Hastings, 11, teed up impressively

Five young players competed in St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands last week to represent Cayman in the annual Caribbean Amateur Junior Golf Championships and did exceptionally well.  

This event draws the best youngsters from the Caribbean region to compete over three rounds for top honors. The players compete in various age groups. The Cayman team was comprised of Justin Hastings and Aaron Jarvis (11-13 years), Joe Purton and Joe Ribbins (14-15), and Andrew Jarvis (16-17). 

For months they had worked extremely hard on their games with coaching from the professional staff at the North Sound Golf Club.  

They also played practice rounds at North Sound and Blue Tip to prepare for the challenge of playing a totally different course. 

Carambola golf course, where the competition was held, is particularly challenging, and made especially difficult by the very dry conditions. 

The hard work paid off. Cayman’s top performer was Hastings, who came second. At age 11, he is at the youngest end of his particular bracket. Aaron Jarvis was sixth. Andrew Jarvis, who is also at the younger end of his group, came fifth.  

Both players in the 14-15 age group acquitted themselves well, with Purton shooting the second-best round on day two and Ribbins improving his score in each round. 

Cayman Islands Golf Association president Paul Woodhouse said, “As all five only started playing competitive golf two years ago when Cayman hosted the regional tournament, the progress they have made over that short period is outstanding and is reflective of the success of the association and North Sound Golf Club’s junior development program, which now has around 60 children participating.” 

This is not the end of Hastings’s competitive golf this summer. He is hoping to build on this regional success when he takes part in the U.S. Kids World Championship in Pinehurst at the end of July.  

CIGA and North Sound Golf Club are running junior golf camps between July 14-17 and Aug. 18-21.  

Junior golf team, from left, Aaron Jarvis, Andrew Jarvis, Joe Purton, Joe Ribbins and Justin Hastings.