The Olympic shot put medallist is taking some time out in his early-season competition phase for his new-found passion of golf. Playing off an 11 handicap there will be plenty of interest in just how far the 125kg super-strong athlete can hit the ball off the tee.
Brash, brutal and brilliant to watch, Brendon McCullum could bruise bowling attacks like few other men in international cricket. Now retired his handicap of 9 will surely go even lower as he moves from the larger ball to the small white one!
Allan Border was for many years the captain of the Australian team and better known as A.B. Allan played in the 2014 & 2016 NZ Open, and is delighted to be returning playing off a handicap of 10.
Stephen Fleming is the highest run scorer for New Zealand in both Test Cricket and One Day Internationals. Renowned for his exceptional captaincy, Fleming is the most successful captain in New Zealand history and plays off a 7 handicap.
Ricky Ponting is one of the greats of Australian cricket having played more than 160 tests and 370 One Day internationals for Australia. Ricky is a scratch handicap player and a member at Victoria Golf Club.
The world famous Australian cricketer Shane Warne has described himself as a keen golfer who “doesn’t play anywhere near enough”. A true competitor however, playing off a 9 handicap will fancy himself to be in the mix come the business end of the Pro-Am.
Sir Ian Botham
A true favorite with the crowds and has previously played off a 9 handicap. The former English cricketer and now commentator continues his love affair with the NZ Open and Queenstown.
Very famous in Japan having pitched 21 seasons with the Yomiuri Giants, he is one of the few Japanese to play in the Major League Baseball for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Plays off a 6 handicap and looking forward to seeing him go deep into the outfield.
The former All Black is no stranger to the golf course on a 4 handicap and his son Ryan Fox a leading Kiwi contender. Having caddied several times for Ryan, this will be the first time playing alongside him with a significant crowd watching on.
Sir Russell Coutts
Has won Olympic Gold and the America's Cup five times. Spends most of his time overseas leading the American Oracle team, but when he can escapes to his home above Arrowtown that features a private 9 hole golf course. He plays off a tidy 14 handicap.
The Australian television personality and singer, is one of Australia's most seasoned entertainment hosts. Loves her golf and at her best plays off a 16 handicap, will be sure to add some glitz and glamour to the Pro-Am field.
Playing off a 15 handicap will be renowned celebrity television chef Josh Emett. He can handle the pressure in the kitchen, now it's time to see how he handles the heat during the NZ Open Pro-Am.
A former duel international in Rugby and Cricket, Jeff Wilson now spends his time on the Sky commentary team. Loves the whole NZ Open experience and plays off a very respectable 5 handicap.