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Australia's Top 100 Golf Courses - Golf Digest 2002

From Golf Digest magazine - March 2002

Golf Digest Top 100 comment - by Darius Oliver
The biannual Golf Digest Top 100 Golf Courses in Australia ranking's has been released with little change at the top but plenty of controversy and interest throughout the rest of this years list. A number of prominent debutants feature plus the usual hard luck stories and a number industry favourites who have missed selection.

The Top 8 courses in this years list remained virtually unchanged with Royal Melbourne still topping the list from Kingston Heath, New South Wales, Metropolitan and Royal Adelaide.

Most exciting for the golf industry was the flying debut of the new Moonah course at the National which shot straight into the nation's Top 10 courses at number 9. ausgolf hailed the courses arrival back in October 2000 and in recent months both Digest and Golf Australia have ranked the course in their Top 10. Surprising to some will be the National's other new course, the Thomson, Wolveridge, Perrett designed Ocean course which debuts at number 40.

Great news for the purists with the Links at Kennedy Bay changing name to the Golf Club Kennedy Bay and jumping 23 places into 10th position, a fitting results for a wonderful golf course. Another big improver in the West was Secret Harbour which shot up to 27th place, while the second best debut went to Glades on the Gold Coast which finished 17th.

Greg Norman Golf Design can be well satisfied with having designed the leading two debutant courses but bemused by the continual poor performance of the Grand in these ranking's. The charm and challenge of the Grand was clearly lost on many judges, while the firms other new Queensland course Pelican Waters debuts at No. 86, doubtless a result of the troubles with diseased greens during November when many judges saw the course. Look for great improvement in the year's to come.

The most celebrated slide belongs to Huntingdale which has slipped from 16 in 1998 to 41 in 2002, a further damning indictment of the course upgrades carried out over recent years. Huntingdale wasn't the only Melbourne course to slide down the list with Spring Valley and Long Island both dropping significantly and Keysborough dropping a full 30 places to 97.

The other hard luck story for mine was Bonville which despite continuing course improvements slides further down the list to No. 49. Few social golfers would leave Bonville out of their favourite 10 courses yet the ranking's criteria continues to hurt this beautiful course.

Regulars who are missing in this list include Pacific in Brisbane (74 in 2000), Riversdale in Melbourne (77 in 2000), Paradise Springs (92 in 2000) and Narooma (96 in 2000).

The judging panel for the 2002 Top 100 list included ausgolf's Selwyn Berg and Darius Oliver. Enjoy this years list, always a great source of healthy debate and controversy, and please send any feedback to info@ausgolf.com.au.

AUSTRALIA'S TOP 100 GOLF COURSES

2002 2000 COURSE

1 1 Royal Melbourne, Vic
2 2 Kingston Heath, Vic
3 3 New South Wales
4 4 Metropolitan, Vic
5 5 Royal Adelaide, SA
6 7 The Lakes, NSW
7 6 The Australian, NSW
8 8 Victoria
9 - The National (Moonah), Vic
10 33 The Golf Club Kennedy Bay, WA
11 10 Royal Sydney, NSW
12 9 Royal Canberra, ACT
13 12 Kooyonga, SA
14 11 Lake Karrinyup, WA
15 14 Laguna Quays, QLD
16 13 Hope Island, QLD
17 - The Glades, QLD
18 15 The Vines, WA
19 17 Commonwealth, Vic
20 21 Newcastle, NSW
21 20 Terrey Hills, NSW
22 18 The National, Vic
23 22 Woodlands, Vic
24 24 The Dunes, Vic
25 16 Mount Lawley, WA
26 19 Sanctuary Cove (pines), QLD
27 38 Secret Harbour, WA
28 23 Joondalup, WA
29 41 Lakelands, QLD
30 30 Royal Hobart, Tas
31 25 Yarra Yarra, Vic
32 27 Hyatt Regency Coolum, QLD
33 31 Tasmania
34 28 Portsea, Vic
35 35 Grange (west), SA
36 36 Meadow Springs, WA
37 29 Barwon Heads, Vic
38 40 Peninsula (South), Vic
39 54 Concord, NSW
40 - The National (Ocean), Vic
41 26 Huntingdale, Vic
42 32 Twin Waters, QLD
43 34 Horizons, NSW
44 43 Camden Lakeside, NSW
45 37 Horsham, Vic
46 44 Paradise Palms, QLD
47 46 Capricorn, QLD
48 - The Heritage, VIC
49 45 Bonville, NSW
50 47 Capital, Vic
51 42 Kooralbyn Valley, QLD
52 55 The Grand, QLD
53 53 Murray Downs, Vic
54 51 Grange (east), SA
55 50 Yowani, ACT
56 48 Sun City, WA
57 - Links Port Douglas, QLD
58 52 Kingswood, Vic
59 39 Long Island, Vic
60 60 The Links Lady Bay, SA
61 49 Spring Valley, Vic
62 63 Royal Queensland, QLD
63 64 St Michael's, NSW
64 69 Federal, ACT
65 56 Arundel Hills, QLD
66 57 Indooroopilly (west), QLD
67 59 Albany, WA
68 61 Great Lakes Tuncurry, NSW
69 70 Araluen, WA
70 60 Bunbury, WA
71 65 Cottesloe, WA
72 - Tallwoods, NSW
73 61 Royal Pines (East), QLD
74 83 Cranbourne, Vic
75 93 Noosa Springs, QLD
76 58 Sorrento, Vic
77 62 Robina Woods, QLD
78 72 Bonnie Doon, NSW
79 78 Alice Springs, NT
80 81 Glenelg, SA
81 80 Millicent, SA
82 82 Castle Hill, NSW
83 66 Cape Schanck, Vic
84 76 Warnambool, Vic
85 - Lakes Entrance, VIC
86 - Pelican Waters, QLD
87 79 Ocean Shores, NSW
88 86 Mount Broughton, NSW
89 89 Southern, VIC
90 73 Yarrawonga (murray), NSW
91 75 Cobram-Barooga (Old), NSW
92 92 Monash, NSW
93 85 Killara, NSW
94 91 Liverpool, NSW
95 - Port Fairy, VIC
96 87 Pymble, NSW
97 67 Keysborough, Vic
98 98 Bribie Island, QLD
99 88 Palm Meadows, QLD
100 94 Ulverstone, Tas