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Northern Inland Order of Merit Series

Our 2015 season has started off at a cracking pace with four events on consecutive weekends.  Our schedule has expanded this year to 12 events with the addition of the Coonabarabran Junior Open Day.  Our fields are slightly down on last year (125 rounds to date) but we are confident that the numbers will pick up as the year progresses.

Armidale Junior Open Day - Sunday February 15th

A familiar start to the season with a playoff required to separate the winners of the Junior Boys division.  Darcy Carroll (Moree) and Reid Brown (Wingham) both had rounds of 76 with Reid prevailing in a 5 hole play-off.  Darcy was the convincing winner of the NIOOM series in 2014 and he looks like he will be hard to beat again this year.  The Junior Boys nett division was won by Matthew Felton (Inverell) with a score of 71, a couple of shots better than Toby Cooper (Armidale).  The Junior Girls division was again contested by Bronte Walsh (Armidale) and Breanna Purse (Moree) with Breanna continuing on from last year by taking out the gross prize.

A small but competitive field contested the Cadet Boys division with a new player, Braith Kliendienst (Guyra) taking home the gross prize.  Braith was followed home by Harrison Dowden (Guyra) and Jack Marshall (Tamworth) in a close battle.  The Cadet Girls division was won by Annabelle Abrahamson (Moree) with a great score of 59 shots.  Eight local Armidale “Tyros” ventured out to play the 5 hole event and we hope to see many of these young players continuing their interest in golf throughout the year. 

Moree Junior Open Day – Sunday February 22nd

A good field of over 40 players turned up on a hot summer day at Moree.  Players came from Coonabarabran, Armidale, Gunnedah, Inverell, Tamworth, Walcha, Warialda and the host club to enjoy the hospitality and great golf course.  Moree is about as far west as our Territory stretches and a bit of rain would not go astray!!  A great round of 73 from Andrew Brennan (Walcha) was good enough to take home the Junior Boys division gross prize.  Andrew’s score was a couple better than Joel Stahlau (SE Qld.), a regular visitor to our events in NSW.  For the second successive event, Matthew Felton (Inverell) was the winner of the Junior Boys division nett prize.  Other players to better their handicaps were Jock McPherson (Tamworth) and Rhys Devney (Moree).

Breanna Purse (Moree) was again too strong for the rest of the girls in the Junior Girls division.  Breanna took advantage of her local course knowledge to beat her handicap by a couple of shots.  The Cadet Boys division saw a good field of nine boys participate.  A great score of 55 shots was good enough to see Jack Rae (Moree) take the biscuits from Jason Haddad (Moree), Royce Carroll (Moree) and Ben Ryan (Moree).  Annabelle Abrahamson (Moree) again took out the Cadet Girls division with a fantastic score of 55 shots.  Another great field of nine players played in the 5 hole event and there are good signs that the “pipeline” of Junior Golfers is in good shape at Moree.

Guyra Junior Open Day – Sunday March 1st

Junior Golf has been very strongly supported at Guyra over the last few years, mainly due to the efforts of the JPO Adam Brennan and a group of parents willing to travel great distances to support their children’s sport.  One of the most consistent supporters of the NIOOM series, Toby Cooper (Armidale) was able to capture his inaugural victory in the Junior Boys division in a play-off victory.  Runner-up, Jake Ellis (Guyra) is also a regular on the circuit and is usually a front runner in the nett division events.  Jake’s nett 67 was good enough again on his home track to hold off Matthew Felton (Inverell) by a few shots.  Breanna Purse (Moree) was again the victor in the Junior Girls division.

A couple of locals, Garth Walls and Bailey Wilson fought out the Cadet Boys division with Garth prevailing by a few shots.  Annabelle Abrahamson (Moree) was again successful in the Cadet Girls division.  Courtney Dade (Uralla) was the runner-up.

Coonabarabran Junior Open Day – Sunday March 8th

A new event on the 2015 Northern Inland Order of Merit schedule is the Coonabarabran Junior Open.  Rebecca Artis (nee Flood) is probably the most famous graduate of the Coonabarabran Junior Program and she is currently pursuing her dream on the European Ladies Tour.  The participants came from Armidale, Dubbo, Gunnedah, Moree, Tamworth, Walcha, Mudgee as well as the host club and enjoyed a great day.  The Junior Boys division was won by Tom Gill (Tamworth) with a great score of 75 on a track that I suspect he was playing for the first time.  Darcy Carroll (Moree) kept up his consistent performances with the runner-up prize.  A couple of “Coona” locals prevailed in the Junior Boys nett division with Zac Kelly’s 66 holding off Bailey Milford by one shot.  Bailey Reedman (Coonabarabran) and Angus Renton (Gunnedah) also played better than their handicaps with nett rounds of 69.  Matilda Chapman (Coonabarabran) took out the Junior Girls division.

A new player on the tour, Jayden Selmes (Coonabarabran) took out the Cadet Boys division with a great score of 62 shots.  Brendan Scott (Tamworth) was runner-up 4 shots further back.  In a disappointing sign of the lack of young girls playing golf, Annabelle Abrahamson (Moree) was the only competitor in the Cadet Girls division.  However, not daunted, Annabelle’s scores continue to decline and her great round of 53 shots was her equal best round of the year-to-date.  Coonabarabran also hosted 5 young 5 hole “Tyros” in a sign that Junior Golf has a pipeline to the future.


Our next event in the NIOOM series is scheduled for Bundarra Golf Club on Sunday April 19th.  Bundarra is a sand green course and DOUBLE points are awarded in the Order of Merit Competition.

If you have any questions relating to Junior Golf in the Northern Inland Region, please contact Gerard Wilkinson, Jack Newton Junior Golf, on 0419 708 676.

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