Jean Dahl - Courtesy of ‘Daily Examiner’
by Margaret Rickwood, Publicity Officer, Women's Grafton Golf Club Committee
At the ripe young age of 77, Grafton golfing legend Jean Dahl recently won her Club Women’s Championship for the 30th time, setting a record that will be almost impossible to break. To do it she had to defeat her niece, Janette Blair, in a three-hole play-off, making it a bittersweet win.
Jean Dahl spent her young days hitting a tennis ball against a timber wall with a tennis racquet, going on in her adult life to play A Grade Tennis, a sport she thoroughly enjoyed.
She took up golf at the age 33 when her children were starting School, having decided to join her husband in his chosen sport. In her first year she reduced her handicap from 36 to 18, and the following year, 1967, won her first Championship.
Jean went on to win further Club Championships in 1968-69, 1971-74, 1976-1985, 1988, 1992,1996 and 1998, 2005-2010 and 2012. She also won the Grafton Ladies Foursomes Championship 16 times, partnered by June Hackett 11 times, Renee Amos 4 Times, and Janette Blair once, and the Mixed Foursomes Championship 16 times, mostly partnered by Graham Dewberry.
Jean won the 36 Hole Nett event at Grafton's May Tournament in 1967, the year after taking up golf, and has won the Ampol Cup for the 36 Hole Gross Event 13 times over the following years.
She set a course record at Grafton with 73 shots in 1974 that stood for 26 years until it was broken in 2000. Jean has had 2 Holes- in- One to her impressive record, one on the 6th Hole in 1970, and one on the tough 12th Hole in 1988. Her lowest handicap of 5 was achieved in 1979 and still remains on of Grafton’s lowest markers.
Jean has also enjoyed considerable success in District tournaments, winning the Northern Rivers Open Championship twice, the Closed Championship twice and the Northern Rivers Foursomes Championship 5 times, the latest this year with her daughter Sue Reguson in Division 1
She has won the Northern Rivers Champion of Champions 3 times, the Scratch event at Forster-Tuncurry Oyster Bowl Tournament, and the Murray River Belt Tournament at Yarrawonga, Tocumwal, Cobram and Corowa.
In 1993 Jean captained Grafton’s winning Silver Pennant Team, and was a member of the team that won the District Division 1 pennant in 2001.
Her success has been well-recognised in the Grafton area, where she has won the "Daily Examiner Sports Star of the Year” Award 8 times.
Throughout her successes Jean has remained true to herself. Her demeanour on and off the course has been her greatest asset. She has the ability to enjoy her golf, is quick witted, and often can ply you with a yarn or two. To play with Jean is always to learn and she is a pleasure to play with, her famous “Dunkem” biscuits inspiring all to better golf. She loves competition and is always a worthy winner and gracious loser, but that hasn't happened much during her life.
May you achieve many more victories Jean. Congratulations!