Waikato pair wins at Paraparaumu

Photo from left Pam Johnston, Helen Green, Murray Armstrong (Paraparaumu Golf Chairman), Janet Myers, Heather Gifkins

Photo from left Pam Johnston, Helen Green, Murray Armstrong (Paraparaumu Golf Chairman), Janet Myers, Heather Gifkins

The Waikato pairing of Janet Myers (Cambridge) partnered with Helen Green (Hamilton) have won the 83rd New Zealand Golf Women’s Autumn Foursomes.

Played last month on the iconic Paraparaumu Beach Golf Course that has hosted a record 12 New Zealand Opens including the 2002 tournament with Tiger Woods in the field, Myers and Green were the only pair undefeated after 3 days foursomes match play.

Drawn randomly in the 64 pair grid, Green and Myers faced two local pairs in their opening matches on Tuesday 26 March. First victims were Sue Norris and Jenny Thomas, a match they won comfortably 5 and 4, before facing Yvonne Jackson and Mary Wilson. They needed all 18-holes to win that match, 2-up before advancing onto the 3rd round.

Methven players, Gayle O’Duffy and Jenny Senior couldn’t handle the tough stormy conditions during the tournament as well as the Waikato friends did, gifting the pair a relatively easy run into the quarter finals, with a win 6 and 4.

To reach the semi-finals Green and Myers won 2 and 1 against Janine McCauley and Christine Tylden (Taupo) in their 4th match on Wednesday 27 March, to then face the defending champions Iris Jillett (Whakatane) and Susan Somerville (Te Marua) in their semi final.

A comfortable win 4 and 2, played in near perfect conditions, put them in the final against Trudy Cooper and Denise Sweetman who hail from nearby Otaki Golf Club.

Cooper and Sweetman might ruse what could have been, having lead the match for many of the opening holes. However the dogged pair, with some accurate putting, finally took the match out on the 18th, 1-up and the 2019 title.

Cooper and Sweetman had also had a good run to the final. Their opening match they won 3 and 1 against Carole Brand (Gleniti) and Vicki Moore (Ashburton), followed by a win 3 and 2, against Nancy Andrews and Penny Bertelsen from their home club, Otaki.

The Helensville pair of Val Dent and Marilyn Trent gave the Otaki finalists their 3rd win losing 3 and 1, before Cooper and Sweetman were up against a local pair in their quarter final.

Paraparaumu’s Robyna Aitken and Norrey Simmons lost 1 down on the 18th green . The host clubs last hope of getting the 2019 title, was therefore on the shoulders of Mary McCulloch and Christine Shum who faced Cooper and Sweetman in the other semi-final round. Also going to the 18th green Otaki was the winner in this semi, with a 1 up win to Sweetman and Cooper.

128 players came from around the country to this mighty links challenge which also recognises the first round losers competing for the NZLGU Salver. This year’s winners were Heather Gifkins and Pam Johnston, who play their golf at Waitomo.

Runners up in the NZLGU Salver were Yuriko Manabe and Christine May from Shandon, with the bronze medal on this side of the draw for the semi-finalists awarded to Celia Howden and Mary Kavanagh (Karori) and Diane Boot and Colleen Rowe (Hamilton).

In typical ‘Womens Golf’ tradition players are guaranteed at least five rounds with multiple flights on both sides of the draw. Flight winners included Sue Armstrong and Allison Fraei (Paraparaumu), Jennie Hewett and Kellie Orchard (Royal Wellington) Sinead Keaney (Akarana) and Aseri (Maraenui), Christene Dennison and Bronwyn O’Brien (Tuatapere), Yvonne Jackson and Mary Wilson (Paraparaumu), Maureen de Bernardo and Wendy Stilwell (Paraparaumu) and, Tish Amon and Debbie Taylor (Wairakei), in the NZ Autumn Foursomes Cup flights.

NZLGU Salver flight winners included Carole Butland and Kim Weber-Swain (Shandon), Chrissie Courtman (Hamilton) and Rosie Priest (Levin), Lynn Pedersen and Corinne Pert (Wairakei), Sandra Pickering and Wendy Quinn (Boulcott’s Farm), Jane Logan (Waiheke) and Trish Stewart (Inglewood), Roselee Thurston and Karen Musson (Otaki) along with Virginia Gibbs and Jackie Higgins from Manaia.

PaR nz Golfing Holidays who manage the tournament under the auspices of New Zealand Golf, will announce shortly the 2020 venue and dates, which is due to be hosted in the South Island.