Toggle main menu

Junior Pennants Change

Newcastle District has taken a positive step in growing the game for junior golfers by introducing a new and exciting format for their pennants series commencing Sunday 29th May.

Like many regions junior numbers have been down due to lower participation rates and commitments with other sports during the winter pennant series.

In recent years Newcastle DGA has trialed formats that worked but seemed to miss ticking a few boxes in the juniors eyes.  This year NDGA secretary Rod Carruthers and JPO Don Nelson sat down with JNJG Territory manager Mark Ingrey to find answers.

“We had a tough job creating something that would satisfy everyone, our goal was to get the passion back.  We gave ourselves two guidelines from the start: 1. Participation 2. Matchplay.  Over the course of the meeting we came up with multiple scenarios however each came with limiting factors”

“I’m really lucky that I work with two guys who have a great passion and vision for the game, they follow that through with direct engagement in developing opportunities for juniors and the NDGA” said Mark.

The final outcome is something that tick’s the box, it allows increased participation and provides the juniors with matchplay experience.  NDGA junior pennants will be run over 3 weeks with each club able to provide one or as many juniors as they like.  The juniors will be placed into pools, which will be named after some of Newcastle’s best golfers, James Nitties, Nathan Green, Jake Higginbottom, Nick Flanagan.  The matches will be played over the entire 18 holes with a balance handicap system in place, the players will be awarded points rather than winning or losing holes.  Our final results will see prizes going to the highest points scorers individual, club team and group team.

“This is a win win for us all, I have heard juniors talking about pennants again. I’ve heard of clubs providing more than just shirts for their team. It’s exciting and to kick off the pennants we have 44 players this Sunday.”  The system is not unique, JNJG use it for their New Zealand Schools Team Tour in January each year.  It’s worked well there so Newcastle have adopted it and made a few changes that suit their clubs and juniors,” said Mark.

Add your comments...