Cad­die num­bers need­ing a boost

Central Otago Mirror - - FEATURES -

Cad­dies Re­quired! The call went out in last week’s Mir­ror publi­ca­tion to boost the num­bers of cad­dies who had al­ready come for­ward to as­sist at the NZ PGA, and the re­sponse was tremen­dous. This year’s NZPGA Cham­pi­onship was on the look­out for some 120 cad­dies to as­sist in this pres­ti­gious event. So good was the power of the press, that Caddy Master An­drew Whi­ley said that he got over a dozen emails from the story in the Mir­ror this week. ‘‘I have been over­whelmed in the past two weeks with caddy in­ter­est and I am not reg­is­ter­ing any more cad­dies,’’ he said A Golfer and His caddy – it’s a bit like tea and toast, wine and cheese, Mum and Dad; one is not en­tirely ef­fec­tive with­out the pres­ence of the other. Not only is be­ing a cad­die a great op­por­tu­nity to get as close as you can to the heat of the com­pe­ti­tion, as a caddy you get to be part of the event it­self and ex­pe­ri­ence the hype of an event of this cal­i­bre Cad­dies were re­quired for both the pro­fes­sional field and ama­teur play­ers.

Ap­prox­i­mately 80 cad­dies for the pro­fes­sional golfers. This gen­er­ally be­gins on Tues­day Fe­bru­ary 26 for the prac­tice round and con­tin­ues through Sun­day pro­vided the player makes the cut.

Ap­prox­i­mately 40 cad­dies for the ama­teur play­ers. This is over two rounds on Satur­day March 1 and Sun­day March 2. As the tour­na­ment has in­creased to a Tier 1 event on the PGA Tour of Aus­trala­sia, it has meant that all play­ers will need a caddy com­pared to last year’s event which was a state-based cham­pi­onship and play­ers were al­lowed to carry their own bags or use a trundler. Many of the cad­dies who signed up early were some re­turn­ing from the pre­vi­ous year be­cause they "loved the ex­pe­ri­ence" Whi­ley said. There is no set age re­stric­tion in place, with last year, cad­dies rang­ing from 16 to 60 in age! Ide­ally cad­dies will have some golf knowl­edge and be phys­i­cally fit as they will need to carry a tour bag around the course. Ar­row­town’s Rob An­drews didn’t need any per­sua­sion to put his name for­ward to be a caddy for the NZ PGA at ‘The Hills’ in Ar­row­town. Rob cad­died last year, and so en­joyed it, that he’s keen to be back amidst the ac­tion this year. ‘‘It was a great ex­pe­ri­ence last year – some­thing quite dif­fer­ent to be in­volved in,’’ he said. ‘‘You are right up there in the mix of the tour­na­ment as a caddy, in­stead of be­ing be­hind a rope or watch­ing from a dis­tance.’’ Find­ing out the re­quire­ments of be­ing a caddy is straight­for­ward – you just need to google it Rob ad­vised. ‘‘But you don’t need to be knowl­edge­able – just be aware and quiet. How­ever googling can also in­crease your knowl­edge and in­form you about the eti­quette ex­pected on the golf course.’’ Last year Rob car­ried the clubs for Brett McLeod who un­for­tu­nately didn’t make the cut but since then Rob has fol­lowed his progress in fur­ther events and is pleased to hear (as of last week­end) that he was placed 15th at a tour­na­ment in Queens­land, Aus­tralia. Rob said the PGA is really a great event and he is more than pleased to have been part of it last year. As a golfer him­self, he en­joy s get­ting out on the course, but be­ing a caddy at an event as pres­ti­gious as this, gives an in­sight into the sport and also an op­por­tu­nity which nor­mally would be un­heard of. ‘‘All the peo­ple I spoke to from Aussie were blown away with the event.’’ ‘‘We are very lucky to have this here right at our own back door.’’

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