Top senior amateur golfer Darryl Hearsch provides all the info you need to take part in 2022 National and State Senior Order of Merit events
2022 HOPEFULLY A GREAT YEAR AHEAD FOR AUSTRALIA’S SENIOR GOLFERS
2021 was another dismal year for senior golf in Australia with many states in lockdown, borders closed, events cancelled and yet we managed to get some events played even though the state championships were mostly closed events.
The Australian Order of merit was again cancelled in 2022 and luckily all the order of merits in each state went ahead, and all the champions were crowned. Our national championship that was going to be played at Glenelg was again not played due to the SA borders being closed to many states.
Hopefully if all things go well with covid and now that lockdowns at this stage seem to be a thing of the past due to our high vaccination rates in Australia, we may all gather again in October for the Australian Seniors at Launceston.
Again in 2022, there is a jam-packed calendar of events and courses available for Australia’s senior amateur golfers with some new events being added to the calendar. Many of Australia’s top courses are included providing Australian senior golfers with the enviable task of choosing just which great course and event they will play.
The Australian Senior Order of Merit Competition
Now entering its seventeenth year, the Golf Australia Senior Order of Merit (GA OOM) will commence again for the 2022 calendar year with a new format that better reflects players ability and form.
From 2022, the Men’s and Women’s Senior OOM will now be determined by totalling the points gained from the respective GA OOM events during the season, taking the player’s best 5 results and a ranking table based on averages will be calculated.
The players with the highest points total gained during the season will be the winners of the 2022 GA OOM.
For each event, it will be weighted according to historical data gathered from past events based on the quality of the field that entered the event in the past. The Australian Senior Amateur Championship attracts a minimum weighting of 9 while all state events are a minimum of 5. Non-state championships have a minimum weighting of 4.
The Golf Australia SOOM is primarily aimed at Australian based golfers who contest Australian events. It encourages participation among low-handicapped golfers and allows them to monitor their own development and form.
It is a competition that provides top-level golf for seniors who are ready to travel across the country to compete at the highest level. The 2022 calendar will include 19 events across every state and territory. As well as catering for the low handicapped golfers, nett events are also run in-conjunction with all events. It normally starts with the ACT championships in November 2022 but this event was cancelled in 2021 due to Covid-19. So the first event on the calendar will be the Tasmanian Seniors in February.
Changes to the Women’s Senior Order of Merit Competition from Golf Australia
Golf Australia announced that the age to qualify for its women’s senior events will reduce to 50 years.
This change is in line with events conducted by major international golf organisations including The R&A, USGA, Golf Canada, England Golf and Golf New Zealand.
It also assists the strength of senior women’s golf reflecting that of senior men’s golf.
Golf Australia’s general manager of events and operations Therese Magdulski said, “whilst the major catalyst to the change was to ensure we aligned to all other major countries in the world, we also know that the quality in men’s and women’s golf is not quite similar enough at this time to have the same age range that would provide suitable strengths in field for our national and state championships,” she said.
“Whilst 55 years and above in men’s senior golf provides the requisite strength, it doesn’t in women’s senior golf, hence we feel the lower age of 50 years is more suited to women’s senior golf at this point in time,” Magdulski said.
The change will be effective for events from 1 January 2022 and will apply to the Australian Women’s Senior Amateur, various state and territory amateurs, and the GA women’s senior Order of Merit national and state competitions.”
Note: it is at the discretion of each committee to determine its own age criteria for senior events at its club.
Who can play in Senior Order of Merit Events?
For the men, you need to be 55 years or older on the first day of the event being played. For the women, as of 1st January 2022, you need to be 50 years or older on the first day of the event. While some of the events have handicap restrictions, most events are open to all senior golfers and with a generous handicap limit. All entry forms contain this information.
The Australian Senior Amateur at Launceston (TAS), The National Masters, The Victorian Seniors and the NSW Senior Classic are popular events and a handicap ballot may be required. The best policy for these events is to enter and wait to see if a ballot is needed. As many state associations have joined up with Golf Australia (TAS, VIC, QLD, NT, SA) the 2022 calendar of all events is: https://www.golf.org.au/events#/customer/1090/schedule/2022/10643,10656,10669,10682,10695,10708,10721,11349
NSW and WA senior events are located at the state association sites.
How does the Senior Order of Merit work?
The Golf Australia web site has full details on the Senior Order of Merit. While each SOOM event stands alone with prizes awarded in scratch, age and handicap divisions, SOOM points are also awarded to all players after the tournament.
A table of SOOM positions and current points is available on the AUSOOM website (http://www.bluesoom.com/) and Golf Australia website. The GA OOM for 2021 was cancelled but the table still exists on the GA website. (https://www.dropbox.com/s/trfjjmyquhjxrai/GA%20National%20OOM%20%28Senior%29%20-%202022%20Terms.pdf?dl=0)
A list of documents explaining Golf Australia’s OOM conditions and selection criteria are located at https://www.golf.org.au/orderofmeritinfo/
When are the Senior Order of Merit ranking points used?
At the end of each SOOM year Golf Australia medals are awarded to those seniors in the top three positions in the overall scratch and the over 65 sections.
At different times during the year various national senior teams are selected using current and past rankings from the 2021 GA SOOM and 2022 GA SOOM as a basis for this selection. This may change for 2022, as the 2020 and 2021 GA SOOM was cancelled. Selection criteria for all senior teams is located at:
The Sanctuary Cove Trophy and Women’s Senior Trans-Tasman Cup
A 6-man and 6-women Australian Senior team is selected every second year to play a New Zealand team. The 6-man team play for the Sanctuary Cove Trophy whilst the women play for the Trans-Tasman Cup. This trophy will next be contested in October 2022 after the Australian Senior Championship in Launceston. Dates and venue are yet to be confirmed. The teams will be selected by the GA Senior Selection committee.
Golf Australia covers some of the costs incurred by the players.
The Asia Pacific Seniors Championship
A six-man team to represent Australia in the 2022 Asia Pacific Championships will be selected 8 weeks before the 2022 Asia Pacific Championships. The date and venue is to be confirmed. Based on previous championships it should be in October or November 2022.This is dependent on overseas travel restrictions in 2022 due to the pandemic.
Golf Australia covers the following costs: return economy airfare, official accommodation, entry fee, and official functions. Other small costs are at the expense of the player (i.e. breakfasts, lunches, etc)
Golf Australia vs the Australian Defence Force
A 12-person Golf Australia Senior team will be selected for a match against the Australian Defence Forces Golf Association. Previously, selection in the team was based on the previous year’s GA OOM and selection should occur at the end of January 2022.
Any senior who has represented in the previous Sanctuary Cove or Asia Pacific teams is ineligible but this will not apply for the 2022 team..
The selection criteria for 2022 are explained on the Golf Australia web site. In summary, the team will include two mid amateurs (male and female), the leading senior female and nine senior males. Golf Australia covers some of the costs incurred by the players. This year the event will be on March 21-22 at Rosebud GC.
How do I enter a National Ranking event?
Entry forms are always available on the AUSOOM website (www.bluesoom.com) and can also be found on Golf Australia and various state golf organisation’s web sites.
Although many of Australia’s best senior golfers will be competing you do not have to be a low marker to play and enjoy the competition and the friendships that will soon be made.
If you have thought about playing in one or more of these senior events, then why not make 2022 the year to put the plan into action.
What events are on in 2022?
The Golf Australia Senior 2022 calendar (QLD, VIC, SA, NT and TAS) can be found at: https://www.golf.org.au/events#/customer/1090/schedule/2022/10643,10656,10669,10682,10695,10708,10721,11349 and www.bluesoom.com
Golf NEW SOUTH WALES – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
Currently there is over 50 senior men’s events in the 2022 Golf NSW calendar. The Men’s Senior Order of Merit (SOOM) is open to male amateur golfers, aged 55 years and over, who hold a current Australian or overseas equivalent handicap. A selected number of nominated events make up the Men’s Senior Order of Merit. Each Men’s Senior Order of Merit event will have points allocated to participants, depending on their scratch and nett score and place in the event. There is also an over 65’s scratch and nett competition. The winner of the annual Men’s Senior Order of Merit will be the player who has accumulated the highest number of points from their best 14 results (points awarded) from the Men’s Senior Order of Merit listed events. The events are run by individual host Clubs. The NSW 2022 calendar can be found at: https://www.golfgenius.com/ggid/wxhrpu/customerdirectory/5886879086491515594?season_id=6642833820552837717
Golf VICTORIA – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
Doug Bachli Trophy (Gross)
The player that accrues the highest total of points for stroke performances in their best 12 senior events throughout the course of the year will win the Doug Bachli Trophy.
Paul Lulofs Trophy (Nett)
The player that accrues the highest total of points for nett performances in their best 12 senior events throughout the course of the year will win the Paul Lulofs Trophy.
The Victoria 2022 calendar can be found at: https://www.golf.org.au/events#/customer/1090/schedule/2022/10669
Wooster and Naismith reign supreme at the 2021 Victorian Senior Amateur
Sue Wooster and Kevin Naismith have dominated the Victorian Senior Amateur to take out their respective titles. Played at Horsham Golf Club for the second straight year, players dealt with tough winds throughout the three-day event.
Wooster, who plays her golf at The National Golf Club, was in control from the first round as scores of 74, 77 and 73 saw her finish ten shots clear of Helen Pascoe.
“It is great to win this for the first time”, Wooster said. “The course set up was fantastic. The greens were slick, and the pins were challenging but fair and I really enjoyed the course”.
Pascoe finished with a 234 total, six shots clear of Jacqui Morgan and Bridget Hill who tied for third.
After losing in a playoff in 2020, Kevin Naismith went one better with three fantastic rounds of 72,74 and 72. Naismith, who hails from Southern Golf Club, was thrilled to win the event for the first time. “I am honoured to win this title after coming so close last year,” Naismith said. “The conditions were really tough out there this week. Every shot was a grind. Nothing felt easy.”
Greg Rhodes and Geoff Walker were consistent all tournament with rounds of 74,76,76 and 72,76 and 78 respectively to finish in a tie for second.
In the women’s overall net, Horsham’s own Sharon Howden was the victor with net scores of 72,76 and 70 to finish three clear of fellow Horsham member Julie Neumann and Rossdale’s Cheryl Disher.
The men’s overall net was won by Glenn Crocker with his rounds of 73, 67 and 71.
Crocker, who made the journey down from Young Golf Club in NSW, finished four shots clear of Trafalgar’s Jeff Hasthorpe.
Sue Wooster (55-59) and Helen Pascoe (65-69) were victorious in their respective age categories whilst Bridget Hill (60-64) and June Tickell (70+) were crowned champions of their divisions.
In the men’s age categories, Naismith was the victor in the 55-59 years of age division whilst Greg Rhodes (60-64), Gordon Claney (65-69) and Chris Tatt (70+) were the best across their respective divisions.
Golf Australia would like to sincerely thank Horsham Golf Club for their assistance in delivering such a fantastic event.
Victorian Senior Amateur report from Golf Australia
Golf SOUTH AUSTRALIA – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
The South Australian SOOM events are open to all male golfers who are aged 55 years or above as at 8th February 2022 and who hold an official Golf Australia handicap (some handicap limits may apply). The SA SOOM events are stroke rounds divided into (over 55 years) and super seniors (over 65 years). The winner of both the over 55 years and over 65 years will be determined by aggregate points awarded over thirteen events. A player’s best eight events from 14 events count towards the SA SOOM trophies. A points loading applies depending on if the event is a one, two or three round event. A minimum of eight events must be contested to be eligible to win either SA SOOM. All events have gross and nett winners and other prizes (depending on event) with a strong emphasis on the enjoyment of golf with fellow senior players. A nett stroke SA SOOM trophy will also be awarded. This to be awarded to the player accumulating the most points over the seasons thirteen events. The nett event will have a handicap limit of GA 24.4.
The SA 2022 calendar can be found at: https://www.golf.org.au/events#/customer/1090/schedule/2022/10695
Golf QUEENSLAND – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
The Queensland Senior Order of Merit will recognise performances for both scratch and nett scoring. A player’s final Queensland Senior Order of Merit points total for both scratch and nett will comprise all points accrued from the best eight performances in designated events during that calendar year. Once a player plays more than eight designated events, his worst performance (e.g. lowest points total from a designated event) drops off for each additional event he plays. The player that accrues the highest total of points for scratch performances in the designated events over the calendar year will win the Queensland Senior Order of Merit Trophy and shall also receive an individual trophy. The player that accrues the highest total of points for nett performances in designated events over the calendar year will win the Queensland Senior Order of Merit Handicap Trophy and shall also receive an individual trophy.
The 65 and over player that accrues the highest total of points for scratch performances in designated events over the calendar year will win the Queensland Senior Order of Merit 65 and over trophy and shall also receive an individual trophy.
The QLD 2022 calendar can be found at: https://www.golf.org.au/events#/customer/1090/schedule/2022/10643
Golf WESTERN AUSTRALIA – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
Thirteen events are included in the Senior Men’s Ranking System and players will receive ranking points for gross finishing positions in these events. Points allocated for each event will vary according to the category of the event. Most events are category three. The Western Australia Seniors and The Hartfield Seniors both are classified as category one events, which attract higher ranking points. Ranking points will only be allocated to the section of the event that is played as a stroke play competition.
The WA 2022 calendar can be found at: http://www.golfwa.org.au/cms/events/fixtures/
Golf TASMANIA – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
The Tasmania SOOM has limited events for seniors to play in and last year there was 6 events that men and women could play in. Check via the link below to the events that are scheduled for 2022.
Golf ACT – Men’s Senior Order of Merit
The ACT SOOM started in 2021 and most of the events are played in conjunction with vardon-type events. In 2021, seven SOOM events were contested.
Check via the link below to the events that are scheduled for 2022.
COMING SENIOR EVENTS
February 02-04 Men’s Tasmanian Seniors – Mowbray GC (TAS)*
February 07 Stonecutters Ridge Seniors (NSW)
February 07 South Australian SOOM Blackwood (SA)
February 10-12 Men’s New Zealand Seniors – Paraparaumu GC (NZ)
February 13-16 Women’s New Zealand Seniors – Otago GC (NZ)
February 14 Links Hope Island QSOOM (QLD)
February 15-16 Kooringal Senior Amateur (M&W – VIC)
February 21 South Australian SOOM South Lakes (SA)
February 21 Redcliffe QSOOM (QLD)
February 21 Concord Seniors (NSW)
February 21-22 Cranbourne Senior Amateur (M&W – VIC)
February 28 Arundel Hills QSOOM (QLD)
February 28 Castle Hill Seniors (NSW)
March 01 Pennant Hills Seniors (NSW)
March 03-04 Eureka Senior Amateur (M&W – VIC)
March 07 South Australian SOOM Mt Osmond (SA)
March 07 NSW Senior Foursomes Medal (M&W NSW)
March 08 Mt. Lawley Men’s Senior Open (WA)
March 08-10 NSW Senior Amateur (M&W NSW)*
March 09-10 Alpine Senior Masters (M&W – VIC)
March 11 Oxley QSOOM (QLD)
March 14 Royal Sydney Invitational (NSW)
March 17 Manly Seniors (NSW)
March 17-18 VIC vs ADFGA Match ( VIC)
March 21 South Australian SOOM Tea Tree Gully (SA)
March 21 Southport QSOOM (QLD)
March 21-22 Golf Australia vs ADF – (Rosebud GC- VIC)
March 23 Sun City Senior Amateur Open (WA)
March 24-25 Hartfield Senior Open (WA) *
March 25 Lang Lang Senior Amateur (M&W – VIC)
March 26- 27 Laidley Mens Classic QSOOM (QLD)
March 28 South Australian SOOM Thaxted (SA)
March 28 Royal Queensland QSOOM (QLD)
March 29-31 The National Senior Masters (M-SOOM -VIC)*
* events in the Australian Senior Men’s Order of Merit 2022
(M&W) Men and Women’s fields