Twenty-one outstanding junior golfers and organisations have been recognised for their achievements at the 2023 Jack Newton Junior Golf (JNJG) Presentation Evening held at Concord Golf Club overnight.
The awards celebrated the finest contributions to the sport over the past 12 months.
Two of the State’s foremost prospects, Riley Millers and Ann Jang, are the 2023 Junior Boy and Junior Girl Golfer of the Year.
Riley soared to victory in the 2023 Jack Newton International Classic and played a crucial role in the triumph of the 2023 NSW Junior Interstate Team and NSW Australian All Schools Championships.
Ann Jang also celebrated as the 2023 Junior Jean Derrin, claimed top honours in the 2023 National Order of Merit, not to mention her stellar victories at the Victorian Junior Open and the Australian Junior Amateur.
Ella Scaysbrook, winner of the 2023 Renay Appleby Memorial, triumphed in the NSW Junior and 2023 NSWCHS All School Champs, showcasing the effectiveness of the Jack Newton Junior Golf development pathway. Progressing from Regional Academy Programs to the Golf NSW High-Performance Squad, the 17-year-old also earned representative honours with Golf New South Wales and Golf Australia.
Sam Cascio, the Most Improved Junior Boy, earned recognition with victories in the NSWCHS All Schools Championship, Macarthur Junior Masters, and Ballina Junior Masters. Notably, he stood out as one of the few multiple winners on the JNJG Tour this year, solidifying his status as a premier junior golfer in New South Wales and showcasing significant improvement in his game.
Kiara Connolly-Jackson has been named the 2023 Most Improved Junior Girl. She went from a double-digit handicap to a scratch handicap in the space of 3 months and qualified for the scratch division of the Fayde Junior Matchplay for the first time. Not only did she qualify, but she also went on to record victories against some of the best junior girls in the state.
Harry Whitelock has been named the 2023 Junior Boy Master of the Masters. His remarkable performance included a notable nine-shot triumph at the Peter O’Malley Junior Masters in Bathurst. Additionally, he demonstrated his skill by securing victory at the Greg Chalmers Junior Masters at Shelly Beach, an achievement he has now accomplished in consecutive years.
Sienna Clarke, the 2023 Junior Girl Master of the Masters, started with a third place at the Brett Ogle Junior Masters, triumphed at the Blue Mountains Junior Masters, and achieved consecutive victories at the Peter O’Malley and Illawarra Junior Masters. Her season ended with top finishes, including a runner-up and playoff loss at the Ballina Junior Masters.
The 2023 Junior Vardon is awarded to Jake Riley. He played a pivotal role in the triumphant 2023 NSW Junior Interstate Team and emerged as the champion in both the Queensland Junior Amateur and Concord Cup. His commendable performance extended to securing multiple top-10 finishes in some of the most challenging tournaments across the country. As a representative of Australia in the Asia Pacific Amateur, the Newcastle junior made the cut, bringing pride to JNJG and New South Wales.
Camilla Kim is the 2023 Sub Junior Girl of the Year, showcasing consistent and effortlessly achieved victories throughout the year including an incredible five Junior Masters events. Her dominance extended to major events with an 8-shot victory at the A.C.T Week of Golf and a remarkable 22-shot win at the NSW Junior Championships 13 Years Division. To cap off her outstanding season, she outperformed older competitors to claim the overall title in the 2023 Jack Newton International Sub-Junior Classic, securing her first major JNJG trophy with more undoubtedly to come.
Harry Gourlay is named the 2023 Sub Junior Boy of the Year, marking a remarkable 12 months. Despite occasional injuries, the Bankstown Junior consistently vied for overall victories. After a playoff loss at the Jack Newton International Classic last year, he improved this time, securing his name on the trophy. Building on this, Gourlay continued his impressive streak with back-to-back victories in Jack Newton Junior Golf Major Events, including a dominant performance at the Fayde Junior Matchplay.
Harry Atkinson is the recipient of the 2023 John Kinghorn Memorial. His victory in the Fayde Junior Match Play not only earned him acclaim but also secured his spot at the Bonville Champions Trophy event for the sixth consecutive year.
Amy Squires, awarded the 2023 Outstanding Achievement, secured her first major victory at the Fayde Junior Matchplay and won the individual strokeplay section at the National All School Golf Championships. Her pivotal role in the NSW Team’s triumph earned her a spot in the Australian All-Schools Merit Team.
Jesse Linden, this year’s Under 12 Boy of the Year, won the 13 Years & Under Division at the Jack Newton Junior Golf North Coast Junior Masters at age 11. Returning at 12, he secured consecutive victories in major events, including the 2023 NSW PSSA State Golf Championships, and became the first international player to qualify for the Drive Chip and Putt National Finals, earning a spot at Augusta National in the lead-up to the 2024 Masters Tournament.
Sophia Chau has been named the 2023 Under 12 Girl of the Year. Sophia Chau, named 2023 Under 12 Girl of the Year, showcased exceptional talent, dominating in the Girls 11 Years Division at the Jack Newton Junior Golf State Age Championships. Her standout season included a 3rd place in the Girls 12 Years Division at the Jack Newton International and selection to the A.C.T Junior Girls Interstate Team at just 11 years old.
Poppy McLean is the 2023 Juniors on the Move Girl of the Year. In September, she participated in the Girls 9 Years & Under Division of the Jack Newton International 9-Hole Junior Classic at Singleton Golf Club. Despite being just 7 years old and feeling nervous in such a significant tournament, she secured a three-shot victory over some older competitors.
Kayun Mudadana was named the 2023 Players Player. The juniors have had the opportunity to vote for the person that they think is a role model in junior golf, a member whose dedication and commitment to golf are admired. The players alone determined who won this award.
The 2023 Juniors on the Move Boy of the Year is Charlie Jones. He embraced the JNJG Under 12 Tour, obtaining an official handicap at Toronto Country Club to compete in 18-hole events on longer courses. Flourishing in this challenge, his best performances were at the Wollongong and Wyong Under 12 Tour Events, where he broke 100 for the first time in JNJG Events, surpassing his handicap by 5 shots and earning the 10 Years and under Nett Champion title at Wollongong.
Chris Graham, awarded the 2023 Service to Junior Golf, serves as the PGA Head Professional at Ocean Shores Country Club. In addition to managing the Pro Shop, he coaches members, leads a popular Junior Clinic three days a week, and has been the Head Coach of the North Coast Academy of Sport Junior Golf Development Squad since 2017. Over the past five years, he has been a valuable asset to the Jack Newton Junior Golf Foundation, actively collaborating during the hosting of the NSW Junior Championships.
Chris Allen, named the 2023 Junior Golf Volunteer of the Year, has a longstanding dedication to golf in New South Wales. Since 2010, he’s been instrumental, serving as the inaugural Chairman of Golf New South Wales and holding key roles in various golf foundations and committees. He is also an accredited Club and State Rules Official and National Referee, actively contributing as a rules official for Jack Newton Junior Golf.
Steven Richard, the 2023 School Golf Deliverer of the Year, has been an active figure in PSSA Sport at various levels. Since 1999, he has engaged with school golf, progressing from roles at Leonay Golf Club to becoming the current New South Wales PSSA Golf Convener, a position he has held for over a decade. As a Jack Newton Junior Golf School Ambassador, he has played a pivotal role in school golf development.
Club Catalina Country Club earned the title of Jack Newton Junior Golf (JNJG) Junior Club of the Year. With extensive programs like Cadets, Junior, and Advanced Cadets, attracting over 60 participants, Catalina is committed to junior golf development. They host school golf days weekly and proudly support the TeeMates/Youth on Course initiative, making golf affordable for children at just five dollars a round. Additionally, the club generously hosts major events like the NSWPSSA Championship and the JNJG South Coast Junior Masters each year.
See the full list of winners below:
2023 Junior Golf Volunteer of the Year – Chris Allen
2023 Service to Junior Golf – Chris Graham
2023 Juniors on the Move Boy of the Year – Charlie Jones
2023 Juniors on the Move Girl of the Year – Poppy McLean
2023 School Golf Deliverer of the Year – Steven Richard (Bolwarra Public School)
2023 Junior Club of the Year – Catalina Country Club
2023 Under 12 Girl of the Year – Sophia Chau
2023 Under 12 Boy of the Year – Jesse Linden
2023 Most Improved Junior Boy – Sam Cascio
2023 Most Improved Junior Girl – Kiara Connolly-Jackson
2023 Outstanding Achievement – Amy Squires
2023 Junior Girl Master of the Masters – Sienna Clarke
2023 Junior Boy Master of the Masters – Harry Whitelock
2023 Junior Vardon – Jake Riley
2023 Players Player – Kayun Mudadana
2023 Sub Junior Girl of the Year – Camilla Kim
2023 Sub Junior Boy of the Year – Harry Gourlay
2023 Renay Appleby Memorial – Ella Scaysbrook
2023 John Kinghorn Memorial – Harry Atkinson
2023 Junior Boy of the Year – Riley Millers
2023 Junior Girl of the Year + 2023 Junior Jean Derrin – Ann Jang