The Jamaica Golf Association (JGA) launched the prestigious 56th Jamaica Open Golf Championship earlier this week at the Constant Spring Golf Club in Kingston.

The championship will be held at the picturesque Tryall Golf Club in Hanover for the fourth consecutive year from October 29 to 31 with tee off at 7:00 am each day. The Pro-Am tournament is scheduled for Saturday the 28, the day before the championship starts and will feature the majority of the pro and the amateurs playing in teams, to share skills, generate camaraderie and introduce the course to the overseas based golfers.

The player categories include pros, amateurs and some of the island's outstanding juniors. Just under 50 players have completed their registration already including the defending champions, professional golfer Patrick Cover and amateur golfer Justin Burrowes.

Cover will be battling for his third win having copped the coveted trophy in 2019 when it was first played at Tryall and in 2022. Burrowes, on the other hand, already has three wins, having won the amateur section in 2019, 2021 and 2022.

So far entries have been received from the United States of America (USA), Canada, Australia and the Caribbean, namely Trinidad & Tobago and Barbados, and, of course, host country Jamaica. The playing format will be stroke play, 18 holes each day for a total of 54 holes.

This year's winner will bag USD$20,000 while the overall purse is over USD$100,000.

The JGA president Jodi Munn-Barrow, who spoke at the launch said that one can expect “a week of exciting golf as usual. Our defending champion in the professional Patrick Cover as well as our amateur champion Justin Burrowes, both have confirmed. They are going be under tight competition. Justin will have competition from the US and the Caribbean amateurs coming up to play him as well as our local amateurs. And of course the professional field is always good and they always have a very high level of golf."

Nunn also said the date was changed this year for a number of reasons.

“The dates that we were first considering were too close to the Thanksgiving holiday which tends to be more expensive, more issues with flights in and out of the US to Jamaica. In addition, an earlier date gives us a little bit extra daylight so we can start earlier or end later, especially if there is an issue that we have to delay play, then we have a little bit extra daylight to deal with, also if we get a larger field we can accommodate more golfers.”

Gordon Hutchinson, a former president of the JGA announced that administrator aficionado David Mais is the honouree.

“This year we thought that there were administrators who had made tremendous contributions and they should not be forgotten and David Mais is the one that first comes to mind. He has done a yoeman’s job over the years. He has never been a president of the JGA but he has assisted every president from the 80s come right up to the present, in administering golf tournaments to ensure that they are run properly,” said Hutchinson.

Mais was thrilled with the announcement.

“I am very thrilled, very excited (and) feel very honoured. I do appreciate the significance of what the Jamaica Golf Association has done because I follow some amazing people with this award, people like Seymour Rose, Biah Maragh, (Norman) Marsh, (and) Jasper Markland.

“They have contributed so much to the game. I am the first of the administrators to be awarded and so I hope that others will take this as a sort of opportunity for them to say that the work that we do behind the scenes and on the golf course, people are now beginning to understand how much work it is and how much responsibility you bear.”

Aqua Bay Resort returns as presenting sponsor for the fourth consecutive year. The other sponsors include TEF, Tryall, JTB, Digicel Business, Jamaica Tours, Grand Palladium, SDF, Fidelity Motors, Coldwell Bankers Reality Jamaica and Ultra Financiers Ltd.




The Jamaica Golf Association turned to its sport for a major fund raiser dubbed the Pink Ball Tournament which was staged last Saturday at the Constant Spring Golf Club.

The tournament raised approximately JMD$2 million dollars.

Twenty-two teams of three persons each teed off shotgun style at 8:00 am with the top five teams walking off with prizes and trophies while contributing with hefty entry fees of eight thousand dollars for each team member.

 The overall winning team of Rowena Coe, Cameron Coe and Michele McCreath, scored 127 to record a four-point win. The team of Peter Chin, Gregory Mayne and Emily Maybe posted 131 points for the runner-up spot. Third place went to the team of Bruce Lopez, LJ Holmes and Alison Reid who were just two points back on 133 points. Team Oliver McIntosh, Courtney Cephas and Carlton Hume and the team of Metry Seaga, Andre Foote and Mike Gleichman scored 134 each but were placed fourth and fifth, respectively, based on the competition rules.

 The returns from the fundraiser will be used to help to defray the costs to send the junior and senior teams to the Caribbean Amateur Junior Golf Championship and the Caribbean Amateur Golf Champions which will be held in July in the Cayman Islands and Trinidad, respectively.

 The budget to send the teams to the championships is close to JMD$ 10 million which means the Jamaica Golf Association's search for funds continues.

 Jamaica performed well in both championships last year while bringing back a number of category trophies.

Several sponsors supported the Pink Ball Tournament including BCIC, Sandals Foundation, KFC, S Hotel & Resorts , Fleetwood Jamaica Limited, Digicel Business and Tile City.




The first-round of the three-day Jamaica Golf Association national junior golf trials took place at the Caymanas Golf Club on Friday.

Ten players in the Girls 18 & under, Boys and Girls 15 & under and Boys and Girls 13 & under age- groups began their journey for a place on Jamaica’s team to the Caribbean Amateur Junior Golf Championship in the Cayman Islands from July 3-8. The Boys 18 & under completed their trials two weeks ago. 

The scores from Friday's action showed some very competitive match-ups.

Emily Mayne and Mattea Issa both scored five over par 77 to be joint leaders in the Girls 18 and under category. They each posted two birdies and seven bogeys on the day. 

Aaron Ghosh and Davin Hogan scored 83 and 98 respectively in the Boys 15 and under age-group while Anoushka Khatri shot 89 and Samantha Azan shot 94 in their respective first-rounds in the Girls 15 & under age-group. 

The three players in the boys 13 & under category, Kemari Morris, Shasha Redfelsen and Cameron Coe, are closely tracking each other after round one with scores of 85, 89 and 91, respectively.

The lone representative in the girls 13 & under category is Alessandra Coe who scored 91 for her first round. 

Second round action begins with all golfers teeing off at 9:00 am on Saturday. 

Rocco Lopez delivered three solid days of golf at the Caymanas Golf Club in St. Catherine to emerge atop a Boys 18 and Under group of eight players invited to the national trials for the upcoming Caribbean Junior Amateur Golf Championships scheduled for July 3-8 in the Cayman Islands.

In challenging conditions, Lopez carded two-over-par 74 on opening day, 72, and a one-over 73 on the final day of the trials, for a combined score of 219.

He was the only one to score par with Ryan Lue coming closest when he posted 73 in the second round. Notably, Aman Dhiman was the only golfer other than Lopez, to score in the 70s on all three days. He scored 74 to be joint leader with Lopez on the first day and went on to score 78 and 79 on the second and third day, respectively, to take the runner up spot in the trials.

"Conditions were tough. It was dry, windy, hot but I managed to make fun out of it and I had a good time," Lopez said after achieving victory.

Lue, who was two strokes behind Dhiman, placed third after ending the trials on 15 over par 231, with daily scores of 82, 73 and 76. Trey Williams was fourth spot with scores of 88, 78 and 79.

Noah Azan and Tenny Davis were joint fifth with identical three-day combined scores of 247 each.

According to Alison Reid, the convener for junior golf, the tournament is not the end of preparation. “Everybody goes on practicing. Now it’s even more important because now you have to sharpen up what you have been doing because we want to take the best team to the Caribbean Amateur Golf Championship so they have to keep practicing," she said, adding that she was satisfied with the level of play.

“There was solid golf. Some of them were a little disappointed and thought they could have done better but all in all I think it was good."

The selection committee will meet to select three players plus one reserve player for national duties in July.

The trials for Girls 18 and Under and Girls and Boys 15 and Under and 13 and Under age groups are scheduled for March 24-26 at the Caymanas Golf Club.


More than 60 golfers teed-off at the Caymanas Golf Club in St Catherine for the first Jamaica Golf Association's (JGA) qualifier for 2023.

Tee-time was 7:30 am.

A special feature of this year's tournament is that the eight competitors in the Men & Men Senior 0-6 (WAGR) category will play 54 holes over the two days in a bid to gain world amateur golf ranking points.

The Jamaica Golf Association (JGA) got approval last year to play 54 holes over two days instead of the normal three days in order to gain ranking points from the R&A and the USGA (Royal & Ancient Golf Club, Unites States Golf Association).

This will allow them earn ranking points quickly and able to participate in more tournaments across the region and the world that are open to ranked golfers.

Two of the local golfers that have world golf ranking points are Justin Burrowes (347) and William Knibbs (741). Both were invited to play in this year's Latin America Amateur Golf Championships in January as the two highest ranked amateur golfers in Jamaica at the time.

In this weekend’s tournament Burrowes, who is the defending champion, expects to be tested by the format.

"I am looking forward to get going this weekend. I haven't played a 54-hole tournament in two days since this tournament last year so I am looking forward to the test,” he said.

“Expectation-wise I try to keep it very simple. I just want to go out and execute as best as possible and count the scores at the end.  It’s going to be long but I think it provides a good test and it will show me where my game is at and where I need to improve on.

“I feel like I have worked on some of the areas where I have been weak on in the last six months so I am looking forward to put that to the test in a tournament and we will see how that goes."

The other six golfers who will compete in the Men & Men Senior category are Sean Morris, Zandre Roye, Trey Williams, Tenny Davis, Robert Sterling and Wayne Chai-Chong.

Roye and Knibbs placed second and third, respectively, in last year's tournament.

The remainder of the golfers on the course will play 36 holes over the two days.

The will play in several categories including Men & Men Senior 0-6, Men & Men Senior 7-12, Men & Men Senior 13-24, Men Super Senior 0-12, Men Super Senior 13-24, Masters, Junior Boys 18 and Under, Junior Boys 14-15 and Junior Boys 11-13.

Jodie Mun-Barrow is the defending Ladies champion.


Jamaica's golfing community has been thrown into mourning once more with news of the passing of stalwart and many-time national amateur representative Biah Maragh. Maragh represented Jamaica at the national senior level between 1975 and 1990 before retiring from competitive golf in 1991.

The stalwart of Jamaican golf passed on June 22 at the age of 73 and was buried on Saturday, July 23 following a service of thanksgiving at the Sandy Bay Seventh Day Adventist Church in Hanover.

"The Jamaica Golf Association (JGA) is saddened to learn of the passing of Biah Maragh," said Jamaica Golf Association President Jodi Munn-Barrow.

"Biah was a national representative for many years. He was the top amateur also for quite some time and performed well in our regional tournaments. It is sad to know that we have lost another stalwart in the game so shortly after the passing of Turo Ziadie. I extend sincere condolences to his family. I will miss him too. A lot of these players were those that I looked up to when I was a junior and who helped me in my junior career so Biah's passing on a personal note is also quite difficult for me."

 Maragh was honoured at the 53rd staging of the Jamaica Open Golf Championship at the Tryall Golf Club in Hanover, where he worked for 35 years at the time he was honoured in 2020. He also competed in the Jamaica Open a number of times.

Maragh worked at the Half Moon Golf Course from 1965-1968 and eventually moved to Kingston in 1974 to become the superintendent at the Constant Spring Golf Club. Over the years, he thrived due mainly to the support of his friend David Mais and successive administrations of the Jamaica Golf Association.

His contemporaries were Lee Edler, Seymour Rose, Garfield Sobers, Lindy Delapenha and Stafford DeMercardo.


Justin Burrowes, Sebert Walker Jr., Ryan Lue and William Knibbs form part of a 12-member Jamaica team named for the 65th Caribbean Amateur Golf Championships in the Turks & Caicos Islands from August 1 to 6.

Rocco Lopez and Owen Samuda have also been named to the team for which Aman Dhiman is the reserve player. Lue, at 15 years, is making his debut as the youngest male player while Samuda is 52.

Meanwhile, Emily Mayne, Mattea Issa, Cameron March and Winni Lau comprise the female team with Eryn Blakely named as the reserve player.  Issa at 15 years is the youngest female player on the team but has experience under her belt as this is her second time on the senior team.

The team was named after a rigorous four-day national senior trials played at the Cinnamon Hill Golf Course on the first two days and Half Moon Golf Course on the final two days.  Sebert Walker Jr. topped the leaderboard for the first three days and was ahead by 11 shots at the end of day two but faltered badly and gave up the advantage to Justin Burrowes who won by a stroke on the final play.

Emily Mayne shared the lead between herself and Jodi Munn-Barrow over the four days but ended up winning by eight strokes and ending the trials on 309.

Former player Dr. Mark Newnham will serve as team manager.

The ladies will also be trying to take their first hold of the George Teale Trophy.  Last year, while not fielding a full-strength team, ended in fourth place.

Jodi Munn-Barrow on Thursday was elected the first-ever female president of the 96-year-old Jamaica Golf Association and promised to expand the reach of the sport. Munn-Barrow replaces Peter Chin, who did not seek re-election after serving as president for the last decade.

Her executive includes Vice President Dr. Mark Newnham, Honorary Secretary Fred Sutherland, Assistant Secretary Bruce Lopez and Treasurer William Brown. Alison Reid is the junior golf chairperson while Dave Lyn, Michael Bradford, William Knibbs, Rowena Coe and Vikram Dhiman are committee members.

Munn-Barrow said she never dreamed of becoming president of the JGA which was formed in 1925.

"When I started my golfing career some 30-odd years ago, I never envisioned that I would ever take over the helm of this august body,” she said.

“I remember all of those who have done this before me and I have always looked up to them throughout my career.  I hope that I can make them proud as well as the members of the association and I look forward to working with all of the members in ensuring that the game of golf grows and continues to be very successful."

She said she wants to raise the profile of the sport so as to be able to attract international partnerships.

"I will endeavour to increase the optics of golf in Jamaica.  Some of the areas I would like to focus on include marketing Jamaica as a golfing destination through dialogue with the ministries of Sports and Tourism, reaching out again and having dialogue with the member clubs, trying to bring an AJGA (America Junior Golf Association) event to Jamaica thus lifting the image of our junior golf programme and also increasing the membership of the association by speaking with the presidents of other sporting bodies to try to get their members interested in golf as a second sport," she said.



Rising stars Justin Burrowes and Emily Mayne have been named among a 12-member team that will represent Jamaica at the Caribbean Amateur Golf Championships, scheduled for August 8-13 in Puerto Rico, where they will compete for the Hoerman Cup and George Teale Trophy, for men and women, respectively.

The Jamaica Golf Association (JGA) announced a 17-member team to the 34th Caribbean Amateur Junior Golf Championship scheduled for July 30 to August 4 at the Punta Blanca Golf Course in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

Four reserve players have been included in the team that boasts a mixture of experienced and new players and will compete in six age-group categories, three each for girls and boys.

The 18 & Under Boys players comprise Rocco Lopez, Michael Lowe, and Radino Lobban. Zaniel Knight is the reserve player.

Lopez, who is making the team for the fifth time, is the most accomplished player on the team, having won the Bob Slatter Trophy for 13 & Under Boys back in 2018 when the championship was held in Jamaica.

The two 18 & Under Girls are Emily Mayne and Eryn Blakeley.  Mayne will also be making her fifth appearance for the team while Blakeley is getting her third cap.

Aman Dhiman, Trey Williams, Ryan Lue and Noah Azan in reserve will compete in the Boys 15 and Under category.  Dhiman posted the second-lowest score of four-under-par 68 at the Caymanas Golf Club recently during the JGA's National Golf Championship won by Justin Burrowes.

Mattea Issa, Winni Lau and Mia Cunningham (reserve) were named to the Girls 15 and Under category.  Issa and Lau will each be making their fourth appearance at the championship while Cunningham is in her debut year.

The 13 & Under Boys category will see Aarron Khosh, Ramsay Wayner and Kemari Morris as a reserve player.  This will be Khosh's second time being named on the team and Morris' first. Wayner's listing on the team is provisional as he is 10 years old.  Due to his age, the likelihood he will play will depend on whether JGA gets permission from the Caribbean Golf Association.

The final age group category, the Girls 13 and Under will be filled by Samantha Azan and Anoushka Khatri.  This will be Azan's second time being named to the team but her first time playing.  She was selected in 2020 but there was no competition due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  Khatri is getting her first call up for the team.

Ryan Lue and Aarron Ghosh were also named to the team in 2020 but will be see playing time for the first time as there was no championship in 2020.

 The new players on this year's team are Zaniel Knight, Noah Azan, Mia Cunningham, Ramsay Wayner, Kemari Morris and Anoushka Khatri.

 Team manager Alison Reid has high expectations for the team. "The junior golf team for 2021 is actually a pretty strong team.  There are a lot of experienced players on it, players that have played three, four, five times so it bodes well from an experience point of view,” she said.

“We also have strong juniors in each age group so we at least have one strong player in each age group and then the second place person is also pretty strong."

Reid said that on this occasion there will be two coaches travelling with the team.

“Jonathan Newnham and Jason Lopez; I think both coaches bring different strengths to the table and I think those strengths can only help the team to be its best, both the actual game of golf to the mental game of golf, so we look forward to a very successful tournament."

Several golfers have in the past won age group trophies including Jonathan Newnham, Justin Burrowes and Rocco Lopez, however, the country is still looking for its first country trophy after placing second in 2018 at home and in 2019 in the Bahamas.



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