 The YMCA Championships started to give way to the Victorian Country Championships conducted by VAVA affiliates with the first ever event held in Bendigo.
1973 Eric Hayman appointed President VAVA on 11/11/73.
The structure of the VAVA was clearly inadequate with little support provided to fledgling associations in return for the significant financial contribution these associations were making to the VAVA.
A major revamp of the VAVA constitution saw the establishment of the Victorian Country Volleyball Council and the Metropolitan Volleyball Council.
The MVC theoretically oversaw a number of metropolitan competitions, the major ones being Melbourne Volleyball Association competition based at University High School and the Eastern Metropolitan Volleyball competition based at Rusden Teachers College. Others existed at Croydon, Noble Park and Footscray. The MVC never functioned as envisaged partly due to so few metropolitan associations and VAVA continued to manage a ‘State League’ competition based at Brighton YMCA. Some regional associations have successfully competed in the State League competitions at various times.
1974 The VCVC was formally established. Each regional association was an independent body, many under the umbrella of their local YMCA, so the VCVC’s main responsibilities were the conduct of the annual Country Championships and maintenance of the regional player registration details.
The VCVC also conducted an Annual Conference for member associations. For the next 10-12 years, the Country Championships grew in stature with the inclusion of two divisions for open men and women and junior divisions for boys and girls. Representative teams successfully contested ‘Australian’ Country Championships between Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales on several occasions.
1974 First International match conducted in regional Victoria – Japan vs Australia at Wangaratta.
1975 1st Warrnambool Seaside Tournament – Men’s division won by Geelong, women’s by Bendigo
1975 Asian Championships conducted in Melbourne. Proposal to appoint a full-time Director of Coaching raised by Eric Hayman on May 6th. In June, Murray Mansfield was nominated to prepare the necessary proposal and submission to the State Government.
Tbc VAVA Board meetings conducted at the VOC building at Olympic Park, Swan St
1976 VAVA appointed Tomas Santamaria State Coaching Director – the first full time paid position in volleyball in Australia. Tomas did not take up his appointment until mid-1977 due to visa difficulties.
1977 Long serving member, Wolfgang Gollong, retired as VAVA Secrotary. Wolfgang continued on the VAVA Committee in other roles for a few years after this.
1981 VAVA appointed Mr. Bob Rowe Executive Director as the first full time paid administrator in volleyball in Australia. VAVA business was conducted from an office in a bungalow in his Ashburton backyard. VAVA Board meetings were conducted in the Ashburton library.
1981 Victorian Referee Commission established
1983 Australia’s first commercially produced volleyball TV series, the Lighting Spike Cup, conducted in Bendigo. The series ran for five years on BCV 8.
1985 In October, the VCVC voluntarily wound up the Council and handed the responsibility for the Country Championships back to VAVA, under the SOC
Since that time, the long weekend in June has continued to be the date of the major annual volleyball event for most regional associations, even though in 1986 the Junior Country Championships were wound-up in favour of state and national schools events. A number of regional associations have ceased to exist, as have a number of regional tournaments.
Tbc Regional leagues were created in both the Gippsland and Central-North-West regions, with Gippsland the only one to survive.
Tbc Junior State League divisions, East & West
Tbc State League moved to Springer’s Stadium
1980’s VV Beach competitions began
1986 Initiated State Conference to replace VCVC conference
1986 VAVA office moved to 44 Taylor St. Ashburton.
1987 VVI secured Victorian Health Promotion Foundation funding via a partnership with the Red Cross Blood Bank
1988 Ted Kalkhoven, one of Victoria’s and Australia’s greatest players and originally from Morwell tragically killed in a car accident on his way home from the Good Neighbour tournament in Canberra.
1991 August Eric Hayman retired as President of Volleyball Victoria Inc.
Mr. Howard Williams elected President.
MVA ceased to operate, Argods Fricsons Memorial Trust established.
1992 Mr Bob Rowe retired as ED’s and Mr Henry Daigle appointed.
1993 VVI Office moved to High St, Ashburton. Dr. Kevin O’Flaherty appointed President
1994 Ms. Jackie Murdoch appointed ED, resigned 1997.to take up an Olympic appointment
1995 First regional Academy of Sport established in Bendigo – Volleyball an initial sport
1996 Victorian State Cup Series established. VVL teams competed in regional tournaments for series points.
1997 World Series Beach competition conducted at Melbourne Tennis Centre during Moomba
1997 Mr. Tom Jones from Canada appointed ED, resigned 2000 to take up an Olympic appointment.
1998 VVI Office moved to St Kilda Rd. Senator Stephen Conroy elected President
2000 Mr. Terry Jones appointed ED, resigned in 2010
2000 Sydney Olympic Games – numerous Victorians played key roles in organization of Games.
2002 Following the experience gained by regional administrators working on the Sydney Olympics, a proposal to revamp the Victorian Country Championship was put to VVI, the Volleyball Victoria Country Championships Commission was formed to implement the recommendations of the review and take control of the event into the future.
2004 Dandenong announced as site of new State Volleyball Centre
2005 Deaflympics conducted in Melbourne, including Volleyball
2008 VV moves into State Volleyball Center Dandenong.
2010 Mr. Mark Gladman (Operations) and Mr. Mahamoud Fahour (Commercial) appointed as VVI senior management team.