Samoa Open attracts international talent

Samoa’s annual golf tournament invites professional and amateur golfers alike to participate in the country’s largest golfing event. 

Professional Golfers’ Association (P.G.A.) professional, Grant Binns, returns to Samoa from Sydney, Australia, after competing in previous years. 

Binns has played golf for about 20 years and currently joins P.G.A. Tour Winner Andre Stolz, Rugby Union Professional, Adam Ashley-Cooper and Rugby League Star, Jamie Lyon, as an ambassador of the Kooindah Waters Golf Club. 

Binns’ return to Samoa is not unexpected as the pro-golfer has “been here around 10 times, to play golf and catch up with old friends made here”.

Zach Churcher is also a member of Kooindah Waters Golf Club and returns to Samoa for the second time. Churcher attributes Samoa’s appeal to the ability to holiday whilst playing golf. 

Although conditions such as grass and humidity vary from golfing conditions at home in Sydney, Churcher states that he plans to “still try to play the same game everywhere but obviously when the grass is a bit different you have to change your technique a little bit”.

At only 22 years old, Churcher has already played golf for 12 years, an influence which can be attributed to his father being a professional P.G.A. golfer, Mark Churcher. Mark Churcher also coached Grant Binns earlier in his career, which is how Binns and Zach Churcher initially met. 

Both competitors enjoy the Open so much that they have even enticed friends to attend, including the operator of South Coast Golf Academy in Wollongong, David Sadd. 

Sadd has been playing for 35 years and recently won a New Zealand Open as an amateur. Just like his fellow golfers, Sadd also attributes his start in golf to his father stating “I used to play all sports and then my dad took me to the course after school one day and that was it – addicted. It’s all I’ve done ever since”.

Having arrived in Samoa for the first time on his friend’s recommendations, Sadd says he has already enjoyed the “beautiful people and nice weather - course is in good nick too”.

As a P.G.A. professional, Binns believes there is potential for Samoan golf and although there may not be many golfers, there are definitely improvements over the years stating “didn’t get this many people back in the days and it’s certainly getting better. Every year they’re improving.”

The three friends and competitors already plan on returning together for next year’s Golf Open.

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