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PNGA Player of the Year Mary Parsons named to Canada’s 2019 Astor Trophy team

Mary Parsons of Delta, B.C. is one of four players named to Canada’s 2019 Astor Trophy team. Parsons had previously been named the 2018 PNGA Women’s Player of the Year.

Mary Parsons hits a tee shot (photo by Jurgen Kaminski)
Mary Parsons hits a tee shot (photo by Jurgen Kaminski)

The four athletes selected to represent Canada at the Astor Trophy competition, scheduled for Aug. 29 – Sept. 1 at Royal Colwood Golf Club in Victoria, B.C.

The other three players joining Parsons on the Canadian team are Noémie Paré of Victoriaville, Que., Emily Zhu of Richmond Hill, Ont., and Brooke Rivers of Brampton, Ont.

The Astor Trophy competition is held every four years between teams from Australia, Canada, Great Britain & Ireland, New Zealand and South Africa. Each country is represented by four female players and each country contests foursomes and singles match play in a round-robin format.

The athletes selected by Golf Canada for the Astor Trophy were determined based on an assessment of world rankings and head-to-head results among those with a declared intent to compete.

The 20-year-old Parsons recently competed at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru, where she was part of Canada’s bronze-medal-winning mixed team. Parsons also finished fifth in the women’s competition in Lima. She is a junior at Indiana University, where this past spring she won her first collegiate event at the Lady Boilermaker.

She was a semi-finalist this summer at the PNGA Women’s Amateur Championship. Parsons won the 2018 B.C. Women’s Amateur Championship, the 2016 B.C. Junior Girls Championship and is a former member of Golf Canada’s National Junior Girls Squad.

Paré, 21, is heading into her senior year at Barry University in Miami Shores, Fla. Paré qualified for match play at the 2019 British Women’s Amateur and tied for second at the 2019 Quebec Women’s Amateur. She tied for 27th at the 2019 Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship at Red Deer Golf & Country Club.

Zhu, 15, is a member of Golf Canada’s National Junior Girls Squad. She finished third at the 2019 PGA of Canada Women’s Championship, placed 12th at the 2019 Women’s Porter Cup and was second at the 2019 Ontario Women’s Amateur. Zhu recently won the 2019 Canadian Junior Girls Championship at Lethbridge Country Club.

The 14-year-old Rivers finished eighth at the 2019 Ontario Women’s Amateur Championship and was runner-up in the 2019 Ontario Women’s Match Play. At time of selection, Rivers was the sixth highest ranked Canadian female on the World Amateur Golf Rankings.

Matt Wilson of Newmarket Ont., Golf Canada’s Next Generation Director and National Junior Girls Coach, will coach the Canadian team at the Astor Trophy competition.

The Astor Trophy has been contested every four years since the inaugural event in 1959. It began as the Commonwealth Trophy and the name was changed to the Astor Trophy in 2007 to allow Irish players to compete on a Great Britain & Ireland team.

Australia won the event when it was last contested in 2015 at the Grange Golf Club in southern Australia. Canada has won the Astor Trophy on two occasions, in 1987 and 1979. Canada last hosted the Astor Trophy in 1999 at Marine Drive Golf Club in Vancouver.