Ballarat’s Mathew Ashton scores two holes-in-one in 2022 Rotary of East Warrnambool competition | The Courier

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CHIPPING in for worthy causes is the main reason Mathew Ashton hits the Rotary of East Warrnambool hole-in-one competition every day of his holidays. Scoring aces is an added bonus. The Ballarat-based self-confessed “cricketer at heart” has sunk two holes-in-one this summer to go into the running to win a car on Australia Day. “I have done it before three years ago too,” Mr Ashton said. “I couldn’t get any nearest the pins and this year I have hit so many buckets (full of balls) I’ve hit two hole-in-ones and a nearest the pin. “It is through excessive hitting, not good golf.” Mr Ashton, 51, has camped in Warrnambool for 12 years and been a regular at the foreshore golf competition for eight of those. “It is doing exercise, having fun and getting to know the Rotarians,” he said. “I really enjoy it and I like what they do with the money. I am very impressed with their organisation and I love donating the money anyway so I have no problems with going down there everyday. “A lot of times I go down morning and afternoon and then help them pick up the balls at the end of the day and have a quick chat to them all and then head back to the caravan park.” Mr Ashton, who is one of 12 Ballarat regulars at the competition, is imploring south-west people to support the event as visitor numbers drop due to COVID-19 isolation rules. “The parks aren’t very full at the moment; it’s the least I’ve seen in the parks since I’ve been coming here,” he said. “Hopefully the locals can get right behind the competition and keep the money coming in. “What they do with the money is just incredible.” Mr Ashton, who still plays cricket for Wendouree when required, said the sport didn’t come naturally to him. Having a go and contributing to multiple charities was his motivation. “I am not a golfer, I am just somebody who enjoys playing the competition,” he said. “I am a cricketer at heart and I just play golf for fun and for the challenge to play-off for the car.” The hole-in-one competition will run everyday until the finals on Wednesday, January 26. If you are seeing this message you are a loyal digital subscriber to The Courier, as we made this story available only to subscribers. Thank you very much for your support and allowing us to continue telling Ballarat’s story. We appreciate your support of journalism in our great city.


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