Jamaica made a final push on the last day of the recently held 66th Caribbean Amateur Golf Championship in Trinidad & Tobago at the Magdalena Grand Resort, in a bid to improve on last year’s standing but they came up a few points short.
Team Jamaica grabbed a trio of third places in the three trophies on offer. The men placed third in the hunt for the Hoerman Cup behind Puerto Rico and Trinidad & Tobago. They also came third in the George Teale Trophy for female behind the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. The country trophy, the Arthur Ziadie Trophy went to Puerto Rico, while the Dominican Republic was runner-up and Jamaica third.
The men ended the championship one position better than last year when they were fourth. According to Justin Burrowes the team captain “overall it was a god tournament. I think everybody could agree with that. We could also agree that we probably left a few shots out on the golf course but that’s golf at times. The main thing is that we tried our absolute best on every single shot straight down to the end.”
“Starting with myself, I know I left a few shots out there for sure and if you were to go around to all the teams, to all the players, everybody could say the same so can’t be too hard on yourself, can’t be too hard on the team because obviously we would have wanted a better result. At the same time third is still respectable in the Caribbean. We had a chance to come second but considering all the obstacles and the weather was absolutely terrible the entire time and for everybody to manage and get through that, it was pretty impressive. I am overall just happy with all my team members.”
William Knibbs who was the best placed Jamaican male in the championship came sixth. He was the only Jamaican to post an under par score. “It was a good week all in all. At times I struggled with my scoring throughout the first two days. I just couldn’t quite get the most out of each of my rounds but I kept on fighting and on the last day my perseverance paid off. I was able to put together a really solid round for myself and the for team and I couldn’t have asked for much more.” Burrowes as just two strokes back in seventh place.
The six-member male team were Burrowes, Knibbs, Rocco Lopez, Ryan Lue, Zandre Roye and Aman Dhiman.
Mattea Issa topped the Jamaican female team in fifth place which was three places ahead of Emily Mayne who bagged eight place. “CAGC is one of my favourite tournaments of the year. I always have a blast and so much fun so I was really looking forward to it this year. Being the defending champions there was quite a bit of extra pressure on our side so we knew we were going to have to work hard and stay calm try to offset that. The team did as best as we could and we managed to secure third place. Hopefully next year we can put in one hundred and ten percent effort and work towards being on top again” said Issa.
The Jamaica Golf Association president Jodi Munn-Barrow, who was a player in the championship said “I think team Jamaica performed very well. The boys performed spectacularly on the last day, came from fourth to third (and) almost came in on second place so that was a really good performance. The girls were steady. Mattea Issa did really well for the three days. Really pleased with the overall performance and I know it augurs well for the future events coming up.”
The female team members were Munn-Barrow, Issa, Mayne and Anoushka Katri.
Team manager Dr. Mark Newnham was also pleased with the team’s performance. “(It was a) fantastic performance from the best team Jamaica has had in the competition for a while. Enormously proud of the effort, particularly from the men who were in fourth, who narrowly missed out from second place after that fantastic charge on the last day.”
Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Trinidad & Tobago, Bahamas, Barbados, Cayman Islands, the US Virgin Islands and Jamaica were the participating countries.