Columnist Darryl Hearsch wraps up all the latest senior amateur golfing action from around the country, including the National Matchplay, Gold Coast Seniors and the Queensland and Darwin Senior championships.
2018 National Match Play title at Coolangatta Tweed Heads Golf Club
Thirty-two of Australia’s and New Zealand’s top senior golfers contested the inaugural CTHGC National Match play championship with Lester Peterson (Bardwell Park) winning the final over Warren (Snowy) Gorton (Hawks Nest) in a close fought final.
The event was played over six rounds across four days in superb weather on a beautifully manicured River course at Tweed Heads. Players are drawn into eight pools of four according to their national ranking for the first three rounds. After the pool rounds, players are then broken into four pools of eight based on their performance in the round robin pools.
As always, a few of the favourites suffered losses. Simon Dunstone upset number 2 seed, Brad Dowling 3/2 while Warren Gorton defeated number 7 seed Mike Peeck 1up. Kiwi international Michael Barltrop, seeded 5, was beaten by local favourite Phil Towle 3/1.
Pool 8 was possibly the craziest pool with all players on one win after two rounds and it came down to the last putt on the last green to decide the winner. Stephen Valentine sunk the last putt against Peter Duncan which meant Stephen finished as number one with Peter relegated to number 4 in the pool. Had Stephen missed that putt he would have finished third and Peter Duncan would have gone through in position one.
The leading pool of the top players that would compete for the top prize consisted of Lester Peterson, David Gleeson, Warren Colefax, Phil Towle, Brad Dowling, Warren Gorton, Ian Frost and Stephen Valentine.
After round four and five, the final would be between Warren Gorton and Lester Peterson with Stephen Valentine and Phil Towle fighting out for third and fourth place.
In the final, the result was in the balance until the 5th hole when Lester rattled off 3 straight birdies to take the lead. Warren had a couple of chances to peg back the lead but an errant putter on holes ten and eleven did not allow him back into the match.
Many new senior golfers contested this years match play and enjoyed the experience and from the interest generated this year the event will climb back to one of the premier events on the national calendar.
Many thanks from all the players to the organisers, Phil Towle and Darryl and Liz Hearsch, who ran the event for the first time after Golf Australia withdrew from the event in 2017. Also thanks to the event sponsors, which were Drummond Golf, Elkington Golf, Not Just Trophies and Schweppes Australia. With their kind donations, the event was a great success.
Kiwi International player Michael Barltrop wins the Gold Coast Seniors
The Gold Coast seniors attracted a strong field with many Kiwi players escaping the cold winter of New Zealand and experiencing sunny Gold Coast weather.
The event is played over three of the best Gold Coast golf courses. Day 1 was played over the Nicklaus designed Lakelands Golf Club, day 2 back to the Norman designed The Glades Golf Club and ending up on day 3 at the Thomson designed Links Hope Island Golf Club. All three courses were presented in magnificent condition for the three 8am shot gun starts, and many thanks to the Gold Coast District Golf Association for organising an outstanding event. Feedback from a majority of the players including the winner Michael Barltrop, was that the course set up on Links Hope Island needs to be looked at next year and should be set up along Golf Australia guidelines, rather than playing from the back plates with some par 3’s and 4’s unreachable for 95% of the field.
Kiwi Michael Barltrop (Royal Auckland) started round one with a magnificent 3 under par 69, although Michael was slightly disappointed with his finish as he dropped two shots to par in the last few holes at Lakelands. Chasing Michael was ex-Victorian Ian Frost (Indooropilly), who was three shots behind, after firing an even par round of 72. A talented group of New Zealand and Australian representative players were also in the mix after round 1. On one over par 73, were Brad Dowling, John Banting and Frank Borren. Day two saw the leader Michael Barltrop come back to the field with a five over par 77 with Brad Dowling improving his chances with another one over par 73. Brad and Barry Squires shared the low round at The Glades, both with 73. Into day 3 at Hope Island, the winner would come from the last groups of Barltrop, Dowling, Easterbrook and Francis, or the second last group Frost, Banting, Berne, and Weir. Michael Barltrop held onto his overnight two shot lead, and in the end won by 4 shots from Brad Dowling and John Banting from WA, took out third place.
Overall Gross scores
222 Michael Barltrop (69-77-76)
226 Brad Dowling (73-73-80)
228 John Banting (73-79-76)
230 Robbie Berne (77-75-78), Geoff Charnley (79-77-74)
232 Doug Francis (76-75-81), John Davey (76-80-76)
233 Colin Hallam (74-82-77)
234 Rowan Easterbrook (75-75-84) Tony Tren (78-80-76)
235 Robert Watson (77-80-76), Frank Borren (73-83-79), Stephen Weir (74-79-82)
Nett Winners in age groups
Geoff Charnley (55-59) 230 winner
Robbie Berne (55-59) 230 runner up on countback
John Davey (60-64) 232 winner
Tony Treen (60-64) 234 runner up
Colin Hallam (65-69) 233 winner
Phil Towle (65-69) 239 runner up
Rodney Barltrop (70+) 236 winner
Barry Squires (70+) 239 runner up
Greg Rhodes adds the Queensland Senior Amateur title to his impressive list of victories
On the final day of the 2018 Queensland Senior Amateur Championship Victorians Greg Rhodes and Doug Francis along with South Australian John Davey held the lead at various stages with Greg sealing the title on the very last hole when he made par to Doug making a bogey. Greg’s ambition of winning all state championships is now very close with only the Tasmania Seniors to go.
Rhodes, who started the final round one shot behind Davey and tied with Francis, carded a one-over 73 for an aggregate 221 for the 54-hole event. Francis shot a 74 while Davey was a stroke back in third place after closing with a 76. Rhodes, from the Coomealla GC on the Murray River, recovered well on the homeward nine after dropping three shots when he bogeyed the eighth and then made a double-bogey on the ninth hole. Francis (Metropolitan GC) made the turn in even par and took the lead with birdies on the 11th and 12th holes but then dropped a stroke on the tricky 13th hole and then made another birdie on the 14th where Rhodes also made birdie. So Rhodes took a one shot lead after hole 14 and held onto the lead until the 17th hole where Rhodes made a bogey 4 to Francis’ par 3. Standing on the 18th hole both players were again tied and it was not until Doug Francis made a bogey six to Greg Rhodes par 5 that the title would go to Greg Rhodes. Murwillumbah’s Warren Colefax (74-75-78) played consistently throughout the event to finish fourth, six shots behind the winner.
Overall Gross Scores
221 Greg Rhodes (75-73-73)
222 Doug Francis (77-71-74)
223 John Davey (73-74-76)
227 Warren Colefax (74-75-78)
229 David Gleeson (78-78-73)
230 Geoff Cranfield (78-77-75)
231 Tony Tren (82-73-76)
232 George Spillane (79-79-74), John Osborn (75-79-78) and David Klaffer (76-76-80)
Overall Nett Scores
217 David Gleeson (74-74-69)
221 Greg Rhodes (75-73-73)
221 Warren Colefax (72-73-76)
221 Michael Burke (74-71-76)
222 Tony Tren (79-70-73), Douglas Francis (77-71-74) and Joe Marumo (75-71-76)
Southwell and Ford claim Darwin Senior Open Amateur victories
The Darwin Open was played in ideal, if not a little warm conditions for the second and third rounds. The course was in fabulous condition, with the greens receptive and rolling very smoothly.
The winner, from post to post, was Dave Southwell, who shot a three round total of 235 (76-79-80). He finished 3 shots ahead of Tom Harold on 238 (82-79-77).
The women’s section was won by one shot by Sandy Ford, 254 (81-85-88) from Vicki Purser 255 (79- 93-83).
The field was not strong, but the tournament organisers are hoping for a much higher representation of interstate seniors in 2019. It’s a great time of year to travel to the Top End, for weather, racing, golf, fishing and just getting warm!
Darwin Report by Tom Harold
NEW SOUTH WALES
Karren’s maiden win in the Coffs Coast Men’s Senior Classic
This event is played over two courses, Coffs Harbour Golf Club and Bonville Golf Resort. Players were greeted with two vastly different days. Day 1 at Bonville Golf Resort was a warm sunny day but it quickly turned cold for the second round at Coffs Harbour with near freezing conditions for the morning tee times.
John Karren (Mona Vale) broke through to win his first senior event finishing four shots ahead of second placegetter Greg Ellis (Forster – Tuncurry).
Scratch winner John Karren 148
Scratch runner-up Greg Ellis 152
Scratch third Dale Tapper 153
Over 65’s Scratch winner Greg Stanford 157
Over 65’s Scratch runner-up Adam Charleston 162
Nett Winner Adam Rosewall 143
Nett Runner-up Noel Duffin 147
Hunt’s maiden victory in the Carnarvon Seniors
Thomas Hunt carded a fine three over par 75 to win the Carnarvon Seniors by four shots from Stephen Musgrave who recorded a seven over par 79.
A further one shot behind Musgrave was Richard Wood with 80 with Russell Kellam and Michael Brown posting 81. In the Nett event, John Walters carded a superb eight shots better than his handicap to win by five shots with a nett score of 64. Alan Fuller and Peter Mace both recorded a nett score of 69 finishing in second place.
Unbeatable Greg Rhodes and Helen Pascoe romp to another Senior Amateur title at Coomella
Around most courses Australian representative Greg Rhodes is hard to beat, but around his own track it’s a case of who will come second.
The Coomella Senior Amateur is played over 54 holes at Coomella Golf Club with Rhodes winning by nine shots over runner-up Chris Tatt (Bunniyong). A further six shots behind Chris in third place, was Geoffrey Charnley (Rossdale).
In the women’s fifty four hole event, Helen Pascoe (Bunniyong) took out the scratch stableford with 93 points over runner-up Aileen Buckley (Yarrawonga Mulwala) on 73 points. In the women’s stableford section it was a win to Cath Eddie (Coomella) on 104 points from runner-up Noelle Hartnett (Rossdale) on 103 points.
219 Greg Rhodes (72-72-75)
228 Chris Tatt (74-78-75)
234 Geoffrey Charnley (81-76-77)
235 Ross Percy (76-78-81) and Craig Tung (80-78-77)
238 Ian McCleary (79-82-77)
241 Greg Welsh (79-80-82)
Col Hallam takes Sanctuary Cove Men’s Senior in the PresCare QSOOM
Col Hallam (Redcliffe) returned to the winning dias in the Sanctuary Cove Men’s Senior, carding a neat one over par round of 71 to narrowly defeat Peter Hannah (Pelican Waters) who recorded a two over par 72.
In third place was popular Carbrook member Padge Singh carding 78. The men’s nett winner was Peter Hannah on 37 points from Padge Singh on 36 points.
In the women’s scratch event, it was a tie between Laurence Bargibant (Indooroopilly) and Josie Ryan (Headland) after they both posted a round of 87 with Laurence winning on a count back. Susan Painter (Nudgee) took out the women’s nett event with 36 points.