Age is no obstacle for these nonagenarians

Ninety-seven-year-old Hazel Donaldson and 91-year old Olga Gerathy are happiest on the golf course.
Ninety-seven-year-old Hazel Donaldson and 91-year old Olga Gerathy are happiest on the golf course.

At an age when most nonagenarians have put aside all thoughts of participating in any form of competitive sport, two women continue to play 18 holes of golf at least twice a week.

Ninety-one-year-old Olga Gerathy and 97-year-old Hazel Donaldson wouldn’t dream of putting aside their precious golf sticks.

In fact Olga, who now hits off with a handicap of 32, recently ordered a new set of clubs and continues to hone her skills under the guidance of Forster-Tuncurry golf pro, Daniel Newton.

At one stage Olga got her handicap down to under seven.

She keeps fit daily exercising on her stationery walking machine for approximately three quarters of an hour 

It’s like walking to Tuncurry every day, Olga said.

Olga was introduced to golf as a 15-year-old teenager by her dad.

The passion continued following her marriage to Arch – who also was a keen golfer –  retirement and relocation to Forster back in 1968.

During her long playing career, Olga has enjoyed much success on the course, including winning gold during the Country Week championships a few years back.

She has served her club as both president and women’s captain, on the board or directors, and has been made a life member.

“I love the game and the challenge,” Olga said.

A sentiment shared by Hazel who began playing as a 52-year-old.

Hazel was working in a Central Coast pro-shop when the golf bug hit her.

The girls would come into the pro-shop after pennants, and I thought it would be fun to join them, Hazel said.

Golf certainly has been a family affair for Hazel; husband Jim was a keen player, son Bruce was a pro, and her daughters enjoy a hit.

But, golf wasn’t always Hazel’s sporting passion.

At one stage she played tennis.

“But, I like golf better; it’s a nicer game.”

Hazel advised frustrated budding players to persevere.

“It took about two years before my handicap started to come down.”

Hazel said golf was good exercise, she enjoyed the comps and getting out on the course with “the girls”.

When she’s not on the course, Hazel spends pleasure time in her garden.

During her long career, Hazel has been Forster C-grade champion and Tuggerah B-grade runner-up.