It is with great sadness that we reflect on the life of Pauline Sanderson who sadly passed away on Sunday 24 September, aged 95 years. Pauline was a Life Member of Kooyonga and had recently reached an outstanding 72 years of membership in June.
Pauline started playing golf as a 19 year old, joining Glenelg Golf Club where her brother was a member. Although always retaining her Glenelg Membership, after 4 years at Glenelg, Pauline was approached by Kooyonga Golf Club and asked to play Pennant Golf. In 1951 she joined Kooyonga and it was the start of a stellar playing and administrative career.
Pauline was a fine player with her short game being her forte.
In 1959 Pauline claimed the Kooyonga Club Championship and was runner up on numerous occasions over the years.
Pauline played 114 pennant matches for Kooyonga over 30 seasons from 1952 to 1983 and played in the winning team of 16 pennants. She won 74 of her own matches with a winning percentage of 65%. In 2017, the Women’s A1 Pennant trophy was re-named after Pauline as the “Pauline Sanderson Cup” in recognition of her astounding contribution to South Australian Golf.
Pauline was on the Women’s Committee from 1975-79 serving as Women’s Captain in 1978 & 79 and was awarded Life Membership of Kooyonga in 1992 in recognition of her significant contribution to the Club and golf industry.
Although she didn’t like to talk about it much, Pauline had also been very generous over the years in helping promote women’s golf with her own personal contributions. She was an advocate for junior golf and was one of the founding members of The Kooyonga Foundation since its inception in 2006. She has been formally recognised as a Partner on the Kooyonga Foundation Wall of Honour in light of her significant contributions.
In 2012 the Pauline Sanderson Bowl was initiated following her induction to the SA Golf Industry Hall of Fame. This event comprises of a team of 9 players from each Kooyonga and Glenelg, playing an annual match alternating between the two clubs and will continue to be played in memory of Pauline.
Over the years, Pauline combined her increasing commitments of golf with her own personal work, initially running a Motel, then with Amusements at Glenelg and The Royal Show.
Among many of her impressive achievements were the State Foursomes Championship and the State Mixed Foursomes Championship, winning both titles four times. She represented South Australia as a State Team member for 17 years, the final two years as a non-playing captain. She went on to be a State selector for 36 years, the Chair of Selectors for 10 years and served as President of Women’s Golf SA for 2 years from 1990-1992.
Internationally she led junior and senior teams in tournaments spanning the globe including Commonwealth Tournaments in Canada, New Zealand and Great Britain; The Tasman Cup – Junior and Senior Teams from 1985-89; World Cups (Espirito Santo) in Hong Kong (1984), Venezuela (1986) and in New Zealand (1990); and for the Australian Touring Team to South Africa in 1996.
She was a national selector and served at various times as Vice President or President of the Ladies Golf Union/Women’s Golf Australia. She was a recipient of an Australian Sports Award, Life Membership of Women’s Golf SA, an Australian Sports Medal and in 2012 was inducted into the South Australian Golf Industry Hall of Fame.
In an interview held with Graeme Agars in 2019, Pauline was quoted as saying “Kooyonga has been a community to me and has really made me feel like I am a part of something. The Club wouldn’t be what it is with only the golf aspect, there is a huge social component that allows you to still be a part of Kooyonga even when you’re not playing any longer or have reduced the amount of time you play. I really look forward to Tuesday’s when I come to the Club for lunch as it gives structure to my week and the feeling of still belonging.“
Pauline will be sadly missed by many members and those who had the honour of meeting her. The thoughts of Committee, Management and staff are with her family and friends at this difficult time.
An open funeral service for Life Member, Miss Pauline Sanderson will be held in the Centenary Room of Kooyonga Golf Club at 11am on Friday 6 October 2023. To assist the Club and family in planning for the service, please register your interest to attend by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, phoning the administration office on 8352 5444 or via the link below.
Please click through the below photo gallery to view some of Pauline’s special golfing moments;