Date: January 15, 2018
Author: Mark Hayes

Perth deluge hampers #AusAm practice

The remnants of tropical Cyclone Joyce are playing havoc with preparations for the Australian Amateur Championship, presented by Swinging Skirts in Perth.

But tournament director Trevor Herden said provided the bad weather passes early tomorrow, the scheduled start date, minimal “game-changing” damage had been suffered and little time would be lost.

Both host clubs, Lake Karrinyup and Wanneroo, north of Perth, are holding up well as the West Australian capital, in parts, cops more than three months of its average summer rainfall in two days.

Lake Karrinyup had 57mm until 5.40pm today, while Wanneroo had endured 44mm by 5pm as rain continued to tumble.

Players were effectively forced from both courses during scheduled practice rounds this afternoon as driving rain made play impractical.

“A lot of people practised yesterday on both courses and a few played at Wanneroo today, but there hasn’t been a lot of practice here today,” Herden said at Lake Karrinyup.

“But I’ve just been around a number of holes and impressively there’s no wash-outs in any of the bunkers, it’s just surface water.

“A lot of the greens haven’t got too much water on them either and are very good.

“So if we can get through the night without much more rain, we should be good to start (near the scheduled time tomorrow).”

Herden said if any time was lost tomorrow, the first plan was to “get on whenever we can and play catch-up”.

“If we got to a certain point where it was impossible to finish the tournament, we’d have to reassess how we handle it.

“But until that time, we just have to press on to get on schedule as quickly as possible and minimise the impact on the closing rounds of match play later in the week.

“This course drains well and Wanneroo was exceptional this afternoon when I was there this afternoon because it really teemed up there.

“But the greens are holding up really well at both courses, so we’re not worried yet.”

The category one Joyce crossed the Pilbara coast late last week, dumping heavy rain in the region before moving south.