Date: February 12, 2015
Author: Mark Hayes

Golf-aholic wins pro-am prize of a lifetime

“I’m a golf-aholic. I can’t wait.”

Rarely has anyone been so excited to take a phone call as Marion Hutch, who today won the grand prize in Golf Australia’s Facebook competition to play a round in the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open pro-am with fellow West Australian Minjee Lee and Kerri-Anne Kennerley.

Hutch, or “Maz” to her friends, was unsure whether her equally golf crazy husband Gary, or her Perth employer would be happy with her having to down tools and fly to Melbourne.

But two reassuring sentences quickly prompted a search for flights.

“Gary said, `You’re absolutely *&^%$#@ crazy if you don’t go’ and then my boss said, `I guess you’re going to Melbourne , then’,” she beamed.

“So I get to play Royal Melbourne – I can’t believe it!”

Maz will join the pair next Wednesday morning on a course about as far removed as possible from where she’s played the bulk of her golf.

Hutch, a 13-handicapper at Perth’s Westaviat Golf Club, was club champion at Karratha for 11 years and Pilbara regional champ seven times.

But despite holding two course records – even-par 72 at Karratha and two-over 74 at nearby Roebourne – Maz knows she’s going to need a crash course to play at Royal Melbourne.

“I think I’m going to go and find some glass to practice putting on for a few days,” she joked.

“Actually, there’s some marble floors at work – I might give them a try.”

Maz and Gary spend their holidays golfing around the world, even planning a trip to play several championship courses in Africa later this year.

“But this will be unbelievable. This will top it all, for sure.”

Hutch won the prize by sharing a video of Lee and Kennerley on Facebook, a competition that sparked almost 2000 entries.

The pro-am will be held in morning and afternoon fields on Wednesday, the day before the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open begins in earnest.