Date: May 07, 2019
Author: Dave Tease

Men go two from two on day one #IntSeries

Two from Two the way to go for NSW

It was a perfect two from two for the NSW Men's Team on the opening day of the Australian Interstate Teams Matches at Tasmania Golf Club.

The Blues made short work of the Northern Territory with a six matches to one win to kick things off in a bright start to their 2019 campaign.

Debutants Jye Pickin (2&1) and James Conran (3 & 1) got their interstate careers off to the best start with sound wins, before Jordie Garner, Blake Windred and Josh Armstrong ensured the points.

Win of the morning undoubtedly belonged to the St. Michael's tyro, Harrison Crowe who accounted for NT opponent 8&7.

The Blues afternoon match, however, was a far tougher affair against last years' finalists, Queensland. It was a hard-fought affair which didn't disappoint with NSW winning 4 1/2 to 2 1/2.

New South Wales third debutant, Lucas Higgins, came into the team for the first time against his former state. Higgins fought hard all the way, and except for a miscued tee shot on his penultimate hole, it would have been a dream start to his time in blue.

Crowe, who led the NSW Boys Team to interstate glory just under a month ago, put another mark in the win column beside his name, accounting for Joel Stahlhut.

Conran, who looks like a golfer who belongs at this level, also made it a perfect day. A string of four birdies in a row was too much for his opponent, and the Duntryleague and Pymble golfer recorded a decisive 6&4 win.

Jordie Garner was unlucky to finish with a half in his match after encountering an errant piece of wood on his final hole. Unable to get club on the ball, he could do little more than try and bump it towards the edge of the green. The bogey left him rueing the opportunity.

The all-important point was secured with by turn-around wins from Nathan Barbieri and team co-captain, Blake Windred.

The pair, who were both well down early, fought back to grab wins.

WIndred, who was two down after six holes, and Barbieri, who for most of the afternoon looked out of sorts, recorded wins of 3&2 and two up at the end to endure the ideal day one start for NSW.

Windred was a relieved man after his match, saying he had to dig deep.

"It feels pretty awesome. We made a few birdies and a couple of eagles.

"I was telling the boys that against Queensland we needed to fire up, and we did.

"It was our first big win for the week, so I'm sure we will go onto some bigger and better things."

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Bounce back for NSW Women settles the ship

The NSW Women's team bounced back from their narrow loss to Victoria this morning with a 3 1/2 to 1/ 1/2 win over South Australia in the afternoon matches at Royal Hobart Golf Club.

Kelsey Bennett led the way with a dominant 7&5 win over Sophie Hilditch, while Stephanie Kyriacou grabbed her first win for the series with a 6&5 win over Amelia Whinney.

Doey Choi made it two wins from two starts with a 2&1 win over Charley Jacobs, while her Concord teammate Sophie Yip grabbed a half against Matilda Miels.

Grace Kim had no luck on day one, going down to Jin Young Yun on the last hole.

NSW will now face Queensland tomorrow morning in a must-win match after the Maroons defeated Victoria in the afternoon matches to blast the competition wide-open. 


#INTSeries Women go down fighting against Victoria

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It was a fightback of sorts, but it all came to nothing for the NSW Women's Team who have gone down three matches to two arch-rivals Victoria on the opening day of competition at the 2019 Australian Interstate Teams Championships.

Royal Hobart Golf Club turned on a beauty to greet the competitors this morning, but it meant for little for the NSW Team who couldn't overcome a slow start to proceedings.

Amy Chu, first out for NSW battle and battling a bout of jet lag, fought all the way again her opponent, Stefanie Vogel, to claim a half point early.

The usually reliable top half of the order for NSW, sadly, struggled to come to grips with a determined Victorian team.

Grace Kim, playing in the number one match, couldn't handle a red-hot Stepahine Bunque, eventually losing 6 & 4.

Stephanie Kyriacou, despite feeling confident early in her match, could respond on the back nine, going down to Jessica Pickwick 2 & 1.

Doey Choi, however, proved what formidable competitor she is, with an impressive 5 & 4 win over Kono Matsumoto.

With a win not looking likely, If NSW was to salvage anything from the result, it was going to have to come at the hands of St. Michael's Kelsey Bennett.

The plucky 19-year-old had looked for all money done and dusted after turning for home three down, but a brace of birdies early in the back nine [pulled the match back to square.

After Bennett grabbed the 17th, she was suddenly one up, and a half did look likely for the blues.

Pressure plays games at times, and when Bennett missed a 12 footer on the last, and her opponent Alex Hilliard made a birdie, the points were in the southerners hands.

Team Captain Choi was philosophical after the result, congratulating Victoria on how well they played.

"It was very close. A couple of the girls fought back well, so we feel good about going into our next round despite this loss.

"On paper, we have a strong team, but it is about what happens on the day.

"A couple of the girls did not play good, their opponents putted great, and there's nothing you can do about that."

Choi anticipated some changes for the afternoon match, with Amy Chu sitting out, and Grace Kim and herself switching around in the order.

"Amy is still feeling a bit of jet lag, so Sophie (Yip) is coming in."