Golfers swing well at Provo

Cayman golf is getting close to the hole of late.

The latest proof of that comes via Cayman’s result at the 2009 Caribbean Amateur Golf Championship in Turks and Caicos.

Cayman placed sixth at the tournament against some of the best golf nations in the Caribbean.

The Provo golf course at the Alexandra resort was host to 10 teams from the Caribbean competing for some six trophies.

In addition to Cayman the other teams were Bahamas, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago and Turks and Caicos.

Cayman had a pair of impressive performances. The women’s and senior’s teams both finished fifth and saw players shoot in the 70’s.

The women’s team consisted of Nitty Howe, Josie Yeend and Samantha Widmer. The trio competed for the George Teal Memorial trophy.

For the women Samantha Widmer had the most impressive showing with scores of 77, 77, 79 and 82 in the four rounds of play.

Widmer in fact had the third best score among the women golfers. She trailed only Monifa Sealy of Trinidad and Tobago (75, 75, 73, 75) and Patricia Garcia of Puerto Rico (74, 75, 70, 71).

Both Sealy and Garcia propelled their teams to second and third place finishes respectively in the women’s event.

Meanwhile the senior squad consisted of Tom Crawford and Bob Slatter as the duo went after the Higgs and Higgs trophy.

The senior team shot a 71 in the final round for their best score of the competition. Their overall score of 298 was only eight points behind Trinidad and Tobago for second place in the senior tournament.

The Cayman team consisted of 16 people with 14 golfers taking it to the tees.

Joel Dodson, Johnny Widmer, Robert Woods, Sean McEachern and Michael Wight competed in the Hoerman Cup (the main men’s title).

Trent Riggins and Colin MacKay represented in the Ramon Baez competition (a mid-Amateur event) while George Christie and Tracy Moore shot for the Francis/Steele-Perkins Cup.

The Cayman performance comes after two months of training at the North Sound Golf Club. The team practised fundamentals like driving, putting and chipping.

Cayman’s result at the Caribbean Amateurs is the second major showing at an international competition this summer.

At the Island Games Samantha Widmer brought home a bronze medal with a third place finish in the individual women’s event.

Notable local golfer Bob Slatter steadied the squad in Turks and Caicos with his wealth of experience. He has been playing in the Caribbean Amateurs since 1966 both for Cayman and Bahamas.

In regards to this year’s competition Slatter thought the Cayman team did decent on a whole.

‘The Cayman team was in every competition and finished middle of the pack. Unfortunately we didn’t have any winners but there weren’t any losers either.

‘The men’s team, who I thought would really do well, suffered an unexpected blow. Johnny Widmer didn’t play on the last day of the men’s event due to a family emergency.

‘A couple things hampered our play but all in all we had a great tournament at a great course.’

Some concern was expressed before the trip with Cayman’s ability to adapt to the course or possible playing conditions.

As Slatter says the course was a non-factor.

‘It was a very organized championship on a good golf course. It was windy but it didn’t stop us from having a good time shooting on the course.

‘Me and Tom had a bad nine holes on the last day but, then again, a lot of guys on the team could say the same thing.’