Shield win to Waikato
IT’S probably a good thing Tony Tian was reserve for Waikato at the Booth Shield junior interprovincial tournament here last weekend.
Had his Saturday scores counted, Waikato would have won the 54-hole teams’ net tournament by even more.
Waikato added another chapter to the tournament’s 57-year history with a 13-shot win over Bay of Plenty on the Poverty Bay course.
Tian recorded red-hot net scores of 57 and 60 off his 34 handicap on Saturday.
Hosts Poverty Bay-East Coast’s No.1 side finished fourth overall but their two teams had individual success.
Ellen Ball won the girls’ 54-hole net with a 214 total that included a personal best 95-30-65 on Saturday morning.
Her overall total could have been substantially lower but for an 11 on the par-3 sixth hole where she got herself into all sorts of bunker trouble.
Ball finished just one stroke ahead of Waikato’s Lauola Palamo.
Home province players also dominated the boys’ 54-hole net.
Wairoa’s Xavier Tohiariki-Williams (67, 76, 61) and Poverty Bay’s Travis Mitchell (68, 66, 70) finished on the same top net score of 204. Tohiariki-Williams won on countback.
Another PBEC player, Andy Brott, was third-equal, thanks to an excellent third round of 87-24-63.
PBEC’s Jessica Hayward deserved special mention. Hayward went into the tournament with a career grand total of just three 18-hole rounds off the women’s yellow tees.
On top of that she had to play off the maximum allowable handicap of 43 for girls instead of her current course handicap of 54.
She responded with her three best rounds, includng 120 on Sunday afternoon.
Teammate Anahera Stills-Hindmarsh had a tough Saturday but bounced back impressively on Sunday with a net 72 — a 15-shot improvement on her second round.
At the lower end of the handicap scale, there was some outstanding scoring by the top players.
Bay of Plenty’s James Golding won the boys’ 54-hole gross with a 4-under 212 comprising rounds of 71, 68, 73. He had 14 birdies over the three rounds, five of those on his final nine holes.
Golding finished eight shots ahead of BoP teammate Mitchell Kale.
Waikato’s Zahraa Bester won the girls’ 54-hole gross with 5-over 227 (78, 75, 74). She was two ahead of PBEC’s Tessa McDonald on 229 (79, 76, 74).
The youngest player in the field, Wellington eight-year-old Hugo Sidford, had father and professional Alistair Sidford beaming proudly after nets of 72, 76, 73 off his 32 handicap.