Top News

P.E.I. golfers begin player-of-the-year series today at Avondale

Tim Yorke practises his putting before a round earlier this season at the Countryview Golf Club in Fairview.
Tim Yorke practises his putting before a round earlier this season at the Countryview Golf Club in Fairview. - Jason Malloy

P.E.I.’s most prestigious golf event of the season will go ahead this summer.

The Prince Edward Island Golf Association (PEIGA) has been granted approval to host the Cooke Insurance P.E.I. amateur championship July 17-19 at Andersons Creek Golf Club in Stanley Bridge.

The amateur was initially scheduled to begin on Friday but had to be delayed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19 strain) pandemic. The PEIGA was given the OK by government to host the competition and its player-of-the-year series on Thursday morning.

“I think people are going to be pleased. I think people are going to be happy to finally have the answer,” said PEIGA president Melissa Castle. “It’s been kind of so up in the air. We’ve been trying to push forward as though it’s going to happen without really having that confirmation.”

The amateur rotates to a different member courses annually and the trophy with the winners’ names on it dates back to 1933.

“It would have been a big disappointment, for sure, to miss out on this year,” Castle said. “We're all happy that we’re going to be able to go ahead.”


Schedule

A look at the confirmed stops on the Prince Edward Island Golf Association player of the year series.

  • Avondale Open Today and Sunday
  • Mill River Open July 11-12
  • Cooke Insurance P.E.I. amateur championship - Andersons Creek, Stanley Bridge, July 17-19
  • Island Open - Belvedere, Aug. 22-23
  • Harvest Moon - Brudenelle/Dundarave, Aug. 28-29

The first stop on the player-of-the-year series is the Avondale Open, a four-ball format taking place today and Sunday at the Vernon River course.

“It’s exciting,” said Tim Yorke, a Kensington resident who has played on the tour for 27 years and is a member of the PEIGA tournament committee. “At least now, people have something to look forward to.”

He said it’s been a “crazy year” and having events to prepare for will hopefully keep people motivated throughout the summer. 

The amateur was used in previous years to help select players for national championships, but that won’t be the case this year. Golf Canada has cancelled this year’s nationals due to the pandemic.

“Players on the Island still like to compete for the sake of competition, so I think there’s still lots of people anxious to get out,” Castle said.

Tim Yorke
Tim Yorke

And there are bragging rights on the line as the province’s top golfers prepare to shoot low in an effort to have their names added to the trophy with the Island’s all-time greats.

“I kind of hope people get back to that,” Yorke said. “Winning your provincial title is a big deal.”

Online registration for the amateur has been extended until Friday, July 10, at www.peiga.ca.

Entries have been down, but some wonder whether golfers were waiting to see if government would approve the event before they registered.

“I hope that’s the case,” Yorke said. 

With the Avondale Open pushed back about a month and word that golf courses have been busy this spring, scores could be lower than when the event traditionally occurs.

“I think they’re going to be good. I think the golf course is in phenomenal shape,” Yorke said, and “guys should be sharp.”

There will be some changes due to the health restrictions. It includes no award presentations after the competitions, but Yorke said they are necessary changes to ensure the events go forward. And while they have cleared the first hurdle, all golfers must adhere to the rules to ensure the events continue throughout the summer.

While the nationals won’t occur this year, the Maritime Cup men’s championship is still on the docket. It will take place in Amherst, N.S., Sept. 25-27. New Brunswick is the defending champion, while Yorke is the captain of the 12-member Island squad.

Island golfers gain points through the player-of-the-year series, which are used to help select Team P.E.I. for the Maritime Cup.

RELATED:

Did this story inform or enhance your perspective on this subject?
1 being least likely, and 10 being most likely

Recent Stories