The Western Australian Golf Club will play host to the much-anticipated Amateur Championships of WA next week, with some of the best male and female talent from around the country featuring in the stroke and match play event.
The competition will also boast some big names from around the world, with athletes from Hong Kong and Japan making the trip over to Perth.
Stars from both metropolitan and rural WA clubs will take part in the five-day competition, with match play applying to the top 32 players in the men, and top 16 from the female field from stoke play rounds.
Top 10 Australian Amateurs Haydn Barron and Ben Ferguson will feature at Yokine, with Barron searching for a victory on his beloved home course in 2018.
“Definitely looking forward to it,” Barron said. “Anytime you can have a State Amateur and National Ranking Event at your home course, it’s going to be a big plus.”
The 22-year old believes he holds a major advantage over the rest of the field, with his knowledge of the course and constant practice vital to a breakthrough victory.
“I’ve been here for six years now,” Barron claimed. “Playing the course four times a week for six years you generally know where you can and can’t go.”
“As I am getting more consistent, I’m seeing the same parts of the course more often.”
The Western Australian Golf Course will allow for some solid scoring throughout the week, with Barron describing the course as being in “near perfect” condition.
“It is the best course that we have in WA,” he said. “It is short by the modern standards but it is a par 70 which a lot of people forget about.”
“Obviously it opens up with a 230m par-three which can get people off to a bit of a nervy start.”
“The course as a whole is looking unbelievable, nearly the best I have seen it since I have been here. All the staff are working super hard to prepare for it.”
Barron welcomes the overseas and national contingent to Perth, with a strong field always resulting in some entertaining and thrilling golf for the spectators.
“Having those sorts of players will be awesome,” he exclaimed.
“The WA boys want to play in as strong a field as we can, we want to play against the best players that we can.”
“Generally you would expect people that are coming from overseas to be pretty good players.”
The local believes it is anyone’s game come the Sunday of the championship, with match play throwing up unpredictable results for the players.
“All the guys that are training with the WA state team can all play good golf on the day,” he said.
“Match play is a funny game anything really can happen. It is anyone’s game to be fair.”
Defending West Aussie female champion Kirsten Rudgeley will be hopeful of another good showing at the tournament, while fellow Sandgropers Kathryn Norris and Abbie Teasdale will be chasing the elusive title.
Isabella Leung has travelled from Hong Kong and will pose a constant threat, with WA Junior State Team member Yeah-Jin Lee a dark horse in the absence of Maddison Hinson-Tolchard.
Japan’s Norika Tsukamato will be the other major contender from overseas in the female section of the draw.
Victorian’s Lukas Michel and Jack Murdoch will be a duo to look out for over the week, with Matthew Cheung flying the flag for Hong Kong in the men’s division.
Australian Amateur Championship co-medallists Darcy Boyd and Connor McKinney will also be hunting the title after dominant starts to 2018.
The qualifying rounds will commence at 7.00am on Wednesday, with entry free for the entire tournament.