Duntryleague’s James Conran is shaping up as the player to beat at the New South Wales Country Championship which gets underway tomorrow at Bathurst Golf Club.
With defending Champion Josh Armstrong unable to compete due to a clash of dates with the New Zealand Amateur, there will be plenty of players ready to grab regional New South Wales most coveted championship.
This year’s Country Championship boasts an impress 45 golfers on handicaps of scratch or less, making it one of the strongest fields in the State outside of the NSW Amateur Championship.
Conran knows a thing or two about the par 71 inland layout; the 21-year-old claimed the 2018 Bathurst Open in a canter, which ironically, also earned him a spot in last year’s AVJennings NSW Open at Twin Creeks Golf and Country Club.
Others with a chance of claiming the title include Corey Lamb, the NSW Junior Champion, Jordan Ayre from Royal Canberra Golf Club and former Country Champions Anthony Brunero and Robert Payne.
Also held in conjunction with the Country Championship is the Interdistrict Teams Championship, with eleven districts competing for the Bruce Devlin Shield.
Defending champions, The Central West DGA will be tough to beat, especially with a home course advantage at Bathurst.
The Central West team includes Conran, Robert Payne, Current Bathurst Open Champ Mark Hale, Josh Campbell from Mudgee and the Dubbo pair of Nicholas Coggan and Lachlan Jones.
Making a return to the Country Championship for the first time in five years is the Murray District. The team from the border is a strong one, with the highest handicap of the six just 1.3.
Round one of the Country Championship will begin tomorrow at midday with a shotgun start, followed by a seeded shotgun start on Sunday from 8.00 am.