Golf tournament draws crowd

Chris Anderson of Ashburton, from left, with fellow women’s first grade players Hiromi Ikehata of Methven, Judith Tutton of Gleniti and Natasha Brown of Timaru at the Ashburton nine hole tournament.
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Tennis coach Chris Anderson of Ashburton has a new social sport in her string of successes – nine hole golf.

She has been playing now for six years and is making her mark.

She is one of the top players in the Ashburton Golf Club’s nine hole section and this month entered her second nine hole tournament at the club.

Out on the green: some of the players as they gear up for play in the nine hole golf tournament at Ashburton Golf Club.

The tournament started with announcements and morning tea, and finished after play with lunch.

Anderson was in the women’s first grade. She has a golf handicap of 11.

It was her first tournament back after a tennis injury to her finger.

‘‘I only play (nine hole golf) socially. Being a former sports person I treat this as my social time but there is a wee bit of a competitive edge there,’’ she said.

Tennis has always been Anderson’s main sport; she was the Ashburton Tennis Centre coach for 12 years and is still involved in the tennis scene.

Work commitments stopped her from playing the longer 18-hole game, and since taking up nine hole, she is enjoying the social side.

‘‘Because I was quite involved in tennis, this is just a different circle of friends and you can go away and play other courses,’’ she said.

Anderson was up against around 17 other grade one players in the tournament, which drew 65 players across four categories; women’s grades one, two and three; and a men’s.

She was playing in a four made up of Hiromi Ikehata of Methven, Judith Tutton of Gleniti and Natasha Brown of Timaru. Brown went on to win the top nett of the grade at 34.

The tournament, usually held in February, was postponed due to rain. The foursome teed off from the number one hole in ideal spring weather conditions – warm and windless.

The playing format was best nett and putting.

Players came from 14 clubs including Feilding, Christchurch, Geraldine, Gleniti, Greendale, Lincoln, Mayfield, Methven, Russley, Tasman, Timaru and Tinwald.

Ashburton 9 Hole golfers, above from left, Janice Dunlop, Joy Nicholas and Muriel Morgan sorting registrations for the annual 9 Hole Tournament at Ashburton Golf Club.

Ashburton nine hole section convener Muriel Morgan said players were playing individually in groups of four; different clubs in each group.

‘‘It’s very social,’’ she said.

Morgan has been playing nine hole golf for five years.

She said golf lessons were her 70th birthday present to herself.

‘‘I’ve always played nine. It’s really good to start with nine.’’

Full results: Ashburton 9holes Golf mixed tournament held on October 5.

Grade 1 Women: Best Nett – Natasha Brown , Timaru (34), runner-up – Jenny Mournihan , Pleasant Point (35). Putting – Judy Moore, Rakaia (14). Straightest Drive #7 – Sharon Smith, Timaru. 2nd shot nearest pin #8 – Jill Ludeman – Mayfield.

Grade 2 Women: Best Nett – Annette Maw, Methven (32), runner-up – Barbara May, Greendale (33). Putting – Verna Jackson, Timaru (16). Straightest Drive #7 – Lois Sparrow, Ashburton. 2nd shot nearest pin #8 – Keri Murphy, Timaru.

Grade 3 Women: Best Nett – Sandra Ward, Gleniti (25), runner-up – Gail Gutsell, Ashburton (29). Putting – Alycen Cournane, Pleasant Point (14). Straightest Drive #16 – Faye Maclennon, Rakaia. 2nd shot nearest pin #14 – Gail Gutsell, Ashburton.

Men: Best Nett -Sam Prince, Ashburton (33), runner-up – Peter Macaulay, Ashburton (33). Putting – Colin Fleming (12). Straightest Drive #16 – Gary Stratford, Ashburton. 2nd shot nearest pin #14 – Sam Prince, Ashburton.

■ Organisers for the Methven Nine Hole Tournament are calling for registrations now. It is at the Methven Golf Club on October 27.