NEWCASTLE will have to wait another three years to get their hands back on the David Wood Trophy after going down to Illawarra in a tight tussle at Newcastle Golf Club.
The home side led 4.5-3.5 after the foursomes match play on Saturday. However, the visitors powered home in the singles matchplay on Sunday, winning 9-7 to finish overall winners 12.5-11.5.
Both sides consisted of eight seniors, four colts (under-21s) and four juniors (under-18s).
The David Wood trophy is a tri-annual match involving Newcastle, Illawarra, ACT Monaro and the Central Coast. Newcastle do not play Illawarra again until 2021.
Matthew Clarke, playing in the rep team for the first time, lead the way in the senior singles beating Dillon Humphries 6 and 5. Mark Rota (4 and 3) and Matt Lister (2 and 1) were the other winners. In the colts Troy Bouwer (6 and 4) and Luke Ferrier (3 and 2) had strong wins.
Hamish Ellison (3 and 2) was the only Newcastle junior victor .
* Newcastle young gun Josh Robards will start the NSW Junior Open full of confidence after winning the inaugural Greg Chalmers Junior Masters at Shelly Beach on Sunday.
Robards and Jye Pickin both opened with a 73 to be joint leaders entering the second round.
They traded the lead until the final four holes. Robards made a birdie at 15 to take the lead by a shot. Pickin then had a double bogey at 16. A two-putt par on 18 was enough for Robards to secure a two-shot victory.
Pickin's round of 76 was enough for him to secure the 16 years and over division.
Hunter golfers filled the top four spots. Kurri’s Camran Walton (78,73) was third at nine over, two shots ahead of Muswellbrook’s Josh Fuller (78,75),
Jake Riley (Toronto GC) won the 12 and 13 years by seven shots.
* Entries have opened for the NSW Country Championship, which will be held at Goulburn Golf Club on October 6-7.
* Leigh McKechnie finished in a tie for 15th at the 72-hole $55,000 Rockhamptom Pro-am on Sunday. McKechnie carded rounds of 69,75,69,75 to be level par, 19 strokes behind winner Jacob Boyce. Boyce won by eight shots.