Men chase Pennant hat-trick

Unknown 2.36.34 PM

If Brisbane Golf Club’s Division One team can win the 2024 Men’s Brisbane District Golf Association Pennant, it will be a record-breaking achievement for the club.

Since being re-admitted to Division One in 2017, BGC has won the esteemed title four of the past five seasons – 2017, 2018, 2022 and 2023 – but has never achieved the rare hat-trick.

Pennant seasons in 2020 and 2021 were not completed because of Covid, and BGC finished third in 2019, the second year after re-admission. Until re-admitted to Division One, BGC had played in the top division just twice in almost three decades.

Last season BGC won the Pennant on a superior for and against, having tied Royal Queensland Golf Club with the same number of wins – four.

“We have done extremely well to left our performance to this level since qualifying for the top division eight years ago, and to win three times in a row would certainly be a rare feat in this competition. And, a result like that would underline the talent in our club,” enthused Chief Executive, Geoff Kuehner.

The new Pennant season tees off on Sunday July 14, with a first-up meeting with the very strong Royal Queensland team, to be played at RQ. BGC, RQ, Keperra and Indooroopilly – arguably the strongest four clubs in the BDGA – will contest Division One, with them meeting on a home-and-away basis over six successive weekends.

Each Pennant team playing in the BGDA competition consists of 21 players – five juniors (under 19 years of age), five masters (over 50), and 11 open-age (Senior) players, who are traditionally the best in the club.

The optimistic perspective of Geoff Kuehner is shared by David Ramen, BGCs Pennant and Elite Player Manager.

“This is the best team we have fielded in the 12 years I have been at the club, especially the Opens and Juniors,” he said.

“However, as is always the case with Pennants, it’s about managing the availability of players, and any disruptions we may have along the way. At various times key players will have other commitments.

“But the squad, always, is much bigger than the team.”

Two 18-year-olds, Billy Dowling and Kai Komulainen, are expected to play vital roles, as is Sam Howse who, according to David, is currently ‘flying’ after putting in a huge 12 months of hard work on his game.

Newcomers George Giblett, John Liston and Tony Cho are also key team members. Cho, a 13-year-old, recently shot a flawless five-under in the BGC Club Championships.

“Ash Sturmer will be our match-day captain, veteran Stephen Deane is contesting his 41st Pennant season as a key member of the Masters team, and will be joined for the first time by Steve Ward. And we will be looking for the true and tried Craig Mahon to continue his brilliant 85 percent winning Pennant record,” said David.

Mr Kuehner has urged BGC members to support the Pennant team, at both home and away matches.

“These players are representing our club, and are proud to do so. But I know it means so much to them when their fellow members are out there, on the course, supporting them,” he said.

“And that support may well be the difference in a tight match.”

Team announcements will be published on the BGC website on the Thursday before each match, with a match report to appear the following Monday.

The 2024 Pennant draw is:

Sunday, July 14, V Royal Queensland at RQ; Sunday, July 21, V Keperra at BGC;

Sunday, July 28, V Indooroopilly at IGC; Sunday, August 4, V Royal Queensland at BGC; Sunday, August 11, V Keperra at Keperra; Sunday, August 18, V Indooroopilly at BGC. – TONY DURKIN