Rotorua Boys' High School's young golfers have a wealth of potential and Te Puke Golf Club's Jared Pender may just be the man to take them to the next level.
The Raukura Golf Academy runs two levels of membership, an Elite Academy and a Development Academy and Pender is the school's new director of golf. Pender has had a taste for developing other players in his current role as head professional at the Te Puke Golf Club and was eager to do more.
"I've been really getting into coaching in Te Puke and enjoying it," Pender said.
"Seeing the talent that is around, I'd like to give back to the juniors because I was once one of them. I've seen some the boys here play in Te Puke a few times and there is definitely some talent," he said.
Last year Rotorua Boys' won the Super 8 and Bay of Plenty Intercollegiate titles and Pender has a CV which suggests he can help them continue that success.
He is a fully qualified NZPGA Class A Professional with eight years of tour play under his belt and is a former Bay of Plenty and New Zealand representative.
"My goal is to get the boys performing as well as possible, on and off the course. I want them to see the other side of golf, it is just a sport but I want to try to use my knowledge to help them get the best out of their game.
"Winning nationals would be the big goal. I just need to really make sure they know their game and that they're practising right. It's no use just going to the course and hitting balls, it needs to be productive and in tournament conditions," Pender said.
He said for a young golfer to make the most of his potential he needed to be "very easy going, able to accept anything and hard working".
"It's pretty selfish in a way, but if you want to get to the top in golf you have to have time away by yourself and a lot of time practising. But, if you can enjoy it while doing the hard work, get that good balance, the results definitely come, it's just like life."
Like most Kiwis, Pender tried a range of sports as a child before settling on golf.
"I played rugby, cricket, tennis, swimming and then we moved next to the Tauranga Golf Course. I started playing and training and got really good really quick, so I was hooked."
Rotorua Boys' High School's director of golf Jared Pender:
Bay of Plenty and New Zealand representative
Eight years of tour play
Fully qualified NZPGA Class A Professional
Head Professional at Te Puke Golf Club
Five wins from 15 Tournaments in 2018 on the New Zealand Pro Circuit