Entries for historic tournament flood in

Queens Park Ladies Golf Club club captain Jo Raines with the Stead Cup, which will be contested...
Queens Park Ladies Golf Club club captain Jo Raines with the Stead Cup, which will be contested for the 100th time in Invercargill this week. Photo: Logan Savory
Former Invercargill mayor John Stead has a street named after him, which honours the Scottish-born man’s 32 years as an elected official.

But his legacy in Invercargill is not restricted to just that street which connects the city centre with Otatara.

In 1919, Stead, the father of former 1905 All Black vice-captain Billy Stead, presented a trophy to the Queens Park Ladies Golf Club.

At the time of the trophy presentation it was reported that: ‘‘if the tourney proves a success, an effort should be made to try to establish it on a permanent basis.’’

The tournament has become undoubted success.

The Stead Cup is  now the most historic and prestigious piece of silverware tucked away in Southland golfing cabinets.

Annually, Southland’s leading women’s golfers converge on Queens Park for a three-day tournament in the quest to get their hands on the Stead Cup. The 100th Stead Cup tournament will take place in Invercargill this week, starting tomorrow and finishing on Thursday.

The prestige  the tournament  carries has been highlighted by the close to 100 entries which have flooded in from golfers this year to play and help mark the milestone.

Queens Park Ladies Golf Club club captain Jo Raines believed this year’s field is probably  the largest field since the 1970s, when golfers went into a ballot for the chance to play in the tournament.

Robyn Boniface has developed the most impressive record, winning the Stead Cup on a remarkable 17 occasions since her first victory in 1980. Boniface’s mother Thelma was also a past winner of the Stead Cup.

Val Cullen also carved out an impressive record, winning the tournament 13 times.

Boniface will be back to try add her name to the  silverware but will have defending champion Angela Gerken to contend with. Olivia Frost is  also expected to be among the contenders. 

- Logan Savory

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