2018 Sheraton Fiji Denarau Womens Golf Classic Winner


Also enjoy a selection of our photos from the 2018 Sheraton Fiji Denarau Womens Golf Classic...with the Wednesday P = Pyjama Party, Round 1,2,3, P = Puzzle Welcome Function and P Party Final Dinner...


Denarau Rocks

By Denise Langdon PaR nz Golfing Holidays 

Over 200 golfers, family and supporters were hosted for 2 weeks in Fiji, by PaR nz Golfing Holidays in conjunction with their accommodation partner, The Sheraton Fiji Resort. 

The attraction – two great golf tournaments, the 2018 Sheraton Fiji Denarau Women’s Golf Classic now in its 16th year and the 2018 Sheraton Fiji Villa Teams Challenge now in its 18th year. 

Golfer entries were received from all around New Zealand and Australia in addition to a distinguished group of local Fiji members. The success of the formats and programmes endorse the growth of the two events with many players returning year on year. 

The Sheraton Fiji Denarau Women’s Golf Classic includes a welcome function, midway cocktails and a finale awards function. Fancy dress themes are becoming a ‘regular fun feature’ of the tournament.  The all-important golf includes a fun Ambrose starting round and then a 3-day pair’s event that includes Fourball, Foursomes and Combined Stableford. 

The Villa Teams Challenge which is a 4-person team’s event also includes 4 days of golf, all of which are played at the Denarau Golf & Racquet Club.  A modified stableford system is used, similar to the one originally used by John Cooper’s ISTAS scoring system.  The teams challenge is a mixed event and again themed evenings are included. 

‘Winners and grinners’, they say, and this year Sue Ross (Pahiatua) and Jane Williams (Masterton) took line honors in the girl’s tournament, with a 4-shot victory margin.  The Australian team called ‘Who Cares’ of Brian and Margaret Naylor (Cromer) paired with Suzanne and Colin McLean (Manly) won the Villa Teams Challenge by 5 points. 

Runner-up in the women’s was Dixie Horne (Mt Maunganui) and Heather Wray (Akarana), with Karen Heaven (Hauraki) and Orana Harris (Tauranga) in third place.  

Two teams were second-equal in the mixed.  Team ‘Timaru Tigers’ matched ‘Gun’s & Roses’ on 850 team points, 5 shots back from ‘Who Cares’.  The Timaru Tigers included Barbara O’Connell (Pleasant Point) and a previous Masters representative, along with Deb Lovett and Steve Pilcher from Gleniti and Stephen Ballantyne from St Andrews, Timaru.   ‘Guns & Roses’ was headed up by Nigel Fannin (Ngunguru) with Rose O’Brien (Ngunguru), with Wade and Helen Hunkin (Te Puke). 

The best placed Fiji Denarau members were Edwina Petersen and Tracey Duncan in the women’s tournament in 15th place.  Joy Leslie’s team ‘Full of Joy’ of Tiri Naylor, John Kemp and Terry Watson were 5th overall in the mixed tournament.  

For the women’s tournament, PaR nz Golfing Holidays was delighted to host for the week Susie Simcock who is well recognised as a past Board Member of the New Zealand Olympic Committee (NZOC) and a trailblazer for women in New Zealand sport. Currently, Susie is the chairperson of the Women and Sport Committee for the New Zealand National Olympic Committee. She is “tackling the issue of representation of women on the boards of New Zealand sporting organisations and is raising awareness around the benefits of gender balance and in decision-making”. Although Susie (Remuera) was in Fiji in a private capacity playing in the tournament as part of a holiday with her good friend Gay Pettit (Elanora), she easily joined in the competition and fun from the week. 

Naming sponsor for many years of both events, The Sheraton Fiji is due to undergo some dramatic renovations and changes in 2019.  Announcements were made by newly appointed General Manager, Nerraj Chadha on the extensive programme with the closing down of the Sheraton Fiji complex from June 2019 to complete renovation of the rooms, lobby, and restaurants. A year later, work is planned to follow on the Villas, Westin and the Denarau Golf Course.  The Sheraton Fiji, now part of the Marriott giant hotel brand is owned by Fiji National Provident Fund, Fiji largest financial institution. 

More details of the exciting renovation programme will be released as they come to hand but dates and Sheraton’s on-going sponsorship of both PaR nz Golfing Holidays managed tournaments have been confirmed.  The 2019 Sheraton Villa Teams Challenge will be hosted from the 10-17 August, following the 2019 Sheraton Fiji Denarau Women’s Golf Classic, on the 3-10 August. 

Entry forms and more details will be published in due course by PaR nz Golfing Holidays. Full results of the 2018 tournaments with photos, can be found on www.parnz.co.nz/news.