Professional golfer for Timaru club

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Giving advice . . . Professional Willie Moore (left) provides some tips to Timaru Golf Club president Harvey King. PHOTO: CHRIS TOBIN

by Chris Tobin

After an absence of several years a professional golfer is set to return to the Timaru Golf Club.

Cromwell professional Willy Moore (33), of Moore Golf, will be open for business at the club’s pro shop this week.

Club president Harvey King said the need to have a professional was identified in a strategic plan the club prepared last year.

Until 2012 the club always had a professional.

“Willie approached us and we had a look at it but it didn’t work out for a start.

“We had a rethink and it’s now come to bear. It’s an opportunity to have a NZPGA professional coach here. We’re excited about it.”

Moore said the shop would be open seven days a week, staffed by one fulltimer and one part-time worker.

He would be travelling through to Timaru from his professional’s job at the Cromwell Golf Club where he had been for four years.

“I’ll be coming up to do the coaching every fortnight for professional coaching and club fitting.”

Moore said Cromwell’s population was growing and the “place was booming”.

“It’s easier to get members than probably it is with Timaru. The main issue in South Canterbury was there were too many clubs.

“Timaru has got some good momentum going and [is] doing some good things.”

He said the Timaru course had a great layout and was the premier course in the region.

“Being the premier course they get quite a lot of big events and the national masters interprovincial is here this year.”

Moore played as a professional on the pro-am circuit in Victoria, Australia, and worked as head teaching professional at The Hills course at Arrowtown before becoming a director at Cromwell Golf Club.

The Timaru club does not have a fulltime greenkeeper and relies on volunteer workers to keep it in order.

“All are volunteers and they are doing an excellent job.”

King said they had a group of eight who put in a huge effort. The club has a membership of 280. It is one of the oldest golf clubs in New Zealand and in September it will mark its 125th anniversary.