Interstate Teams Series gets underway
BY Anthony Powter | Australian Mens Amateur Tour | 2008 Australian Interstate Teams Matches | Preview | 01 Sep 2008
The Australian interstate teams series starts in Sydney this week in a first where all Men’s, Women’s and Colt’s matches will run concurrently at three separate venues.
Monash Country Club will host the Men’s series, while the Clot’s will be held at Mona Vale Golf Club. The Women’s series for the Gladys Hay Memorial Cup will compete at Pymble Golf Club.
The Men’s interstate competition includes a strong array of Australian talent, spearheaded by four players ranked inside the world top-20, including Matthew Griffin from Victoria (6th), Rohan Blizard (7th) and Tim Stewart (16th) from New South Wales and emerging Western Australian star Matt Jager (20th).
New South Wales are the defending champions having won the title for the last three years running and will start favourites for the series. It’s a team packed with talent including Scott Arnold, Michael Raseta, Grant Scott, Rohan Blizard, Brendan Smith, Tim Stewart, Matthew Giles and Paul Blake, who at 42 is the oldest playing competing in the series.
The Western Australian team includes a number of emerging players with Michael Foster, runner-up at the Australian Amateur in April, Matt Jager, who secured three top-10 finishes in the US this season from five events and Jason Scrivener. Michael Dennis, John Martino, Brody Ninyette, Gavin Reed and Scott Hunter represent the remaining team members.
It’s a team that should press the defending champions and one that is certainly capable of taking the series, which it last did in 1999.
The Victorians are another strong team with Australia’s top world-ranked amateur and this year’s Rice Planters champion, Matthew Griffin, supported by Josh Younger, Daniel Beckmann, Luke Bleumink, Leighton Lyle, Ashley Umbers, Tom Prowse and Bryden Macpherson. Victoria won the series in 2003 and will meet South Australia in their opening match.
Daniel Nisbet, Ray Beaufils and Brett Rankin will lead the Queensland team, which last won the series in 2004. They are supported by Matthew McBain, Gavin Fairfax, Peter Hall, Tim Hart and Scott Smith.
The South Australian team includes Jordan Sherratt, Chris Austin and Nick Cullen, who all played strongly last season in National Trial events. Adrian Wickstein, Alex Hendrick, Stephen Speirs, Chris Brown and Max McCardle round out the South Australian team, which last won the series back in 1983.
Ryan McCarthy and Kalem Richardson head the Tasmanian team, which a team blended on youth and experience. Paul Marshall, 34, is a three-time winner of the Tasmanian Amateur and in 1995 won the Mandurah Easter Amateur. Marshall along with John Cassidy, 41, have experience in numerous interstate series and will be supported by Craig Hancock, Greg Longmore, Adam Ring and Mark Schulze.
Teams comprise of eight players who will be selected for foursomes and seven selected for singles matches in each match. The tournament is scheduled to be played over five consecutive days, with each day consisting of four foursomes matches and seven singles matches.