Waikato Look For 3 Peat
Waikato Aiming for Three-Peat
In one of the biggest events on the amateur calendar, Waikato Golf is aiming for a piece of history by winning three Toro Interprovincial titles in a row.
14 other Districts will tee it up at the New Plymouth Golf Club tomorrow in an attempt to win the coveted trophy and put a stop to Waikato’s dominance. The three-peat was last achieved by Bay of Plenty in 2007-09.
Leading the charge for the defending champions are two of the country’s leading amateurs in Luke Toomey and Nick Coxon. Both players featured in the six strong New Zealand team that travelled to Korea for the Asia Pacific Amateur Championship (AAC). Coxon was the leading Kiwi until the final round when Toomey carded an impressive six-under, 66 to finish top Kiwi and third overall.
Coxon showed his natural talent at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Korea and was calm and casual when talking about the big week ahead. “The Toro’s are always an exciting week and with our recent results we are all pretty excited to get back into it and maybe do it all again,” smiled Coxon. “We have lost a couple of key players but I still think we have a nice mix of youth and experience to get the job done.”
Denzel Iremia and Sam Vincent played a crucial part in last year’s victory but are now plying their trade in America at Iowa State College.
Winning the historical Toro Interprovincials never comes easy and this week is no exception with a plethora of teams putting their hand up to challenge for national glory.
Wellington are ones to watch with Daniel Hillier, Jonathan Cane and Kerry Mountcastle among the top-ranked players who have been in fine form of recent. Hillier made his debut at the AAC this year and continues to develop an exciting career and a very full trophy cabinet. However, one thing missing is the Toro title and he will be gunning to tick this off his bucket list late this week.
The Bay of Plenty boys showed they enjoy the match-play format after a hint of success at the New Zealand Amateur in Royal Wellington earlier this month. William Howard, Henry Spring and qualifying Stroke Play leader, Shaun Campbell, all showed they can foot it in this form of the game and will be dangerous throughout the week.
North Harbour will also be putting their hand up as they look to stop an 11-year drought with Jason Gulasekharam playing as their number one and the exciting Jake Meenhorst at number five proves their dangerous depth.
For all golf fans across the country the Toro Interprovincials are the pinnacle event for their district, they are remembered for many years to come and they are certainly worth bragging rights for 365 more days.
The first ball will be struck at 7:30am tomorrow with Waikato, Otago and Bay of Plenty starting the week with a bye. Over the last five years the title has been shared by the following regions:
2015 - Waikato
2014 - Waikato
2013 - Manawatu/Wanganui
2012 - Bay of Plenty
2011 – Southland
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