Judge­ford at­tracts young golfers

Kapi-Mana News - - CLASSIFIED CLASSIFIED - KRIS DANDO

‘‘We want to build the sport from the grass­roots for our young play­ers, mak­ing it ac­ces­si­ble for them.’’

Dud­ley Asi says ju­nior mem­ber­ship at Judge­ford Golf Club is in a good place.

The club’s man­ager and ju­nior con­vener, whose son Qualen plays in the se­nior in­ter­club side, said the last four years had been fruit­ful for the Judge­ford com­mit­tee.

‘‘There has been a rise in the in­ter­est of juniors in golf, and we de­cided we needed to take ad­van­tage of that,’’ he said.

‘‘We want to build the sport from the grass­roots for our young play­ers, mak­ing it ac­ces­si­ble for them.’’

Judge­ford pri­mar­ily gets ju­nior golfers from nearby suburbs like Whitby, but Asi said in­ter­est from other parts of the re­gion was also ev­i­dent.

Four years ago, there was one ju­nior night a week. Now two nights, hosted by ex­pe­ri­enced club mem­bers, are ded­i­cated to coach­ing for the next gen­er­a­tion of play­ers.

Hav­ing golfers like Qualen, Jay­den Ford and Trey Shed­lock pro­gress­ing into se­ri­ous in­ter­club play had been a shot in the arm for the ju­nior pro­gramme, he said.

Judge­ford has se­ri­ously tar­geted Porirua schools to ratchet up the in­ter­est among young play­ers.

Asi said that though mem­ber­ships in many golf clubs, and in other sports and or­gan­i­sa­tions, was drop­ping, Judge­ford was mov­ing in the other di­rec­tion.

‘‘What we’re see­ing now is that gen­er­a­tion of dads and mums are get­ting their kids into it. It’s about be­ing ac­tive in our own com­mu­nity and at least of­fer­ing the op­por­tu­nity to play a sport many of us love.’’

He said a Samoan golfing academy had been es­tab­lished and was go­ing well.

PHOTO: FAIRFAX

Judge­ford Golf Club is ap­peal­ing to young mem­bers.

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