The 2016 Golf Warehouse Canterbury Matchplay is being held at the Coringa Golf Club starting Friday with the qualifying for the Open Mens section.
The Women's section will be a little different this year with 18 hole qualifying on Saturday morning and then a split into two divisions of eight to form a Championship Division and Division 2. Fourteen contenders line up in qualifying with favourites likely to be Canterbury Reps Catherine Bell, Juliana Hung, Hillary O'Connor and Jasmine Rou. Their Canterbury team-mate Amelia Garvey is competing overseas, while Momoka Kobori is now on college scholarship in the US. Elisha Crosbie is a seasoned match player and could challenge, and there will be significant interest in nine year old Jeonghyun Lee playing off a one handicap. Lee performed with credit at last weekend's Interclub Finals and is being touted as the next Lydia Ko.
The men will qualify into two divisions - Men's Championship and Division 2.
Defending Champion Oscar Cadenhead (Clearwater) will be back to defend his title. Competition will be hotly contested with a number of other players in good form including local and current strokeplay champion Nic Kay, and young guns Marcel Boet, Hiroki Miya, and Matt Mclean. The likes of Richard Reed, Jake Hallinan, JJ Love, Dan Laughton, Reid Hilton, and Sam Purdon will also be looking to gain a top qualifying spot to plot an easier path through to the finals on Sunday.
The Masters Championships start on Saturday morning with 18 holes strokeplay qualifying into the championship fields of eight players for Masters Men and Women.
The Women's Masters field has ten entries, with defending champ Joanne Kent and Harewood's Anne Dick leading the field.
The Men's Masters Championship sees a strong field of fifteen players with the top eight men going through to the matchplay draw. The Canterbury Matchplay is the final opportunity to impress with the Canterbury Selectors announcing the Canterbury Men's Masters team to compete at the NZ Freyberg following the tournament. A number of players are more than capable of going through to win the Championship, it will be interesting to follow the results over the weekend, with very tight matches anticipated. Defending champ Andrew Dufton is back, and so is last year's runner-up Aaron Forsyth. These two have competed in the last two matchplay finals and will be looking for a three-peat. The likes of Blair Dibley, Richard Belcher, and James Robb are likely to provide stiff opposition. Former Masters Rep Paul Bailey is an interesting entry.
Play starts Friday at 8am with the Open qualifying, and the same time on Saturday.
Results will also be posted on the Canterbury Golf website throughout the weekend.