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Lee, Kalz reach benchmark status

Min Woo Lee and Jackson Kalz
Min Woo Lee and Jackson Kalz are benchmark athletes for 2018.

Perth's Min Woo Lee and Adelaide's Jackson Kalz have become Golf Australia benchmark athletes on top of some outstanding results.

Lee, 19, reached Tier 1 benchmark status when he recently reached the quarter-finals of the World Super 6 Perth, a tier one event on the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia.

This follows the Royal Fremantle Golf Club member having reached the top 15 of the World Amateur Golf Rankings based on some excellent results through 2017.

Kalz, who has since turned 18, reached Tier 2 status as a junior having won two national junior events (Vic Junior Open and Vic Junior Masters) and his top-four finish at the IMG Junior World Championships last year.

The South Australian state representative will, in midyear, start his US college career at Iowa State University. Golf Australia will work with Iowa State to integrate his development process.

Lee and Kalz become the fourth and fifth athletes to reach benchmark status since Golf Australia introduced the criteria early last year when Travis Smyth, Grace Kim and Josh Armstrong met the requirements.

The benchmark athlete status enables extra benefits for both players over and above their existing funding and support through Golf WA and Golf SA, respectively. They retain their new status until 31 December.

Among a range of additional benefits, they will get a stipend for travel to international tournaments, more funding towards coaching fees and sports science expenses and a subsidy towards playing professional events.

Golf Australia high performance director Brad James was excited with the pair's progress and to be able to help their future development.

He also said it was a great example of how the new nationally co-ordinated "benchmark athlete" model worked.

"Those two, along with all other high performance squad members in the state programs around Australia, already receive funding and other `home-base' support as they develop," James said.

"In this instance, their benchmark status is additional backing on top of that provided by the Golf WA and Golf SA HP programs.

"We are excited to see both athletes take the next step in their careers."

See and for more information on the Golf Australia high performance program.


Posted by Robyn at
27/02/2018 02:41 PM
Well said Sandy!
Posted by Sandy Jamieson at
26/02/2018 09:40 PM
Fantastic news for both Lee and Kalz lots of hard work from both them and their support staff, the bench marks are set high and the rewards match their efforts. I am however concerned for Matias Sanchez who if I am not mistaken also reached the bench marks late last year but because he opted to stay with his own coach and support staff hasn't been officially recognised by Golf Australia for achieving. Keep in mind he won the Silver medal in the Australian Open and shared the silver medal in the Victorian Open with Zac Murray. In my experience it takes someone who is willing to be different to the pack to succeed and I would hate to see Matias miss out because he was willing to be different. As Brad James mentions above for their efforts they will receive additional support in travel coaching and help in professional events. As this funding comes from the Australian Sports commission (tax payer money) and from affiliation fees payed buy the golfers of Australia it should be awarded to those who achieve regardless of their coach who buy the way is accredited by the sports commission. I am concerned for Matias not just to see he has all the opportunities he deserves financially but also how must it feel to see these two great players getting all the support of Golf Australia and he is ignored publicly and not even mentioned mental health must be taken into account. High performance is simple it is about getting results not ticking boxes so whilst I congratulate Lee and Kalz I stand and applaud Matias for doing it his way on an unlevelled playing field that I feel is a greater achievement. The game at the top is hard enough please get behind this young man

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