Down to the wire
By TOBY WALKER
A PLAY OFF was needed to decide the winner of the Women's Gold Northern Rivers Zone's annual tournament at Maclean yesterday and it was Armidale golfer Jeanie Doolan who emerged the victor.
It came down to a play-off between Doolan and Ocean Shores golfer Val Marsh after both players shot 171 over 36 holes after two days play at the Maclean Golf Club.
The sudden-death decider did not last long though, with Doolan making par on the first play-off hole to clinch the tournament's Open championship. It was a sweet victory for Doolan who only needs to travel as far as her holiday home in Iluka to enjoy it.
Murwillumbah's 16-year-old golfing sensation Brianna Malcolmson made an impressive showing but could not resurrect the form that made her last year's champion, placing fifth at the end of the day's play.
But while it was not to be Marsh's day in the Open championship play-off she still managed to find her way into the winners' circle, taking out the championship closed to members of Northern Rivers clubs.
Grafton's Melissa Clark placed second.
Helen Graney, of Maclean, took out the division two championship, Chris Picton, of Maclean, won division three, while A Biddle, of Maclean, was too good for the players in division four.
Women's Golf Northern Rivers secretary Carolyn Chester said the field of 126 players had some tricky greens to negotiate but felt the course had been blessed with perfect weather in the lead up to the tournament.