A top line up of New Zealand professional and amateur golfers have arrived at the Manawatu Golf Club this week for the $40,000 Lawnmaster Classic on the Charles Tour.


A top line up of New Zealand professional and amateur golfers have arrived at the Manawatu Golf Club this week for the $40,000 Lawnmaster Classic on the Charles Tour. 

While the Lawnmaster Classic has been run by the Manawatu Golf Club since 1985, this will be the third time it has featured on the Charles Tour.

On the back of the BMW New Zealand Open, leading kiwi professionals Mike Hendry, Mark Brown and Josh Geary will be among the favourites to take the title, currently held by Doug Holloway. 

While all three players made the cut last week with Geary only a few shots back heading into the final round and Hendry finding some form to charge up the leader board on Sunday, they were unable to mount a serious challenge for the title and will no doubt be looking to atone with a Charles Tour title this week.

Harry Bateman comes back this week to a course he has had success in the past and with a little more money in his back pocket after finishing as the leading kiwi last week.  Bateman performed well here last year and while still a rookie in the professional ranks looks to have the temperament to take his game to the next level.


While those four will be the favourites, young professionals Nick Gillespie and Ben Campbell will also fancy their chances on the tightly tree lined Hokowhitu course.

While the professional field oozes class, most of the leading amateurs in the country will tee it up alongside them ensuring that they won’t have it their own way in the race to the title. Fresh off winning the Bledisloe Cup as the leading amateur at the BMW New Zealand Open, Josh Munn will have the advantage of home course knowledge along with the burden of home club expectation in his attempt to win three Charles Tour titles as an amateur.

Tae Koh, Luke Toomey, Vaughan McCall and Ryan Chisnall loom as other amateur players with the ability to take out the title this year.

While the Women’s field looks to be a tightly fought battle between Wellington’s Julianne Alvarez and the Keh sisters Munchin and Wenyung, there will once again be plenty of interest in the performance of Bohyun Park, the 12 year old from the Gulf Harbour Country Club.

While the tournament kicks off at 7:45am on Thursday, all professional players were involved today in the Jeff Gray BMW Pro Am tournament with the leading six players joining Greg Turner and three other invites in the Horizon Golf Shot Out, a unique 9 hole event where a player is dropped at each hole until the final player standing takes out the $7,000 winners cheque from the $13,000 prize fund. The Horizon Golf Shoot Out starts at 2:15pm on Wednesday 18 March.



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