08 Mar 2023 | Amateur golf |

Unusual preparation spearheading Singapore surge

by Dane Heverin

Caitlin Peirce tees off during The Athena's nearest to the pin challenge - where she hit the pin.
Caitlin Peirce tees off during The Athena's nearest to the pin challenge - where she hit the pin.

Skills challenges and four-hole match play contests are an unusual way to prepare for the Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific, but Caitlin Peirce is hopeful that her fun-focused lead in can be the catalyst for grabbing major opportunities at The Singapore Island Country Club this week.

Peirce took part in the innovative women’s event The Athena alongside Australian teammates Justice Bosio and Keeley Marx at Sandy Golf Links in Melbourne and she won the skills challenges component of the event which included a nearest-to-the-pin contest and a putt-off.

The tasks required throughout the skills challenge ensured that Peirce was dialled-in, but she also benefitted immensely from the experience of playing in front of cameras for every shot rather than only the odd occasion in prominent events she has competed in like the ISPS HANDA Australian Open.

The combination of performing under pressure and being able to practise at The Australian Golf Centre – which is located at Sandy Golf Links – with Golf Australia’s high-performance staff has Peirce up for the challenge of vying to become the first Australian to win the event and gain exemptions into the AIG Women’s Open, the Chevron Championship and the Amundi Evian Championship.

“I’m feeling pretty good about my game. There wasn’t a lot of traditional golf last week, but I’m feel pretty prepared and I’m looking forward to it,” Peirce said.

“I went to Singapore last year for the Queen Sirikit Cup and I loved it. So, it’s exciting to be back there and from playing in this event last year, I know that it’ll be a great test.

“It’s nice to be able to have that level of competition against the best people in the Asia-Pacific region. It’s a great thing to represent Australia and test yourself at that level.”

In addition to Bosio and Marx, Peirce will be joined by Sarah Hammett, Abbie Teasdale and Jazy Roberts in a fresh-faced Australian team.

Peirce, Bosio and Hammett featured in the 2022 edition last November – the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation and the R&A moved the tournament back to its preferred March timeslot this year – while Marx, Teasdale and Roberts are making their debuts representing Australia at regional level.

Nevertheless, the team are well versed in international golf.

Peirce toured the United States last year as part of her Karrie Webb scholarship, while Bosio made the quarterfinals of the US Girls’ Junior Championship.

Marx also headed across to the Pacific Ocean in 2022 to win the IMG Junior World Championship in San Diego and Teasdale triumphed in the English Women’s Amateur Championship. Roberts is the only member of the team yet to taste international competition.

Play begins on Thursday and concludes on Sunday. Click here to follow the scores.

Player bios

Justice Bosio

  • Age: 18

  • Club: Caboolture (QLD)

  • WAGR: 61

  • Best recent results: Runner-up Australian Amateur (2022 & 2023), Winner Keperra Bowl (2022), 11th ISPS HANDA Australian Open (2022)

Caitlin Peirce

  • Age: 20

  • Club: Royal Adelaide (SA)

  • WAGR: 123

  • Best recent results: Winner South Australian Amateur (2022), Winner Rene Erichsen Salver (2022), Winner Tasmanian Open Championship (2022)

Sarah Hammett

  • Age: 16

  • Club: Emerald Lakes (QLD)

  • WAGR: 128

  • Best recent results: Winner NSW Amateur (2022), Winner NSW Junior (2022), Winner Katherine Kirk Classic (2022)

Keeley Marx

  • Age: 18

  • Club: Heritage (VIC)

  • WAGR: 174

  • Best recent results: Winner IMG Academy Junior World Championship (2022), Winner Tasmanian Amateur (2022), Third Australian Amateur (2022)

Jazy Roberts

  • Age: 17

  • Club: Belvoir Park (VIC)

  • WAGR: 178

  • Best recent results: Winner Tasmanian Open (2023), Winner Murray River Junior Masters (2022), Runner-up Tasmanian Amateur (2022), Runner-up Victorian Junior Open (2022) 

Abbie Teasdale

  • Age: 20

  • Club: Royal Fremantle (WA)

  • WAGR: 188

  • Best recent results: Winner Concord Cup (2023), Winner English Women’s Amateur (2022), Winner Bowra & O’Dea Women’s Classic (2022), Winner Riversdale Cup (2022)

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