It was a case of deja vu for the Otago men’s side, which was victorious at the South Island Men’s 8-man Interprovincial at Christchurch’s Waitikiri Golf Club in the weekend.
The victory meant successive South Island wins on Canterbury soil, after the side also won the title in 2014 at Russley Golf Club.
Despite plenty of rain on the Marshland course on Friday, there were fine conditions on Saturday, and Otago got off to the perfect start with a 6-2 win over Aorangi and a 5-3 win over Southland to set themselves up for a positive result on Sunday.
No 6 Ben Patston and No 8 Duncan Croudis recorded two wins for the day, while No 5 Johnny Mackay managed a half and a win to also stay unbeaten.
Meanwhile the other provinces were dealing blows to each other, with Aorangi staging the biggest upset, beating hosts Canterbury 4.5-3.5.
Otago captain Brandon Hodgson said beating arch rivals Canterbury on Sunday was firm in the player’s minds; however, with half the side playing different provinces on opposite sides of the course, there was no way of knowing how the matches were going.
At lunch on Sunday victory was in the balance, with the top four all losing to Canterbury’s top quartet.
Otago eventually succumbed to the hosts 5.5-2.5.
However, as usual Otago’s strength has been its depth, and in this case the tail wagged.
Patston, Croudis and Mackay continued their unbeaten run on Sunday afternoon, ensuring an emphatic 7-1 victory over Tasman and the title win.
Along with Mackay (3 wins and a half), Patston, and Croudis (both 4 wins), Aorangi’s top duo of Tim Leonard (4 wins) and Josh Smith (2 wins, 2 halves) were the only other unbeaten players.
The selection panel will now weigh up the performances from the weekend and collate them with the results of the Otago Matchplay Championship at Balmacewen this Labour Weekend.
Some positional changes could be possible before the 5-man team plus travelling reserve is selected for the Toro Interprovincial at Hastings Golf Club at the end of November.
– Michael Minty
The results of the SIIP played at the Marlborough Golf Club on the weekend of the 19/20th October.
In the first round Otago played the host Tasman, losing 6/2. Wins for Otago Sumin Kang and Eleanor Newton.
The Afternoon round saw Otago lose 5/3 to Aorangi. Wins to Joanna Booker, Eleanor Newton, halves to Sumin Kang and Brenda Sutherland.
Sunday round was against last years winners Canterbury. Otago lost 7/1. Otago’s only win was to Eleanor Newton.
Individual placings for Otago were as follows.
Eleanor Newton (Chisholm Links) 3 from 3.
Sumin Kang (Wakatipu Jnr) 1 win ,1half, 1 loss.
Joanna Booker (Arrowtown) 1 win.
Brenda Sutherland (Otago) 1 half.
The overall winner of the SIIP was Tasman, the last time they had their name on the trophy was 23 years ago.
Full copy of results attached.