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ISSUE 10 MAY 2012 PP17714/04/2013(032168)

R O T C U R T S N I E F I L OF

A MALAYSIAN EXCLUSIVE PGA Master Professional JOE THIEL

OPEN FOR PLAY


AT THE RISK OF BURNOUT THE TEAM Chief Golf Writer Edward Saminathan

At the start of every calendar month, I will compile a list of events that The ClubHouse team needs to cover for both our online and print platforms. I must say that during certain months, it is a tiring task just merely thinking about the number of golf events - be it junior, amateur, the occasional ladies and seniors as well as professional tournaments both in Malaysia and Singapore that we are obliged to attend.

Sub-Editors Lina Abdul Wahab, Khalidah Jamil Evelyn Gan

Having said that, you can understand why I am concerned or even disconcerted after looking at the congested schedule of amateur and junior events during the upcoming school holidays later this month.

Contributors Andrew Myles, Bradford Walterhouse , Jason Winter, Justine Moss, Mark Bates, Normas Yakin, Richard Fellner, Scott Kramer, Shaun Moulds

I am worried about attending at most, two days of each alternate event while some of our youngest stars may well be playing for three to four days straight of competitive golf at one tournament; they will then head for another tournament without any break for a good two weeks. These kids do not seem to be getting a real ‘break’ from their academic pursuits.

Official Photographer T. Ravi Chitty Brand Manager B.N. Murali Art Director Siva Yoham Jalaguvalan Operations Associate Suzila Afirah Abdul Rauf The ClubHouse Magazine is published by

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I do not intend to put the blame on anyone for scheduling back-to-back events during the holidays - it is the perfect time of the year but it is nonetheless something that needs proper discourse especially on the part of parents and the organisers. I feel it is absolutely critical, and I echo the calls by SportExcel’s golf coordinator T. Ravi Chitty (who doubles up as our resident photographer) as well as some of our nation’s top coaches when I say that parents should be more selective about the number of tournaments, in which our junior golfers participate every year. Some may argue that playing more tournaments is the only way forward for their children to build match temperament and gain playing opportunities. However, I also feel that many of our juniors are running the risk of fatigue, both physically and mentally as well as suffering from burnout, serious injury and stress management issues. Too many parents enrol their children into top-notch state amateur events although it is obvious that their kids are not ready for the challenge. In fact, they may be better off honing their skills with their coaches or playing at lower levels. This is an observation based on the scores posted by some of our juniors in such events. One of the world’s top players Rory McIlroy admits that he needs to cut down on his tournament commitments by a quarter this year. This is to not only keep his body fresh for the Majors, but also prolong his golfing career. Perhaps the time is right for our own McIlroys-in-the-making to consider the same move.

Edward Saminathan Chief Golf Writer news@theclubhouse.com.my

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INSTRUCTOR OF LIFE One of the few golf instructors in the United States to have earned the PGA Master Professional distinction, Joe Thiel leaves behind a profound effect when he speaks. A consummate teaching professional with an A-list of disciples including the likes of US Open champion Pak Se Ri Pak, US amateur champion and 19-time Tour winner Michiko Hattori as well as six-time JLPGA leading money winner Yuri Fudoh among others, the veteran golf guru opens up about his climb to become one of the world’s top accelerated performance coach and the works behind Mizuno’s proven golf curriculum in this Malaysian exclusive. By Edward Saminathan

Images by Arep Kulal & B.N. Murali


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Thiel demonstrating a chip shot during a Mizuno Golf Schools camp for elite players at Bukit Jalil GCC recently.

L

ast year, I had the chance opportunity to have dinner with PGA Master Professional Joe Thiel, who was in Kuala Lumpur in his role as the Instructional Director for Mizuno Golf Schools. Over the course of a sumptuous buffet spread at one of the capital’s swankiest hotels, Joe (as he prefers to be called) cajoled, joked and regaled me with tales from his four decadelong involvement in teaching some of the top amateurs and professionals in the world. Not one to shy away from sharing his knowledge and experience, Joe dropped many anecdotes on his faith, his calling, his love for golf and its players as well as life. I would be lying if I said I didn’t go home a changed man after what I would describe as the shortest two-hour chat in my life. That faithful September night has always stayed in my mind - a life-altering moment full of inspiration and motivation - from a great

man that I will best describe not as a golf coach but an ‘instructor of life’. Fast track a few months and after much persistent effort, Joe agreed to this personal interview during his recent visit to Malaysia.

How did you journey in golf?

begin

your

Well, this can be a negative story as well. I grew up in the little town of Sharon in Pennsylvania - it was a steel mill town of 16,000 people back then. And typically, everyone that lived in our community was a mill worker - poor, not a whole lot, certainly, not enough for golf for goodness sake. In 1916, a very wealthy but childless steel magnate by the name Frank Buhl, who about owned the town and the whole of state of Pennsylvania [he spend much of his wealth and time in benefit of the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) of Sharon and also build

huge parks for communities to enjoy] set upon building a nine-hole golf course for the kids of Pennsylvania to play for free, forever and put enough money in a trust account to take care of that tract until today. And when I was 10 years old, someone handed me a couple of used Sam Snead Signature clubs with a flat grip on the backside [I wished I still had those]. So, I would go to that golf course [Buhl Golf Club] and in order to get out of my parents’ arguments at home at that time, I would leave at 5.30am before anyone got up in the summer time and I would come back home when the church bells rang at 5.30pm. My parents would rather have had me stay home and do my chores - much to the consternation of my two brothers and sisterbut I would take enough money to buy two Hostess Sno Balls (cream-filled chocolate cakes with marshmallow coating and coconut flakes) and a bottle of RC Cola - that’s all I had for the whole day to eat. And I stayed on that golf


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“There’s no finer game

than golf ever created. You know Michael Jordan played golf in my facility (PGA Golf Center in Olympia, Washington) one day and he had this to say: “I was an average baseball player and arguably, one of the better basketball players but golf I hate this freaking game, it’s so hard; tough game.” That coming from an athlete which they said could ‘fly’, a man which gravity did not bother.

course for 12 hours and I fell in love with golf. Pretty close to Sharon was the town of Latrobe, Pennsylvania - the birthplace of Arnold Palmer and his family owned the Latrobe Golf Club there. And I proposed that “I was going to dethrone that man, I will go and kick his tail and take him to the cleaners that Arnold Palmer”. That was my goal. My friends didn’t play golf since no played golf in our school and I got my hands on the rest of the Sam Snead Signature from that kind gentleman and I would go out there and play golf with three people in my mind - Ben Hogan, Walter Hagen and Arnold Palmer. And I had matches with them in my mind - and I never lost those matches. I have since gone back to Sharon and taken a drive to find out how far I walked each day - it wasn’t that far, probably a couple of miles - but I walked with my little bag and it never bothered me. I didn’t care that it was far

because I couldn’t wait to get there! And I was there everyday that I could go.

How did you get into teaching? I became a prolific junior champion in my state and I was self-taught, just like most kids back then. I won pretty much everything that was to be won in Pennsylvania. And then I started playing professionally and I found out the hard truth that there were some better players out there from the whole country - a whole lot better. And I conceded that Arnold Palmer was quite good - he was pretty good after all. But I knew from 10, what I was going to do for a living though I honestly thought it was going to be playing. To support myself to play, I had to make some money. So how do you make money when you’re not making lot of money playing. So I had to teach and I started teaching at a young age.


And I fell in love with teaching and the reason behind it is not just because its golf. For fourty years, I have opened a door each day, gone in and taught golf to all these people because I’ve made it such a way that I can’t wait to get there each morning. And the reason is because I can leave an impact on somebody’s life. And not only that because we not only teach at that same place because teaching golf has allowed me to go to other places, we go around the world to all the different continents - so there’s so many avenues that a great teacher gets to move in, to make this the finest job ever created by God.

Were there any regrets that you didn’t make it big on the playing circuits? Oh sure, certainly, absolutely! I felt like I had to justify - so, the tendency was to justify. I wish, no I don’t wish, I am happy because I am in my calling I believe. This is probably my intended

Was the financial rewards and the fact that the money was good in golf instruction ever a precursor in your career choice? There is a book that all the teachers I teach in America have to read and I mean they have to read, PERIOD! Do what you love and the money will follow. Do it well and a lot of money will follow. Don’t worry what type of car you’re driving, you want to drive a Mercedes Benz, it might happen but push it too hard, and your entire life will be centred on driving that car. That I believe answers your question.

After fourty years of teaching, I’m sure you have developed a teaching style of your own? Well the older you get, the more you can see. I can see any person go to the driving range, take three or four golf swings and I know

“Coming from my less than privileged background, I could only enroll for a technical degree and I studied Cobol programming and what I learned in that programme was that I didn’t want to do that. I didn’t want to sit behind a desk. I wanted to be on a golf course.

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calling. Had I been a professional player, I would have had to been more ego-centred and ego-centric because a player has to be about himself - let’s face it - about how I am going to get better, what am I going to do, what about me, me, me... A teacher has to give it all away, so in that case, I think I am in the right calling but I would still love to have had played The Masters, but then again, had I played The Masters and I did not make the halfway cut, I would still have been disappointed. Had I played The Masters and I never played on that final group out on Sunday, I would still have been disappointed. So, I am disappointed that I didn’t maybe have some of the opportunities that others may have had. So I dedicate myself to influencing these kids I teach to be great kids and students, good husbands and wives, great human beings, men and women of significance in this life and at the same time, knock down some great players.

immediately what they need to be a good player. So, you develop an eye, I think, for the various aspects of the golf game. I believe that has given me the ability to call myself a highly accelerated performance coach. Accelerated performance means intelligent instruction that can by-pass a lot of stuff that other people have to go through because you know you don’t have to be in the area because they got it. Why do you mess with a kid’s swing path and launch angle if he’s got a pretty decent thing going on? When you can accelerate into the mental side of their game and develop their routines double fast than somebody else. That’s a mark of a good teacher.

Any philosophies that you hold close to your heart? Golf cannot be who you are, it should be what you like to do. When I go for social functions, I don’t like to talk about instruction - what a sad state of affairs if all I could converse about was teaching golf!

Golf cannot define you, the more golf defines you, the less your chance of realising your level of greatness. Your definition of who you are and your purpose in life has to be bigger than a golf ball. Lot of people get so dragged into golf, that it is who they are, so much so that their self esteem is in their score. And you are not going to be a happy person, let me tell you. Out of 35 tournament events, on a average, how many can a Tour player win? Not many, I betcha! Become a significant person - each one of the kids I teach has to fill out not only their goals but also their personal statement of who they are - their mission. Your mission has to be bigger than you. “Why golf?” I ask all children that come through my doors. And their purpose better be smart - it better not be because some kid in my programme has beat their fanny on the golf course - because it makes golf easier if your purpose is right. Is golf a tough game? It’s fair to say so. Golf is not a difficult game to enjoy, if you’re social golfer but it’s a tough game to be really good at, it takes a person who has got that drive.


Golf happens to be what you do but it should not be your mission in life. I want every child that passes through my doors to become a man and woman of significance, to make an impact in their communities, some may even go on to lead their nations, who knows!

Mizuno) at any time. That’s unusual in Japanese tradition, even more because I’m a gaijin (outside person in Japanese). And I think its because I’m crazy and also because I’m not a staff-type of person. I like that I can talk to the top guy at Mizuno if I want to.

You’re a strong church-going Christian man and you believe that golf instruction is God’s calling for you. How does your faith influence the way you teach?

Mizuno has been an understanding partner because they are using me at a level in which I can be of help to them. I have never had a bad experience with them.

When you put your tee on the ground, you don’t push it into the ground to finish second - that’s not in the Bible but its paraphrased a bit by Joe Thiel. I am not afraid to share what I believe in my faith. And I tell parents during the interview process that I don’t preach but I will teach your children to have faith. Because out of faith comes goodness. Out of faith comes honour. Out of faith comes integrity. Out of

From Mizuno’s viewpoint, our decade-long partnership with Joe-san has been one of trust and confidence in his teaching philosophy, which mirrors Mizuno’s corporate philosophy of giving back to society through sports.

And she cynically suggests: “Here’s what we’ll do - let’s built the Joe Thiel Room of Excellence and we’ll bring all the guests that come to our new home into your trophy room and you can explain to them how great you are. ” This is right before the wedding and I’m wondering “What in the world did I get myself into!” So, they didn’t end up in a trophy room or in the garage, I gave them all away. We’re not of trophies, even if at that point in life, it seemed like it was my whole life. So, Susie was right - she’s always right - it took me a couple of years to get over it. I still have a couple of plaques and trophies in the office and my wall’s full of photos I have taken with my students but nothing at home.

Morimitsu Andachi - Mizuno Corporation Senior Manager (Asia Ocenia)

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faith comes love. That’s what we promote. I’m always saying “I can’t help but tell your son/ daughter that, sir, even if you’re Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu - it doesn’t matter.

You are now entering your tenth year in association with Mizuno Corporation. Describe the partnership from your eyes as Mizuno Golf Schools’ instructional director and one of the company’s leading consultants. I was invited by Mizuno because I think while they had a solid foundation programme, they saw the need for a higher level for players that wanted to go forward. And that’s how I began involved in crafting out the curriculum to do that. Our relationship is so good - they treat me so well. I can go into the Mizuno Corporation headquarters in Osaka, knock the door and have a chat with Akito Mizuno (chairman of

You have been voted a threetime PGA Teacher of the Year and nominated as one of the top 100 coaches in the United States by leading golf publications. Did you ever strive for awards and recognition? The Bible teaches that “we are of no reputation”. So, if ever, it was never about me and awards. Maybe as a young teacher, it made a difference because it helped me get that better player but soon that trophies meant very little. To be fair, accolades don’t inspire me anymore because I don’t want to be about that. One of the lessons I learnt early on (I was 23 or 24 years old then) and I need to thank my wife of 39-years Susie for that. We were moving into our first home together (it was two-room apartment) and I had packed all the trophies I had won and she comes into my apartment and asks me “What are you going to do with all these trophies?” And I say “Well, I’m taking it with us to our new place.”

“What a game. There is a biblical saying “what you do, if you become excellent at it, you will do it before Kings and Queens”. And I do it before Kings and Queens, not because I am any good but because I am just blessed to be able do it.


Thiel shares a light moment with Winnie Ng and her father as Mizuno Golf Schools instructor Victor Lim looks on.

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BEING A GOOD GOLF PARENT

“To stop a parent from watching his kid play sports in the worst punishment we can unleash on parenthood.”

I

believe in bringing the parents into the teaching process. Parents are always involved, taking notes and learning how to be a good golf parent and to be a good role model. Too often parents are invested in their children’s game, which is a big mistake. Parents have to be invested in their children, not into their golf score. Parents have to learn to become a good golf parent by not demanding a number, not comparing their children with the other kids and to make golf enjoyable, because when golf becames enjoyable, it become a priority for a kid, then they can soar big time! We put the parents and kids together as a team, not only in golf but also in their home. Let me give you an example, each time I take a new junior golfer under my wings and I interview the kids together with their parents, more often than not, the kid, with his or head bowed down, will confess that he/she doesn’t like her parents watching him/her play golf. And the usual answer is “because everytime I look at them, they’re so disappointed in me.” At this point, the big bell rings in the parents’ ears and it’s the parents turn to bow their

heads. I’m looking at the parents and I say “This is what you have created because all you wanted out of your kid was a score.” That’s a big problem and so I have to teach the parents so that the kid wants mom and dad to come watch him/her play. It involves teaching the parents how to react, so that they don’t have to hide behind that big tree or stay out of the way because they think their kid doesn’t want them to watch. So, we are helping them to become a normal, solid family unit again and for them to understand how to raise that child to want to play golf We’ve had situations in our school where husband and wife changed their relationship because the golf will divide a mother and father because one spouse is always going to be pushing the child over the edge and the other is going to resist and the parents are having their own pow-wow half the time. In this programme, we train them, you’ve probably never heard about it but it is important, because if you want that kid to become an elite junior, he has got to have a home environment that’s elite. Parents are at the heart of the programme - they are there taking notes at training and tournaments

and they go home at discuss about that. Not go “What did you shoot today?” Golf should not be the priority, the kid is the priority. Parents need to learn to ask good quality questions, for example: ” What did you learn out there today, how was your short game, did you follow your mental thought processes as instructed by your coach?” Parents, if you’re reading this, please throw the score aside. This is not your game, this is your son’s game. Your self esteem does not revolve around your son or daughters’s score. Your pride in the community is not about your son or daughter winning tournaments. So, when a parent comes up to me and says that “We didn’t play well today”, I turn around and ask the parent “Did you play today?” As much as parents want to be seen as a team with their kids, they should never take over their child’s score as their own. And most importantly, support every other kid that plays with your own children because if that other kid becomes great, there is every chance that your child wants to be great too.


“I want my players to win but why do I want them to win? For my notoriety? No, I don’t want no notoriety - I want them to win for their enjoyment and for them to see where they want to go with their golf.

“I want to impart my 40-year experience to these young men, so that they have a headstart in developing that eye for wisdom.”

community - what she was able to accomplish with her golf, giving birth to a whole generation of Korean lady professionals - she gave them that opportunity and more importantly, raising the bar for the women of Korea. And I look at the little kids that I (I hate to use the word I) have been able to raise up from little kids to Tour champions and consummate professionals, that’s so fun to be involved with them. But my biggest excitement has come from the junior golfers I taught who grew up not to be Tour professionals, who graduated from college and become involved in different fields and contribute to their respective professions. These kids still email me, still drop by to have a chat - it’s amazing. That’s why teaching is fun.

Are there still career goals that you want to achieve? Pretty much the same but the Mizuno platform has given me the opportunity to go into different societies and take this programme to more people and be able to start more children who don’t have the resources to realise their potential. Every year, my best friend Bill Rogers (1981 Open Championship winner) and I go around the world, we go to different locations in a different country every year to instruct to children and golf instructors for free. Our last programme was in Argentina and so, I enjoy that. I’m a relentless type of guy, I don’t know why God made me this way but he made me this way and that’s just who I am. I want to be very best at what I did, so I’m a relentless learner, a relentless pursuer of excellence. So, even to this day, I still take instructions online from a new mental performance coach each time

- I spend money and I study with a new guy each year. That is important and why is that important, you may ask. So I study like a wild man and I teach my player and my teachers to become better than you ever dream possible by studying. So, our job is to study and to listen - I believe every teacher in the world has something good to say - you can learn from him or her. Might not be much from some of them, some may just offer one good thing, that’s great, but if you think you’re better than them, you’re going to miss out on that one nugget of information that might make all the difference.

Any of your students left a permanent mark on you? You can’t help but use Pak Se-ri as an example. Her ability to findly see golf as something wonderful as opposed to something that her dad pushed her so hard into and what she contributed to the Korean ladies golf

Only so many people can make it on Tour but I hate to call it a Plan B. Your goal should be to go as far as I can go in golf, who knows it might take you into a dental career!

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“I have not arrived. I am still learning, still processing. I want all my people - students and teachers to be great human beings.

Right now you’re moving in golf, just keep going and if you get a bit stuck in the future and you have the greatest teachers and people on your back and you see there’s something else that’s good for me, go and get yourself some kind of education and be someone of significance. Be a prepared man and see where life takes you. Golf will take you to places that you would never have dreamed possible.

Any thoughts on retirement? No, I would never retire. Retire to what? What would I do? Sit and watch television? Nah...

Any advice you would like to give to a junior golfer who is climbing up that very same steps that you did all those years back? Who do you want to become in life? What do you want to tell your own children someday? So, you tell the absolute truth, if your golf ball moves after you have addressed it, you call over your partners and tell them the truth. And people will respect you more than they respect maybe anybody else because you’ve told it on yourself. Become a man or woman of integrity, never go about telling the wrong thing. Same thing about lying, lying also will come back to haunt you. It will come back and bite you. You say an untruth to somebody and you start something, it will come right back and you will have to start lying about your life.

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Soon, you will have a trail of garbage and a man or woman that don’t tell the truth on their scorecards, that’s who they become in life. You one to became a great human being, so drop your pride and play the game the right way with a high level of integrity. So, that when people see you on the golf course, they’re going to say “You see that kid there, son, I want you to be like him.”

MIZUNO GOLF SCHOOLS: MORE THAN JUST GOLF

I

think Mizuno separates itself from the others in many different ways. First, golf is not our priority, eventhough the outcome is our players’ winning. Life is our priority, so we use golf as a means to help somebody become a great human being. There’s perhaps no better platform in the world that teaches character more than golf. Today, we have children, who due to parental pressure, coach pressure or peer pressure that they don’t want to embarass themselves, so what they do is that they cheat. Kids will do about anything to putt a number down

and not telling the truth. Unfortunately, there’s several things that happen here; their friends who play golf with them who know that they’ve put an incorrect score down, they’re afraid to turn them in because that’s their friend. Mizuno is able to teach the character development programme like no other school can - that’s so important. Second, our programme brings parents and children together. Parents today, not all of them - forgive me, many parents today have lost control of their children. So the kids

talk back to their parents or say something negative to them or don’t perform what their parents would want them do or don’t try hard enough at school. The Mizuno programme is a great programme for the kids to be in to learn that they have to do the things necessary to be good children and good kids at school. They have to bring their report cards to their golf teachers, the teacher has to assess how their doing at school and talk to them and their parents on how we can balance their golf and school better.


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WHERE GOLF HAPPENS

www.theclubhouse.com.my


MALAYSIAN GOLF ASSOCIATION

ABEL REIGNS AS MATCHPLAY KING

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ohor’s Abel Tam was in imperious form as he clinched the North Malaysian Amateur Open in style at the Royal Perak Golf Club (RPGC) on April 22. The 20-year-old Tam topped the leaderboard after the opening two rounds before dispatching fellow stablemates Mohd Afif Mohd Razif in a semifinal playoff. Tam then claimed the victory with a resounding 4&2 triumph over Chan Tuck Soon (4&3) in the final match-up. The burly Chan had earlier seen off the challenge of local favourite, Low Khai Jei by 3&2 in the other semi-final. It was the Johorean’s first victory in 2012, and he admitted that playing in the ‘high occasion’ of the Maybank Malaysian Open had done him a world of good. “I definitely had to take my game to a higher level for the Malaysian Open. I am pleased that I was able to sustain the form and secure an amateur title after a long time,” said Tam, who sank a 20-foot birdie putt on the 13th to move into a commanding fourshot lead which he held on to claim the victory.

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© TDSportPhoto

LEE, LOY TRIUMPH IN MIRI

© Miri Golf Club

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ee Ka Tung proved that he still had a few tricks up his sleeves after overcoming a young field to win the 43rd Sarawak Amateur Open at Kelab Golf Miri on April 29. The seasoned campaigner from Sibu made full use of his familiarity with the windy conditions at the course. He notched rounds of 78, 75 and 73 for a 226 aggregate to claim the title by four strokes ahead of

newly crowned Sabah Amateur Open winner Paul San and Jordan Mobi John. Thirty-six hole leader Solomon Emilio Rosidin slumped out of contention after seeing his threestroke advantage coming into the final round disappear with a poor closing of 84. Johor youngster Loy Hee Ying continued her rise to prominence, as the national Elite player surprised pre-tournament favourite

Nur Durriyah Damian to lift the title of ladies’ division with a nine-over-par 225 total. Loy, who trailed Durriyah by two strokes coming into the final round, closed with a final round best of two-over 74 against the latter’s 77 for a slim one-shot victory. Miri’s Jaclyn Chen took third place after totalling 232.


MALAYSIAN GOLF ASSOCIATION

AFIF SEALS MEMORABLE MALAYSIAN AMATEUR CLOSED VICTORY

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ational player Mohd Afif Mohd Razif clinched his biggest amateur win to date after storming to a seven-stroke victory in the Malaysian Amateur Closed Championship presented by Vasetti on May 4.

The 17-year-old northerner, who had also triumphed at the National Trials earlier in the year, finished with a three-day total of two-over par 218 (71-75-72) at Templer Park Country Club ahead of teammate Low Khai Jei (77-77-71). Amirul Aizat Abdul Bahar (68-86-74) of Universiti Utara Malaysia was third on 228.

In the ladies’ division, Nur Durriyah Damian emerged champion after carding a threeday score of 232 (74-81-77) for a two-stroke win over teammate Aretha Pan (74-81-79) of Sabah while Johorean Loy Hee Ying was third on 238 (82-76-80).

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ARIE SHINES AT NEGRI AMATEUR “After an eye-opening experience at the Maybank Malaysian Open, I sat down with my coach Kevin Smeltz [who had travelled with me] and we worked on some key points of my game that needed improvement. I’m glad that it has worked out well,” said the 2008 Malaysian Amateur Closed champion. In the ladies’ division, reigning champion Isza Fariza Ismail saw her bid for a double go up in smokes after she failed to overcome Singapore’s Amelia Yong, who nailed her first-ever amateur victory. Meanwhile another Singaporean Fariza Izanie took third place with a 226 finish.

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superb final round of 69 saw Arie Fauzi Irawan coast to a six-stroke victory over defending champion Jerome Ng at the Negeri Sembilan Amateur Open on May 13. The national overseas player combined rounds of 71, 71 and 69 before a flawless closing display at Seremban International Golf Club.

This marked the University of Tulsa senior’s second state amateur victory in Malaysia. Singapore’s Ng took second place on 217 while his compatriot Marc Ong was a further stroke behind. Arie was relieved that his hard work prior to the tournament paid off, with his first domestic title in four years.

The 20-year-old Yong, who enjoyed a five-stroke advantage after two rounds, completed her campaign with a round of three-over 75. This was adequate for a twostroke victory over Isza, who battled valiantly to a closing even-par 72. “This is my first amateur title win and I am definitely very happy. I have worked hard to win this event and I would like to thank the Singapore Golf Association (SGA) for their support in sponsoring us to play in various amateur meets in Malaysia,” said Yong.


MALAYSIAN GOLF ASSOCIATION

NEW SPONSOR BOOST FOR SAUJANA MEET

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aking a maiden foray into golf sponsorship, insurance provider Multi Purpose Insurans Berhad (MPI) has come onboard as the new title sponsor of the Saujana Amateur Open in a landmark threeyear deal. Participants from over 12 Asia-Pacific nations are expected to compete in the 25th edition of the prestigious championship, which will take place from May 29-31 at the challenging Palm Course layout.

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The quintet of Crawford & Company Adjusters (M) Sdn Bhd, Magnum Corporation Sdn Bhd, McLaren Saksama Sdn Bhd, Mestari Adjusters Sdn Bhd and MWE Holdings Bhd will take their places as presenting sponsors. “We will support Saujana Golf & Country Club as long as we are needed. Golf is the second sport that MPI is involved in. This event will complement our annual Multi Purpose Insurance Run,” said its chief executive Ong Kok San during a press conference on May 2.

The championship’s presenting partners are Crawford & Company Adjusters, Magnum Corporation, McLaren Saksama, Mestari Adjusters and MWE Holdings while the other supporters are CSSB, Crestlink, EPOS, Pharmaton, TaylorMade and Mercedes Benz. Last year, local Gavin Kyle Green claimed his second Saujana Amateur crown after eliminating Australia’s Ryan Peake in a playoff. Green is not expected to defend his title this year.

PRIME MINISTER TROPHY UP FOR CONTEST AT INAUGURAL EVENT “On our part, we felt that under our junior development roadmap, the timing is right for us to introduce another premier junior golf event to our calendar. This will provide a chance for our young champions from all over Malaysia to congregate and challenge themselves at this event,” said Mohd Anwar.

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he Malaysian Golf Association (MGA) will join forces with Royal Sporting House (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd to present the inaugural Malaysian Junior Closed Championship from June 5 -7.

The high-quality event will offer attractive prizes sponsored by Mizuno and GolfHouse as well as the opportunity for the overall champions to participate in the Mizuno Dream Cup Malaysian Selection next year.

Dubbed the Birthplace of Malaysian Champions, the by-invitation only tournament will see 120 top domestic juniors competing over a 54-hole strokeplay event at the challenging Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam.

MGA president Admiral (R) Tan Sri Dato’ Setia Mohd Anwar Mohd Nor shared that the new addition of the tournament was part of the junior development roadmap envisioned by the national association.

The tournament is open to boys and girls born in 1994 or later, with three agegroup categories (under-12, under-14 and under-16) being contested for the boys and girls respectively.

“The Prime Minister (Rt Hon Dato Sri Najib Tun Razak) first broached the subject of organising a top quality junior meet about three years ago, and agreed on his part to donate two specially-designed bronze trophies for the championship.”

“We are fortunate that RSH Malaysia has expressed their interest to come onboard as the presenting sponsor of a national-level junior event. We are grateful for their threeyear commitment to the event,” he added, noting that the championship layout at KGPA will provide a stern test to the juniors, having hosted the MGA National Team Trials and Kuala Lumpur Amateur Open earlier this year. David Leow, RSH Malaysia’s general manager for golf explained that the sponsorship was part of RSH Malaysia’s commitment to see junior golf flourish in the country. “Last year, we organised the first-ever Mizuno Junior Open in conjunction with SportExcel and this year, we embrace this chance to be part of a bigger, national-scale tournament. It gives us great pleasure to be involved in this new and prestigious championship and we’re definitely committed to a long-term outlook.”


MALAYSIAN LADIES GOLF ASSOCIATION

ISZA TRIUMPHS AT STAFFIELD

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ormer national Isza Fariza Ismail made full use of home course advantage as she triumphed at the Malaysian Ladies and Junior Girls Amateur Closed, which took place from April 19 - 20 at Staffield Country Resort. The 18-year-old carded rounds of 68 and 73 for a two-day total of three-under-par 141 to clinch the Tunku Ampuan Pahang trophy for the gross champion ahead of the nation’s top-ranked female amateur Kelly Tan, who was a shot back after rounds of 69 and 73. Nur Durriyah Damian was third with a 144 total.

Isza was delighted to capture her first win for 2012, raising her confidence ahead of the 28th edition of the Malaysian Ladies Amateur Open later this month at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club.

Edora Abdullah (Division A - nett), Wong Ooi Lin (Division B - gross), Suehainita Mohamed Noor (Division B - nett), Jacqueline Cheong (Division C) while Mili Jaikoh was victorious in the Golden Girls category.

“Definitely a morale-boosting victory especially with the field boasting all the top national amateurs but I think the conditions were favourable to me. I haven’t played at the top of my game for a while, so this result will kickstart my preparation for the MLAO,” said Isza.

Nur Eliana Ariddin of Melaka topped the junior gross category with rounds of 74 and 77 for a 151 aggregate, five strokes ahead of runner-up Kelie Kan Kah Yan (79-77) and Siti Zulaikhaa Shaari (88-76). Qistina Balqis and Natasha Andrea Onn claimed the overall junior nett and Division II championship respectively.

Other notable winners include 17-handicapper

FIFTH PLACING FOR MALAYSIA IN SINGAPORE

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alaysia bid will to host the Queen Sirikit Cup in 2014 after an improved performance by the national ladies team during the 34th edition of the Asia Pacific Ladies Team Golf Championship in Singapore recently.

The trio of Aretha Pan Herng, Kelly Tan and Vivienne Chin finished fifth among the 13 nations that competed at Tanah Merah Country Club from April 25-27, rounding off with a best-two total of 445 - their best ever haul in the history of the competition. In the individual category, Aretha Pan was placed eighth on 223 in the individual category on the back of rounds of 76,76 and 71. Team captain Dato’ Rabeahtul Aloya Abbas shared that the Malaysian Ladies Golf Association (MALGA) will put in a bid to host the 36th edition of the annual event, which travels to the Sunshine Golf & Country Club in Taiwan next year. “We are very pleased with the girls’ performance here and the result augurs well for Malaysia as we’re just behind the Asian golf powerhouses such as South Korea and New Zealand. We are keen to bid for the hosting rights for the 2014 event

and hopefully, we can do even better playing on home ground,” she said, noting that the country last hosted the championship in 2002 at A’Famosa Golf Resort in Melaka. South Korea continued their domination in the competition, clinching a 25-stroke victory over Australia (440) to lift their record 15th overall title. The team’s skipper, 16-year-old Kim Hyo Joo, also picked up the individual title, finishing on 204 (69-65-70) to hand the world’s top female amateur Lydia Ko of New Zealand a rare runner-up finish.

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INSIDE THE ROPES The confident Englishman closed his campaign with another polished display, signing off with a round of three-under 69 for an 18-under-par 270 overall and an eight-stroke advantage over runner-up Rashid Ismail at A’Famosa Golf Resort. Japan’s Go Nakauchi took third place on 279 while Singapore’s Mitchell Slorach finished in tied-fourth place alongside Japan’s Mitsuhiko Hashizume and Korea’s Kim Ji-hoon on 282 at the RM180,000 (approximately US$60,000) cosanctioned event. Richardson started his round with an almost unassailable seven-shot lead and endured an early scare when he dropped a shot at the parfive fourth. Nevertheless, Richardson quickly regained his composure with birdies on the seven and nine holes to turn in on 35. He then birdied the 14th hole before draining a 25-foot birdie effort on the closing hole to seal a stylish victory on his third ADT start. This win has put Richardson in a good position of finishing in the top-three of the Order of Merit at the end of the season to earn an Asian Tour card for next year.

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NO SWEAT FOR RICHARDSON IN A’FAMOSA

“Just played really solid. Bringing in a sevenshot lead was definitely an advantage, but I was careful knowing what Rashid is capable of doing. It was great to hole some crucial par saves out there today to hold on for the victory,” said Richardson.

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“It’s a fantastic feeling to win this week here in Melaka. I played well in the first two events (PGM Impian Masters and PGM Johor Masters) but it just wasn’t good enough. I was a bit undecided about making the trip back again to Malaysia but I liked the challenge here – I’m comfortable with the courses and the greens. I knew if I could step it up a little it bit and play

eter Richardson knew he had to step it up a notch if he was to claim his maiden Asian Development Tour (ADT) victory. The 28-year-old was satisfied with a week’s hard work after lifting the trophy of Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) ADT Masters @ A’Famosa on May 13.

ORDER OF MERIT DECIDER IN JOHOR The sixth edition of the Iskandar Johor Open will feature as the Asian Tour’s season-ending championship, cementing its status as one of the region’s fastest growing and premier tournaments. The US$2 million will revert to a full-field Asian Tour event this year when it returns to the Horizon Hills Golf and Country Club from December 13 to 16. The tournament has grown immensely in just a matter of five years since its launch as a US$300,000 event in 2007. It reached new heights in 2011 when it was jointly sanctioned by the European Tour. “We are delighted and honoured to announce that the Iskandar Johor Open will take up the premier position as the Tour’s seasonending championship in December. As the highest paying final fullfield Asian Tour tournament of the 2012 season, the sixth edition of the Iskandar Johor Open will undoubtedly play a big role in determining the new Asian Tour Order of Merit champion,” said Kyi Hla Han, executive chairman of the Asian Tour.

the way I know I can play, I could win here,” added the Carlisle-native, who plied his trade on the lesser-known MENA Golf Tour in the Gulf last year. “My goal is to play on the Asian Tour and I’m glad that this win will go a long way towards helping me achieve that goal,” he noted. Meanwhile Rashid was disappointed that he could not surmount a late challenge to pip Richardson to the title. The 39-year-old was left to rue several costly birdie chances as he marked his card with four bogeys and six birdies for his second runner-up finish at a PGM-ADT sanctioned event this year. “It was a roller-coaster day for me. There were several birdie chances which I failed to take advantage of, and I think that cost me today,” said Rashid. “Richardson played really well all week and he’s the deserving winner,” added the two-time PGM Tour winner. Leading final round scores (top ten & ties) 270 – Peter Richardson (ENG) 67-65-69-69 278 – Md Rashid Ismail 67-70-71-70 279 – Go Nakauchi (JPN) 70-69-72-68 282 – Mitchell Slorach (SIN) 72-69-74-67,

Mitsuhiko Hashizume (JPN) 72-70-73-67,

Kim Ji-hoon (KOR) 68-71-71-72

283 – Ben Leong 72-72-71-68 284 – R. Nachimuthu 71-69-72-72 286 – Gavin Flint (AUS) 71-69-72-72 287 – Iain Steel 75-73-72-67,

Lee Yoo-ho (KOR) 76-72-71-68,

Greg Moss (USA) 71-73-73-70,

Grant Jackson (ENG) 74-71-69-73

“There will be plenty to play for at the Iskandar Johor Open, as winning the Merit crown will earn exemptions into the British Open and World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship in the United States next year. It is for this reason that we expect all our top players who are vying for our prestigious Merit title to head to Horizon Hills. It certainly promises to be a spectacular week for golf fans and television viewers.” Since the inaugural event, the Iskandar Johor Open has attracted an impressive line-up of world-class stars including South Africa’s Retief Goosen, K.J. Choi of Korea, Ireland’s Padraig Harrington, Colin Montgomerie of Scotland, Henrik Stenson of Sweden, Colombian Camilio Villegas, Anthony Kim of the United States and Thai legend Thongchai Jaidee. “Having a good playing field and providing a competitive line-up of stars for our local professional golfers are very important criteria to us. I believe we have achieved that every year,” said the president of Johor Golf Association, HH Tunku Abdul Majid Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar. “This year will be no exception. The player field will consist of the best players from the Asian Tour, stars from around the world and the best local players who will once again have the opportunity to test their skills in the Iskandar Johor Open,” he added.


INSIDE THE ROPES

© Getty

CHUA UP TO SIXTH ON FUTURES TOUR RANKING

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alaysia’s leading female professional Jean Chua brighten her chances of breaking into the main LPGA Tour next year after a career best finish on the Symetra Futures Tour recently. The 24-year-old settled for a tied second behind winner Esther Choe at the US$125,000 Riviera Nayarit Classic at El Tigre Golf & Country Club from April 27 to 29, carding rounds of 74,71 and 68 for six-under 213 total. The performance elevated her into sixth on the Volvik Race for the Card after three events so far this season “I hit the ball really well during the week. I focused on my drills and kept my swing shorter which gave me better control and a more solid impact,” said Chua via email. “This finish places me in the top ten of the money list. There’s still a long year ahead and plenty of tournaments, so I just have to stay focus and not get ahead of myself. It’s important that I keep working hard to maintain my position in the top ten and guarantee a LPGA Tour card in 2013,” added the lass, who will now turn her attention to qualifying for her second consecutive US Open later this month.

NACHIMUTHU TRIUMPHS IN SABAH, CLAIMS RECORD FOURTH PGM CROWN The final round of the RM200,000 Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Sabah Classic went down to the wire, but a familiar figure once again prevailed as R. Nachimuthu grabbed his second Tour victory of the season. The in-form reigning Order of Merit champion closed with a flawless round of three-under 69 to clinch a slim one-stroke victory over defending champion and crowd darling Nicholas Fung. Totalling five-under 283 over four rounds, Nachimuthu picked up a cheque for RM33,600 and further strengthened his grasp on the current Order of Merit leaderboard. Seven strokes adrift in third was S. Sivachandhran, who managed a closing oneunder 71 for a two-over 290 aggregate. Birdies on the first, sixth and the tenth helped Nachimuthu maintain his one-shot overnight lead for much of the round. Although Fung proved a tough challenger, a dropped shot on the 16th proved the 22-year-old local’s only undoing in the end despite a finishing trot of birdies on the 17th and 18th. “Today, I just went out there to play one shot at a time and protect my lead. Fung played brilliantly except for his mistake on the 16th,” said Nachimuthu, who was the sole player to card four sub-par rounds all week.

“Right now, my game feels good and I’m playing with real confidence,” added the 41-year-old, who just recently inked a sponsorship deal with property conglomerate I&P Group. Buoyed by his family and friends, Fung had an audacious eagle attempt on the 18th but only managed to leave it short of the pin. “I tried my best. I shot the same score that I did last year when I beat Danny Chia to win the tournament but it wasn’t good enough,” said Fung. “It was a bit of struggle in the front nine where I only made two birdies because my iron play was not so good. If I had one regret, it would be the bogey on the 16th which kind of changed things.” Leading final round scores (top ten & ties) 283 – R. Nachimuthu 70-72-72-69 284 – Nicholas Fung 68-75-72-69 290 – S. Sivachandhran 68-76-75-71 292 – Mohd Rizal Amin 75-71-73-73 293 – Airil Rizman 76-73-76-68, Haziq Hamizan 72-75-76-70, Wilson Choo 74-75-73-71 294 – Khor Kheng Hwai 75-72-73-74 295 – Kalana Ibrahim 71-75-74-75, 296 – Anis Helmi Hassan 76-73-75-72

PROS BRING CHEER TO SICK KIDS AT UMMC

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ookie professionals Kenneth De Silva and Azman Basharuddin ‘laboured away’ on May Day, bringing a smile to terminally ill children at the paediatric ward of University Malaya Medical Centre during a CSR visit jointly organised by Team Golf Asia, Panzana Corporation Berhad and Callaway Golf Malaysia. Kenneth and Azman had their A-games on hand, as they spent the afternoon handing out goodies and food items to the children as well as guiding the excited youngsters in a mini golf challenge. Team Golf Asia’s Russell Maw and Ahmed Zaharani Yusof Omar were also on hand to present a few units of wheelchairs to the paediatric ward. “It’s definitely something new for the both of us, but it was quite an experience to know that you can make a difference in the lives of these sick children by just spending a little time with them,” said Kenneth.

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INDUSTRY TALK

KUALA LUMPUR HOSTS SUCCESSFUL FIRST ASIA GOLF TOURISM CONVENTION

© IAGTO

IAGTO president Peter Walton (left) with Tourism Malaysia acting DG Datuk Azizan Nordin (centre) and Paul Gibbons of MGTA

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he nation’s burgeoning golf tourism sector received a timely shot in its arms after it successfully hosted the maiden Asia Golf Tourism Convention (ATGC) at the Palace of the Golden Horses in Seri Kembangan from April 22-25.

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The four-day event comprised a tight programme of activities for the delegates including over 6,000 one-to-one meetings, networking sessions featuring a unique

‘speed dating’ segment as well as an IAGTO briefing on the business potential of golf tourism in Asia. Participants were also regaled to a “Malaysian Night” gala dinner on April 23 at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre. International delegates were also given familiarisation tours to Kuala Lumpur, Melaka, Johor and Sabah. The tours included golfing opportunities at some of the country’s top courses, prior to and after the convention. © IAGTO

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The convention, the first to be organised by the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) in this part of the world, saw over 420 delegates from 46 countries in attendance. This consisted of golf tour operators selling Asia Pacific destinations as well as the region’s golf suppliers including leading golf resorts and hotels, inbound travel operators and tourist board representatives from Europe, Asia and Oceania.

The convention was officiated by Tourism Malaysia’s acting director-general Datuk Azizan Noordin on behalf of Tourism Minister Dato’ Sri Ng Yen Yen. Reading out the minister’s speech, Azizan stated that golf tourism has been identified as one of the key priority projects for the nation to enhance its tourism yields under the Economic Transformation Programme.


INDUSTRY TALK

Tête-à-tête with Peter Walton

© IAGTO

President & Chief Executive, IAGTO

“Golf tourism is set to become one of the fastest growing segments of the tourism industry in Malaysia. Last year, Malaysia recorded RM286 million (US$95.3 million) in golf tourism revenue, exceeding the initially forecasted revenue of RM249.5 million. In 2012, we expect to achieve revenue of close to RM300 million (USD96.6 million) from golf tourism.” “We would like to thank the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) for its strong support in choosing Malaysia as the host for this inaugural event. For Malaysia, this is certainly a huge opportunity to showcase our offerings in golf tourism especially to all delegates, thus, promoting Malaysia as an exciting golf destination in this region.”

It’s been a year since you were in Kuala Lumpur for the launch of the Malaysian Golf Tourism Association (MGTA). How much have we progressed? I have done the golf tourism strategies for 25 countries and I have never seen such rapid progress within 12 months. It has helped that we have organised this event to mark this landmark moment, so it would definitely serve as a catalyst to get things to move faster. I’m hoping that the next one year will be the process of letting everybody get on and do the work without having to manage it. It is important to note that the MGTA has been a predominantly private sector driven initiative, which in itself is an admirable feat, considering its non-profit intent. How important has the support of the government sector been to the success of MGTA? Absolutely crucial. The private sector has getting the message out to key markets spearheaded the efforts by MGTA but it around the world - shouting out that you cannot fund international promotions must come to Malaysia and sample its golf on its own. Tourism Malaysia has come tourism products. out and strongly supported the effort of

© IAGTO

How has the response been to IAGTO in this part of the world? It did take some legwork on our part in. We love that and we will continue to do because not everyone knew who we were. that next year in Pattaya. We are not about What I discovered is once a few people got events, the events exist because business the hang of what we do, word spreads like gets done here. Hence, it’s just as important wildfire to all corners of Asia. We had a full to us to embrace people who didn’t come house two months ahead of the event, to here and work with them as well. an extent that we couldn’t fit everybody

MGTA pro-tem chairman Paul Gibbons noted that the convention had a massive impact on the association’s comprehensive five-year marketing roadmap to help build Malaysia as a leading golf tourism destination in Asia.

© IAGTO

“Being the first Asian country to host the IAGTO Asia Golf Tourism Convention, we foresee that this convention will boost the country’s reputation as a business tourism destination of choice and at the same time, promote Malaysia as an exciting golf destination in this region,” he said.

What is your vibe from this inaugural convention in Asia? I set up the International Golf Mart in 1998, have the same vibe because I know that we we had 400 people - exactly the same here, can achieve what we achieved even faster and that was the second year after we here - there’s a clear buzz of expectation. formed the IAGTO. Fifteen years later, I still How will the Malaysian golf tourism convention? It boils down to the economy, creating employment opportunities and inflow of money. The business being done here are not private deals between two people but their negotiation could possibly bring thousands of golf tourists from all

sector itself benefit from hosting this corners of the world to Malaysia. Golf tourism is a very labour-intensive industry - the transportation sector, hotels, food & beverage establishments, shopping and spa operators all stand to benefit.

Your initial audit report covered 25 golf courses and resorts across the country. What are the key points that you have identified which will help the Malaysian market itself as a golf tourism destination? One of the difficulties is that Malaysia has initial audit process identifies the most over 200 golf courses spread over a vast appropriate “export-ready” course. While landscape - it is a complicated destination, golfers may differ in preference of the unlike Tenerife for example, which has only topography and challenge, we feel that three courses. It is crucial to present the we are able to encapsulate what they seek destination in a simpler and clever way for or desire by grading the standard of so that golf tourists can get their heads maintenance and service at the golf clubs around and make easy decisions. The and resorts, and not the golf course itself.

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INDUSTRY TALK

MST GOLF TO OPERATE PGM PEAK PERFORMANCE ACADEMY

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n a move to increase the talent pool of professional tour players in the country, Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) has partnered with MST Golf to set up and operate the highly anticipated PGM Peak Performance Academy at Kinrara Golf Club. The Academy will develop a benchmark programme with the aim of developing professional golfers who can elevate the standard and competitiveness of the burgeoning domestic circuit, while making inroads on the regional circuit. This is in line with the vision of PGM chairman, Tun Ahmad Sarji Abdul Hamid by having at least 30 players on the Asian Tour circuit and three players on the European Tour in the next five years. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to be part of this initiative and support PGM under the stewardship of Tun Ahmad Sarji, to plan and deliver the Peak Performance Program which offers players the opportunity to train with similar advantages as the world’s bests,” shared Paul Gibbons of MST Golf.

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The comprehensive and holistic training program will cover the development of fundamental skills sets required by young professionals and good amateurs. This is needed to step up to the demands of peak performance of tournament play such as physical, technical, mental and emotional strength as well as match-winning strategies.

The program will be headed by leading golf professional Dean Hartman and supported by high-calibre coaching staff consisting of reputable golf instructors and consultants from various branches of sports science and human development fields.

Ahmad Sarji noted that while the PGM was entrusted with establishing a sustainable domestic circuit and not directly catering to the welfare of domestic golf professionals, the academy was a logical step forward to develop a new breed of world-class beaters.

Participants will also have the opportunity to train under the tutelage of top golf guru Ian Triggs and two-time Malaysian Open winner Stewart Ginn.

“It is vital that we empower the younger players coming through the ranks with the necessary skills, confidence and temperament to compete at a higher level than the current set of professionals. They have to be comfortable in their own skins and have the desire to hone their skills. They should seek to succeed not only on the PGM Tour but also on the regional and international circuits,” he said. Furthermore, PGM will subsidise the entry cost for the program, with participants only expected to bear RM18,000 of the total cost of RM48,000.

The first intake of the 24-week long programme, which got underway on May 14 will see the participants being extended the opportunity to train at the prestigious Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club as well Impian Golf & Country Club. They will also be granted entries to PGM Tour events, where their performance will be monitored.

NEW LOOK FOR CITYGOLF @ BSC

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ity Golf at Bangsar Shopping Centre recently marked its fourth year in business with a special relaunch gathering for its key partners, loyal clientele and media on May 3. The immensely popular indoor golf centre had undergone a makeover of sorts. It reopened its doors with a new look that includes the addition of club fitting specialists, The Old Clubhouse. Incorporating a new bar, an updated modern colour scheme and a revised simulator layout, the new venue has been designed to deliver a clubhouse feel to its audience. “We wanted to create a more customerfriendly and intimate setting, with a traditional ‘clubhouse’ feel to the venue. We believe the newly designed bar area and change in layout have done exactly this. The feedback from our members has been very positive. With the addition of The Old Clubhouse, we now have the ultimate

venue to relax, play golf, take a lesson and buy your equipment, all whilst socialising with fellow minded people,” said Tom Sarginson of CityGolf. In addition to the golf benefits, the venue now proudly offers three large screen televisions to watch the latest sporting action - a timely addition with the upcoming Olympics and European Championships for guests to organise private viewing parties for up to 10 friends. The swanky bar offers the latest European bottled beers and Japan’s top-selling Asahi beer on tap whilst La Bodega continues to provide their famous tapas, sandwiches, pastas and pizza. In conjunction with the unveiling of its new look, City Golf has launched Ladies Night, Junior Tour and Monthly Quiz alongside the ever popular Social tournament. A Corporate League will also be launched later in the year.


AROUND THE GLOBE

WESTWOOD DEFENDS TITLE IN JAKARTA

ee Westwood overcame fatigue to win his first title of the year and his 38th career victory with a successful title defence at the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters presented by PNTS on April 22. The world number three completed a marathon of 32 holes as he returned on Sunday morning to finish the third round before closing with a final round two-overpar 74 for a winning total of 16-under-par 272 at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club. The Englishman defeated former Asian Tour number one Thaworn Wiratchant of Thailand, who returned with a 67, by two

shots while India’s rising star Gaganjeet Bhullar and Shiv Kapur finished in tied third place at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club. “Today was hard. It is never easy playing in these conditions and I had to play 32 holes. It was draining out there and I was really feeling it on the back nine. When you are in contention and under pressure, it seems to zap your energy faster,” said Westwood, who took home his share of US$118,875.

© Khalid Redza / Asian Tour

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“Hopefully this will kick-start my year. I’ve played well without any wins so hopefully I can go on and win other tournaments,” added the 39-year-old.

SMOOTH-SWINGING WIESBERGER ROMPS TO BALLANTINE’S VICTORY

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ustria’s Bernd Wiesberger left his rivals trailing in his wake as he romped to victory with a closing fourunder-par 68 to lift the Ballantine’s Championship on April 28.

© Paul Lakatos / Asian Tour

The 26-year-old Austrian savoured the winning feeling for the time when he signed off with a four-day total of 18-under-par 270 to lift his maiden Tour title at the €2,205,000 Ballantine’s Championship which was tri-sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and Korea PGA.

Second-placed Richie Ramsay of Scotland battled to a flawless 65 but was still not good enough to overtake Wiesberge while Frenchman Victor Dubuisson, who took the opening round lead, grabbed a share of third place alongside 2010 winner Marcus Fraser of Australia on 277. Three birdies in the closing four holes for the Austrian meant that there was never going to be any question on who will win the Ballantine’s Championship.

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easoned Thai talisman Thaworn Wiratchant charged to an eight-shot victory in the inaugural Luang Prabang Laos Open held from May 3-6.

much like Luang Prabang, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The 45-year-old led by six strokes after the halfway mark and started the final round eight ahead.

A final round five-under-par 67 for a 21-under tournament total saw him secure his third title on the ASEAN PGA Tour. Filipino Jay Bayron ended in second place after shooting a 65 while Thanyakon Khrongpha from Thailand was a further four strokes back.

“It is a very special feeling to win in Laos. It is exciting to be here especially as the game of golf is new to this country,” said Thaworn.

Thaworn’s performance was a thing of beauty

“You don’t feel tired when you are playing well and winning,” added the 46-year-old, who was playing in his ninth successive tournament.

© Paul Lakatos / Asian PGA

THAWORN CLAIMS SEASON-OPENER IN LAOS

BIG DOLPHIN CREATES SPLASH IN PATTAYA

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© Paul Lakatos / Asian PGA

efending champion Prom Meesawat was the toast of the Singha Pattaya Open once again as he claimed the title for a record third time. The Thai fired a final round two-under-par 70 on May13 to win by three strokes ahead of countryman Thanyakon Khrongpha at Burapha Golf Club. In third place was Filipino Jay Bayron, who carded a 70 to finish seven behind the winner in the 10th anniversary edition of the tournament. The 27-year-old Prom had a four-shot lead at

the start of the day but two-time ASEAN PGA Tour winner Thanyakon made four birdies in the first six holes to narrow the gap. At the turn Prom led by two but any concerns he had were laid to rest when Thanyakon double bogeyed the par-three 12th and then bogeyed 14 to slip out of contention. “Thanyakon really came at me and I had a battle on my hands. He was really playing well like we all know he can. After the 12th though I felt much more relaxed,” said Prom, who finished with a four round aggregate of 14-under-par 274 and US$9,500 for his efforts.

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AROUND THE GLOBE

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rendan Grace closed off his third title of a dream debut season on the European Tour after triumphing by three shots US$3 million Volvo China Open. The 23-year-old made the most of calm conditions to maintain his overnight lead, carding a closing 69 for 21-under par total of 267 and a winners’ cheque of US$530,000. Reigning champion Nicolas Colsaerts of Belgium took second place on 270 while England’s Richard Finch, who closed with a 66, finished a further shot back in the OneAsia and European Tour cosanctioned event.

© Paul Lakatos / One Asia

AMAZING GRACE CONTINUES WINNING RUN Grace’s only blemish of the day at the Tianjin Binhai Lake course was a bogey on the par-four fourth, but he recovered and kept his nerve for the remainder of the round. “I stayed really calm even after the bogey. I think the experience of earlier this year really helped me a lot,” said Grace “To have won three now, before May, is unbelievable,” added the South African, who burst onto the scene in January when he won back-to-back victories on home soil, taking the Joburg Open and the Volvo Golf Champions tournament.

BI-ONIC KIM TRIUMPHS IN KOREA

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© Paul Lakatos / One Asia

alented South Korean Kim Bi-o underscored his tremendous potential after cruising to a five-stroke victory at the GS Caltex Maekyung Open on May 13.

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The 21-year-old former PGA Tour player shot a four-under-par 68 for a final 15-under 273 at the Namseoul Country Club, earning him close to US$171,146 and elevating him to second place on the OneAsia Order of Merit behind Australian Nick Cullen, winner of the Enjoy Jakarta Indonesia Open.

“I have always dreamed of winning this tournament more than any other in Korea,” said the delighted winner. “People who win here tend to go on to greater things,” added Kim, who claimed his second victory on OneAsia, having won the Nanshan China Masters last year. Kim’s compatriot Ryu Hyun-woo closed with a final round 66 to grab second place while Kang Kyung-nam completed the home domination, lying a further shot in third with a 279 overall.

MAGICAL SANTOS CLAIMS HISTORIC PORTUGUESE WIN icardo Santos proved that he is a man for the big occasion as he fired a flawless nine-under 63 to come from behind and win the Madeira Islands Open on May 13. Santos completed his campaign with a 22-under par 266 total to earn his first European Tour victory and became the first Portuguese player to win a European Tour event in his home country. Starting the day four shots off the lead held by Carlos Del Moral, the 29-year-old ruthlessly

slashed the Spaniard’s advantage with four birdies in his first eight holes. A further five birdies in the last seven holes to claim a handsome four-stroke victory over second placed Magnus A. Carlsson while Andreas Hartø managed to finish alone in third on 17-under-par 271.

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“It was a sensational round, definitely the best of my career,” Santos said. “It was amazing to have the crowds here supporting me. It would be difficult to imagine a better win than this.”

MOLINARI STORMS TO SEVILLE TITLE

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© Getty

rancesco Molinari shot a final round seven-under 65 to win the Reale Seguros Open de Espana by three strokes, becoming the first Italian to capture the European Tour event. Molinari finished at eight-under 280 in the 100th edition of the tournament for his third victory on the tour at the Club de Golf de Sevilla on May 6. Entering the final round with four-shot deficit

to Simon Dyson of England, the 29-year-old Italian rattled off seven birdies in the first 14 holes before saving four composed par finishes to see home. “It’s just to win any tournament on the European Tour, but one with the history of this one, in the year of the centenary, is something fantastic,” said Molinari, who was followed by Spaniards Pablo Larrazabal (71) and Alejandro Canizares (69) and Denmark’s Soren Kjeldsen (69) in second.


AROUND THE GLOBE

FOWLER DEFEATS MCILROY FOR FIRST PGA TOUR CROWN

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ickie Fowler finally justified his billing as one of the game’s top young players after claiming his maiden PGA Tour victory at the Wells Fargo Championship in his 67th Tour start.

© Getty

The 23-year-old, whose colourful outfits and allorange Sunday get-up had brought him more attention than his tour results, drained a fourfooter for birdie on the first extra hole against Ulsterman Rory McIlroy and fellow American D.A. Points at Quail Hollow. Fowler fired five birdies in an eight-hole stretch midway through his final round, carding a threeunder-par 69 to join 2010 winner McIlroy (70) and Points (71) in the sudden-death playoff after tying at 14-under-par 274 in regulation.

“It’s a good feeling right now,” said Folwer , who’s only other professional victory to date came at the Korean Open on OneAsia last year. “Definitely some relief and satisfaction. “I knew I was good enough, and it was just getting everything to come together and stay patient.” Fowler’s Arsenal Driver: Cobra AMP (9.5°) Fairway: Ping i20 (15°) Hybrid: Adams Idea Pro Black (20°) Irons: Cobra AMP Pro Protoype (4-9) Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design Spin Milled (48°,50°,55° & 59°) Putter: Scotty Cameron for Titleist Select GoLo (Mallet) Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

STEADY KUCHAR CLINCHES PLAYERS TITLE att Kuchar captured his fourth career PGA Tour title with a twoshot victory at The Players Championship on May 13.

miilion from the US$9.5 million prize fund, said that the latest victory, which elevated him into the top five in the world was the biggest of his career

The 33-year-old carded a two-under-par 70 closing round to finish with an overall 13-under-par 275 at TPC Sawgrass ahead of the quartet of Rickie Fowler, Zach Johnson, Ben Curtis and Martin Laird, who were tied for second place at 11 under.

“It’s exciting to win tournaments, to be in this position, to have this trophy,” said Kuchar. “This tournament, you had to have had the strongest field (nine of the top ten in the Official World Golf Rankings) in the world, and to come out on top is just an amazing feeling.”

Kuchar, who received a share of US$1.71

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LEWIS WINS THRILLER IN ALABAMA

© Getty

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tacy Lewis collected her second LPGA Tour win at the US$.125 million Mobile Bay LPGA Classic after holding off a hard-charging Lexi Thompson by a one-shot margin.

“I feel like I’ve been close ever since then just to winning and people say I haven’t been winning, just kind of knocking on the door,” said Lewis, who won $187,500.

Lewis shot a final round three-underpar 69, needing a clutch birdie on the par-five 16th and two closing pars to overtake the teenage phenom, who carded a bogey-free closing sevenunder 65 en-route to setting the clubhouse mark at 16-under 272.

“It’s nice to get it out of the way. I fought. I’m exhausted. I’m glad I didn’t have to play more holes,” added the 27-yearold, who only other LPGA victory came at the Kraft Nabisco Championship last year.

PORNANONG GAINS LPGA BREAKTHROUGH IN RIO win the HSBC LPGA Brasil Cup by four shots on May 6.

The 22-year-old Thai lass went into the final round of the two-day exhibition tournament at Itanhanga Golf Club in Rio de Janeiro tied with Karine Icher of France on seven-under and never looked back. Phatlum hit five birdies on the front nine, including consecutive birdies on the seventh, eighth and ninth holes to extend her lead before

cruising to the title with a flawless back-nine performance for a 13-under 133 aggregate. “I’m so excited today!” exclaimed Phatlum.”I played really well today and I played my own game. I’m just very happy. Everybody was very nice. I love to play here. I will come back here,” added the 22-year-old, who had her brother, Pornapong - a professional himself - on the bag for the week. Taiwan’s Amy Hung shot the a final round best of eight-under 65 to finish second, one shot ahead of Paula Creamer and Chella Choi, both who finished on eight-under 136.

© Getty

ive-time Ladies Asian Golf Tour (LAGT) F winner Pornanong Phatlum carded a sixunder 67 to hold onto her first-round lead and


COURSE FEATURE

OPEN FOR PLAY

Palm Garden Golf Club welcomes you to savour Malaysia’s most luxurious public course experience 28

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any golfers will have fond memories of playing the Palm Garden Golf Club in the past and it is unlikely that this perception will change after a visit to the latest reincarnation of one of the nation’s top golf courses. Three years and a RM50 million dollar rebuilding exercise later, the spanking new 18hole parkland layout which plays a tad shorter and tighter - it measures a mere 6,027m from the black tees - poses a stern challenge for all level of golfers, touting itself very much as a “thinker’s course”.

Pristine is the word that best describes the beautifully manicured layout with water hazards coming to play on a majority of holes, providing a visually contrasting sight against the narrow and undulating green zoysia fairways and fairly medium-sized and fastrunning tifdwarf Bermuda greens. As you tee-off from one of the many elevated tees that offers you a breathtaking view of the surrounding holes, the natural mangrove surrounds as well as the residential developments and the up-coming IOI City mall in the background, it is quite impossible to assess the daunting challenge that one needs to negotiate ahead. Seventy-seven sand traps - almost all built in Parlsow’s signature high-lipped bunkering style - pepper the fairways and guard the greens, rewarding accuracy of the tees and approaches. Miss the fairways and you are most likely to stray into trouble.

Designed by renowned Australian course architect Ted Parslow of E&G Parslow - the craftsman behind some of Malaysia’s top golf tracts such as Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club, Glenmarie Golf & Country Club and Dalit Bay Golf & Country Club, the new Palm Garden plays and behaves totally different from its 27-hole predecessor. It has a notably a more friendly course with its wide and long fairways and easy-to-manage rough.

Prepare to punch yourself out from behind one of the over 4,000 mature trees transplanted across the course or take a drink in the many

waterways that flow through the 125-acre green lung, which doubles up as water catchment for the surrounding Putrajaya and Cyberjaya townships. Wind comes to play especially on the back nine and many a rounds will be decided on the three par-fives on the homebound stretch. Moreover, like all good golf courses, Palm Garden leaves the best for the last with an impressive finishing hole. Playing downhill, golfers have a good view of the pin on a peninsula-shaped green and will need a balanced trade-off between risk-and-reward to garner a good finish to their round.


COURSE FEATURE

29 A modern and well spread out clubhouse is the likely start and end of any golf round and no expense and thought has been spared to meet the discerning golfers’ needs, notwithstanding the club’s new status as a public course. Complete with all amenities demanded of a premier golfing destination such as a pro shop, tennis courts, an infinity swimming pool and jacuzzi, a double-tier driving range as well as a variety of F&B outlets to choose from, Palm Garden may also boast as being the first golf club in the country with a fully covered car park facility. With its tagline Excellent by Nature, the new Palm Garden Golf Club retains much of its old

charm in a distinctly modern setting, albeit providing a far tougher golfing challenge than most would have been acquainted with in the past.

PALM GARDEN GOLF CLUB

IOI City Resort, 62502 Putrajaya Tel: 03 - 8213 6333 Fax: 03 - 8213 6388 Email: 03 - pgcc@palmgarden.net.my / golfdept@palmgarden.net.my Web: www.palmgarden.net.my Green fees

Weekday

Weekend

9 holes

RM159 RM265

18 holes

RM245 RM406

Buggy

RM45 (nine holes)

RM90 (18 holes)

Caddy

RM25 (nine holes)

RM45 (18 holes)


IN THE BAG

ATV Wedges

www.taylormadegolf.com • • • •

New ATV (All-Terrain Versatility) sole lets you play all critical shots with one wedge: chip, pitch, flop, explosion from sand, out of the rough, off a tight lie. Bounce angle changes depending on how the head and face are positioned. New all-milled groove design and micro-texture across the face generates more spin within USGA rules. New Lamkin wedge grip extends farther down the shaft for improved traction when choking down.

RRP: RM530

Inpres X D Forged Irons

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www.yamaha.co.jp • • • •

Combination of the cavity design and ultra thin face makes the D Forged a great performance club for the average player looking for improvement in ball speed and launch angle. Premium Endo S20C D Forged head is matched with a plasma welded SAE high repulsion face for notable durability and increased rebound Soft Forged S20C body promotes enhanced feel and the specially designed steel shafts provide better control. Newly added wider sole that allows the head to have a lower center of gravity to promote more consistency and forgiveness from a variety of lies.

RRP: Prices available upon request at selected MST Golf Stores

Speedline 12 Fast Driver www.adamsgolf.com • • • •

Incorporates the proprietary Airfoil Design to produce a 460cc driver with less drag for increased club speed and forgiveness. Features a satin silver matte finish and increased crown size to inspire confidence at address. Comes standard with a New Graffaloy ProLaunch Blue shaft with Speed Coat Technology which promotes increased airflow attachment to lower drag. Available in loft of 8.5, 9.8 and 10.5

RRP: RM1,499


IN THE BAG

HEX Black Tour Golf Balls www.callawaygolf.com

i-Core™ Technology • The combination of the soft inner core and firm outer core provides the optimal spin separation from tee to green to optimize the balance of both distance and control DuraSpin™ Cover • A proprietary formulation that yields the soft feel and exceptional short-game spin skilled players C seek in a Tour golf ball M New HEX Aerodynamics™ • Refined pattern provides the best aerodynamic performance Y ever in a Callaway golf ball, reducing drag and promoting a stable, penetrating ball flight that holds its line in the windCM

RRP: RM199

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CMY

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HEX Chrome Golf Balls www.callawaygolf.com

s-Tech Core ™ • With its low compression, it provides extremely soft feel off the clubface and generates low driver spin to maximize distance. DuraSpin™ Cover • A proprietary formulation that produces the soft feel and the exceptional short-game spin necessary in a high performance golf ball New HEX Aerodynamics™ • Refined pattern provides the best aerodynamic performance ever in a Callaway golf ball, reducing drag and promoting a stable, penetrating ball flight that holds its line in the wind

RRP: RM149


GEAR UP

World Class GTX Golf Shoes

www.ecco.com • • • • • •

Smart and contemporary shoe with a classic golf look crafted with luxurious leather uppers. Water-repellent leather outsole ensures maximum durability for all conditions. Five-milimetre leather-covered inlay sole with ECCO Comfort Fibre System offers flexibility and long lasting comfort. Interior promotes air circulation to keep feet feeling fresh all day long. GORE-TEX® membrane protects against moisture for the active mover The rubber outsole is equipped with two-colored Champ Stinger™ cleats with metal thread for excellent traction and grip.

RRP: RM1899

(available at selected Transview Golf outlets)

www.colantotte.com • • •

Magtitan Neo Legend Bracelet

Limited edition health bracelet created specifically to commemorate the worldwide release of Marvel’s The Avengers - a true replica as worn by Tony Stark aka Iron Man. Stylish design features an elegant combination of corrosion-resistant pure titanium and carbon, finished with a coat of transparent resin. Utilises uses two 100mT (1,000 Gauss) ferrite permanent magnets arranged in Colantotte’s patented Alternating North-South Polarity Orientation (ANSPO™) to create a larger magnetic field flow.

RRP: RM990 32

www.nike.com • • • •

Dunk NG Golf Shoes

Bringing the original Nike Dunk from the hardwood to the course, the shoe highlights the same fit and retro styling, utilising premium materials with a choice of eye-catching colors. Sturdy rubber outsole wraps up to help protect the foot while providing excellent cushioning and comfort and for extra durability, the forefoot is stitched with super-tough thread. Perforations over the toe area allow for ventilation when things heat up. Features Scorpion Stinger spikes and Tri-Lock system which deliver gripping power, stability and support from the ground up during powerful swings.

RRP: RM499


GEAR UP

VERSATILE COMFORT On and off the golf course, the

Stay Casual Contest

Contour Casual fits the bill

with its attention to comfort, style and fit

Looking for a cool pair of kicks that impresses your mates on and off the course. Well, here’s an easy way to get yourself a pair of the latest FJ Contour Casual. Select your favourite color scheme and conjure up a catchy winning slogan to be fitted with FootJoy’s latest spikeless creation. Or join the contest on Facebook (www.facebook.com/theclubhousemy) PRIZE

Two golfers will each win (one) pair of FJ Contour Casual golf shoes. Name Address Email Telephone Handphone

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s more and more golf shoe makers foray into collection of casual or ‘street’ shoes, it was only time that the leading shoe company in the business, FootJoy, made its entry into the leisure segment.

Current Golf apparel brand used: Pick your favourite FJ Contour Casual color scheme

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FJ Contour Casual is a spikeless shoe designed for sporty golfers looking for a stylish pair of kicks before, during and after a round of golf. Developed using the same construction as the successful FJ Contour Series, the Contour Casual incorporates super-soft tumbled casual full grain leather uppers with a lightweight Fit-Bed sole and all-round waterproof protection for excellent fit and comfort. A soft quarter lining is carefully constructed to provide extreme comfort, while the Contour Casual’s Slip-Last construction provides unmatched flexibility. The proprietary DuraMax™ rubber nubbed outsole promotes enhanced turf gripping in all-terrains as well as performance and durability expected from a FJ golf shoe.

Pen a slogan in not more than 20 words FJ shoes are the best because ...

Mail your entries to Stay Casual Contest c/o Inpress Media Sdn Bhd

A-3-1 Jalan PJS5/30 Pusat Perdagangan Petaling Jaya Selatan 46150 Petaling Jaya, Selangor Fax: 603 777 222 10

With 47 possible size and width options, the FJ Contour Casual will provide an excellent fit specific to your feet, with offerings in half sizes and the option of narrow, medium, wide and extra-wide. Available in four colour schemes - dark brown/green, black/taupe blaze, white/taupe blaze and navy/red, Contour Casual collections retails for a recommended selling price of RM480 and is now available in all good golf retail outlets.

TERMS & CONDITIONS l No purchases required. Making a purchase will not increase your chance of winning a prize. l Employees of Acushnet Malaysia S/B and Inpress Media Sdn Bhd and their immediate families, as well as employees of advertising agencies and suppliers of good and services to Acushnet Malaysia S/B are not eligible to participate in this contest. l To qualify for participation in this contest, complete this form and mail it to the address above. l Incomplete entries and entries with illegible handwriting will be disqualified. l Each person is only entitled to win one prize in this contest. l The closing date date for entries is Friday June 29, 2012. l Winners will be contacted directly by Acushnet Malaysia S/B for collection of prizes. l Prize won is strictly non-transferable and non-exchangeable. l Winners release Acushnet Malaysia S/B from any and all liability, loss or damage incurred with respect to the possession, use or misuse of any prizes. l In the event of any dispute, Acushnet Malaysia S/B’s decision is final and no correspondence whatsoever will be entertained. l Acushnet Malaysia S/B reserves the right to amend any part of the terms and conditions without prior notice. l The contest and terms and conditions shall be governed by the laws of Malaysia.


GEAR UP

THE COURSE NEVER LEAVES YOU 34

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Rejuvenated Ashworth set to storm golf lifestyle segment with long-anticipated stylish additions

oted for its rich history as the company that revolutionised the golf apparel industry in both fashion and function in the 80s, Ashworth Golf is keen on making a strong re-entry into the market after

“Ashworth has always attracted golfers who like to be identified by the sports they love and the heritage of the game. Since its inception, the brand’s following is made up of players who completely embrace the true golfing lifestyle, both in apparel and footwear. This means having products that not only perform

and shorts as well as a range of outerwear, footwear and accessories, all focusing on modern style for the authentic golfer,” he added.

In a written message to consumers, TaylorMade MD for Asia Jason Bierholm, vice-president and managing director shared: “Ashworth is a brand with tremendous untapped business potential. We are enthusiastic about the opportunity to start a brand new chapter for Ashworth, rejuvenating and repositioning it to become the leading golf lifestyle brand of choice in Southeast Asia.” playing second fiddle to its competitors for some time. The brand which is now a division of global golf powerhouse TaylorMade-adidas is aiming to once again differentiate itself from the pack by adding contemporary relevance and clarity to a brand most avid golfers will remember as the ‘pioneer of modern golf apparel’.

and look great on the golf course but can easily and seamlessly be worn off of it,” said Heng Lye Guan, the country manager of TaylorMadeadidas Golf Malaysia during a sneak preview of Ashworth’s latest collection recently. “Going forward, the Ashworth brand will continue to offer a full line-up of polo and woven shirts for both men and women, pants

In terms of tour validation, Ashworth has expanded of its Tour roster, signing over 30 ambassadors across the likes of Fred Couples, Ryan Palmer, Justin Leonard as well as Sony Open-winning newcomer Johnson Wagner. In Asia, the likes of Sujjan Singh, Lee Sung and Malaysia’s own Iain Steel will be sporting the brand.


GOLF DOWN UNDER

Richard Fellner is the Group Editor of Inside Golf Magazine – Australia’s most regularly read golf publication. Hailing from the United States but now a proud resident of Melbourne, Fellner is a true golf tragic © Getty

having played the game for over

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ver the past few months, the subject of attire on the golf course has been a contentious subject in Australia. Traditionally, private clubs down under have held their members to rigid dress codes. In general, this entailed a “neat and tidy” appearance, namely collared shirts, tailored shorts, white socks, etc. The rules generally eschewed denim jeans, cut-off shorts, T-shirts and any other “loud” attire. However, in today’s current struggle to retain members, and attract the ever-important junior contingent, some clubs are beginning to relax the traditional dress codes. White socks and collared shirts still reign supreme in most cases, but it seems that more clubs are starting to “turn a blind eye” to the more creatively-attired golfers these days. Players like Rickie Fowler, Ian Poulter and even John Daly have begun to make more inroads with their brightly coloured, vibrant clothing lines. The “loud” look has captured the imagination of today’s younger players, and the resulting fashion trend seen more and more on our courses, much to the chagrin of the older generation of members. In addition, more Tour players are sporting a “scruffy” look on their faces – with beards, goatees or simply just unshaven stubble becoming the norm. The traditionalists out there are crying foul, claiming that the new fashion is destroying the traditions and essence of the game. They contend that if we relax the dress codes then the entire game may spin out of control into the equivalent of an unrestrained frat party. Voicing the other side of the argument are those who claim that the game is too entrenched in oldfashioned, elitist attitudes and antiquated traditions that have little appeal to the younger generations.

35 years but never getting any better at it.

Many believe it is this younger generation that is the key to the future of the game itself. With a strong junior membership or contingent, a club can look forward to decades of revenues and income. Hence, more clubs are beginning to cater to the younger players.

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Nevertheless, getting today’s juniors onto the course is difficult enough with the large selection of other sports, hobbies and distractions like video games and computers on offer. So any barrier to introduction to the game –like not allowing a bright cap, for example – should expect a sound “no thanks” from the juniors. What many of the traditionalists fail to see is that dress codes in most sports have regularly adapted to the times, and players’ uniforms have regularly reflected the fashion and styles of the younger generations. From baseball to cricket to soccer and more, it is seen by some as unavoidable in order to ensure the survival of the sports. Just look at the variety of this year’s upcoming Olympics uniforms and then compare them to, say, 20 or 30 years ago, and you will see a remarkable contrast. Golf is no different. From the once ubiquitous knickerbockers/plus-fours and morning coats to the “revolutionary” wearing of bowties, V-neck sweaters and even short pants, golf and current fashion have long been intertwined. In a way, today’s accepted “Neat and Tidy” attire would likely have golfers of the 1900’s gasping in horror. Can you imagine the “scandal” of, say, a neon-attired John Daly teeing it up at St Andrews alongside Old Tom Morris? So while young golfers and beginners most certainly need to respect the traditions and the culture (and attire) of the game, many in Australia are realising that golf is a living, breathing and “changing” sport that must roll with the times in order to survive. So perhaps a bit of change isn’t all that bad, is it?

Juniors Shaping Australia’s Attire Debate


UNCHARTED COURSE WITH NORMAS YAKIN

Normas

Yakin

considers

himself an all-rounder: a former cocoa and oil palm planter, golf course superintendent, golf club manager, director, lecturer and consultant. He believes there are only two great mavericks in Malaysia; one of them is a former Prime Minister. Modesty, however, prevents him from telling you who the other one is. In his free time, he scribbles at

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www.mynormas.com

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here are questions in life that you will never get a straight answer. One of them is ‘how many staff do you need to maintain a golf course’? I started with more than 40. It could be 42 or more. The staff number fluctuates according to God-knowswhat and I had to have spares. They were mostly untrained foreigners. Some though, were experienced enough to know what and how to do things even if they do not know why and when. So there I was, every morning briefing all 40 (I cannot remember a time when all 42 turn up) and then going out together with them mowing or spraying. Pay was good. I was happy, they were happy, Martin was happy, the golfers were happy and we sang songs at the end of the day and danced Glee-style until the sun sets. I wish. There was always a reason to be unhappy about something. Or everything. One morning, I came to work and I had only seven workers. I could and did manage to maintain the course with that number. But we were doing about 4,000 rounds a month and for a RM100, 000-membership club the members expected that the course be maintained better than your average club. Therefore, I needed more workers. Human Resource was frantically sourcing for more foreign workers that keep on disappearing within a month of reaching our shores. Thus, we decided to employ local workers. I was asked to interview a lady who worked in a nearby golf course for the past 20 years. “So madam, what do you do every morning?” I asked.

Stuffs About Staffs

“I raked bunkers”. “In the afternoon?” “I raked leaves” “What else do you do?” “I raked bunkers in the morning and leaves in the afternoon for the past 20 years,” she said proudly. Jackpot. I just found the most experienced bunker and “leaf raker” in Malaysia. She did not get the job. In the plantation, I used to work with staff that graduated from the Agriculture Institute of Malaysia (now Universiti Putra Malaysia). I went to one of the institutes with Fadzil and recruited about six of their graduates. They were so good that within a year, four of them found jobs in other clubs as Supervisors or Assistant Superintendents.

Martin was so impressed that he volunteered to attend their next convocation. Therefore, there was Martin, and I in the front row sweating in our club blazers shaking hands with the Agriculture Minister who was probably wondering what this over-dressed white man and his good-looking assistant was doing at the convocation of Malaysia’s leading agriculture institute. We recruited scores of them that day. In addition, many more in the years (turnover was not great but it was not worse than the foreign workers’) after that. Their studies lasted three years, which include hands-on practical training on tractor driving, basics of nutrients, soil science, pesticides and engines. I remember the day when Ah Seng, my conservative chief mechanic walked into my office and said, “For the first time, a girl just had a discussion with me about engines…” or the day when a girl walked into my office arguing about some fertilizers. That was a first for me too. It almost brought tears to my eyes… I ended up with 18 staff for 18 holes and half of them had agriculture knowledge. The other half consisted of young locals and foreigners. About four of the 18 were women. I treated them all the same. “Everybody has to do everything” was our motto. They all stepped up to the challenge. 18 (relatively) educated staff was easy to train and motivate. The golf course? We actually won a Best-Maintained Course award. When I moved to up north to Batu Gajah the following year, I tried the same methods but it was a much tougher course and a different crowd. I could only manage to recruit the AIM graduates for my landscape team. In addition, we won two landscape awards! I remember having 39 staff (which includes the mechanics, admin, landscape, irrigation and drainage teams) for 27 holes and landscaping of the entire property. Nevertheless, I could not repeat the feat. The institutes changed their syllabus from three years to two and one semester was for ‘industrial training’. Some graduates could not drive tractors, some were just too ‘pretty’; and all were asking for more pay. Well, that was that. Currently the Ministry of Youth and Sports are working on a project to train staff for the golf course and UUM together with MGA, is working towards another turf certificate course. As part of the GCSAM, I am helping them. However, do not wait, you can find trainers to train your staff too; check out my website.


GOLFING TALES FROM THE LION CITY

Growing up in a golfing family with a grandmother who was an amateur champion golfer, Justine Moss developed a love of golf at an early age. After moving to Singapore in 1998 from Sydney, and opening her

How indoor golf is on the upswing in Singapore

own communications company

W

hen Urban Fairways threw open its doors back in 2007, it was the first indoor golfing facility here to introduce the concept to Singaporeans. Fast forward five years and the number has increased significantly which has shown just how appealing this ‘real’ golfing experience is - which offers a round in a fraction of the time with food and drinks on tap, and the opportunity to network and bond with colleagues, family and friends in air-conditioned comfort. Demand has been so great that Urban Fairways moved to a larger location earlier last year. There are now three golfing simulator bays in their Capital Tower base. The machines have been upgraded to top of the line Full Swing Simulators-- one can try out a number of clubs from various golf manufacturers. There is a handicap maintenance service and players can get a handicap using indoor or outdoor scores. The myscorecard.com software conforms to the USGA official guidelines, there are kids lessons conducted on the weekend and a female British PGA pro teaches there every Monday. “Indoor golf has several advantages. Firstly, our simulators make it very accurate which is important for any golfer as they want to know they are playing as well as they would on a normal course”, explains Dilip Ghosh of Urban Fairways. “Secondly, it’s time as most of our customers are senior executives who are very busy and they may not have the four to five hours it takes to play a round of 18. At Urban Fairways you can finish 18 holes in less than three hours. It is also not weather or light dependent, so there is no chance of your game being rained off. We are also significantly cheaper than most clubs in Singapore.” Situated 61 floors above Raffles Place is the 16,000 sq. ft. City Golf facility, which offers wonderful views in addition to six golf simulators with 65 of the world’s best courses and drinks from the highest open-air bar on top of Singapore’s tallest building. They charge by the hour, which starts at $30 – and you can purchase a comprehensive set of golf lesson packages as well.

a year later, Justine expanded the writing side of her business and currently writes for a number of golfing and lifestyle publications in the region, with her finger on the pulse of local golf happenings in the Lion City

There are many others and they include Greens on Screens in Chinatown, which offers 20 championship golf courses as well as a café and bar, the very central Max Swing that is located in Orchard road and Swing Perfection, which will shortly be operating out of National University of Singapore’s Sports Recreation Centre. Naturally, there are the purists who would much prefer either going to a range to practise or bask in the sunshine as they feel the crunch of the grass beneath their feet and enjoy the aesthetic appeal of the golf course. Yet Mr. Ghosh feels that Urban Fairways has given golfers the chance to practise in realistic settings. “You can go to a driving range, but it does not give you the real feeling of being on a course. With indoor golf, it is as if you are out on the course, so you have to hit a variety of shots from various positions. At a driving range, you tend to hit your clubs at maximum power all the time. This is not representative of how you play. If you shank a ball on the driving range, there is no real consequence, which is not the case in indoor golf. Indoor golf is the perfect combination of a driving range and the real game of golf, the ideal way for any player to improve his game.”

Swinging Indoors

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COVERING CARLSBAD BY SCOTT KRAMER

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Scott Kramer is a veteran golf writer based in the golf equipment capital of Carlsbad, California. In his 20-plus years covering the golf industry, the former senior editor of GOLF Magazine

has

lowered

his

playing index to 5.1, raised his IQ on the sophisticated technology used to make golf clubs, and stayed even keel on his propensity to miss short putts.

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But he always brings game to his columns.

he horizon looks bright for golf. Rounds played are up 22 percent this year through April, in the United States. Equipment sales are finally looking healthier, too. The world’s largest golf equipment company, TaylorMade-adidas Golf had just posted first quarter sales of $508 million, which was 32% higher than last year’s first quarter, when sales were up 20% from 2010. Forbes Magazine predicted in early May that TaylorMade-adidas Golf would hit sales of $2 billion for 2012. Callaway and Adams sales have been steady from last year and slightly improved, respectively. That’s a good thing.

brands have bucked that long-standing tradition of introducing products once a year, and have been churning out new goods every three months or so. That keeps the offerings fresh in most golf shops, so that when you go to the store to see what’s new from one of these brands, you can genuinely expect that whatever club from their line that you pick up and waggle is likely no more than 90 days old or so.

Coming out with products that quickly also helps the products better stand out in the public spotlight. I can tell you as a golf equipment writer that come Where did all these positive vibes come from? For January, every equipment company officially one thing, there have been some true product releases its new products for the year. innovations from all of the major brands, which seem to have struck a chord with golfers. I am talking about Writers like me have such overwhelming choice for everything from aerodynamic drivers and fairway columns that some worthy products do not make woods to extensive wedge loft offerings to golf the cut for publications, because our editors do not balls that promise tour performance to all golfers – have the space. Therefore, when a new driver or ball suddenly emerges in April or May, it stands out on regardless of their skill level. the pages of golf magazines everywhere. It also These are the kinds of products, which can quickly catches the eyes of golfers who frequent shops and help below average golfers and regular Joes become suddenly notice something new and exciting. much better off the tee box, on long approaches, and around the greens. Like with the balls, for example, can you imagine not changing your chipping stroke yet suddenly finding many of your chip shots cozying up to the pin rather than rolling 20 feet beyond? This type of thing is happening now at golf courses all around the world. Then consider the world of putters this year, what with the craze of belly and long putters. PGA Tour pros are knocking in plenty of putts using these models – more so than they were with standard-length putters. In addition, amateurs translate that into demand.

Good Times Are Rolling

According to published sales reports, sales of putters in the first quarter of 2012 were up 5.5%, in terms of units, and 11.2% in total sales. Putter prices are up 5.4%, selling for an average of $143.82 apiece. Part of that price increase can be attributed to the sales of longer models, which tend to sell with a higher price Even ultra-conservative companies such as PING tag because of the longer shaft and longer grip. and Titleist have discovered the value of introducing products at less-busy times of the year. After Hunter However, some controversy is brewing. The USGA Mahan scored a PGA Tour victory with PING’s Nome and R&A – golf’s governing bodies are determining 355 putter (pic) in February, the manufacturer if the act of anchoring longer putters to your body rushed to market with the model and received should be banned. Some top Tour pros and other plenty of attention from media and golfers, alike. prominent golf figures around the world have been continually bickering over the fairness of these Just a few weeks ago, Titleist debuted a new line of models. Nevertheless, it is that added attention and Scotty Cameron Select putters, and hope to score the attached stigma that is seemingly brought on a a spike to its sales that were already up in doublefeverish pitch to putter sales. I expect putter sales to digit growth over last year. increase significantly in the second quarter. More companies will fall into this frequentThese trends aside, there is another thing causing introduction pattern. This will add some excitement golfers to buy new products. It is particularly to your next golf shop visit. Moreover, odds are this noticeable in the success of both TaylorMade and year that you will be more likely to buy something. Adams, which now are the same company. Both


A TEACHER’S TALE

A qualified Canadian PGA Class A instructor, Mark Bates had his first bite of teaching golf in Asia when he joined the acclaimed Tony Meechai in Bangkok. Now the general manager of the Heartland Golf School in Singapore, Bates is excited about the growth of the game here and travels widely around the region conducting clinics, presenting conference papers on top of his regular instructing duties back in the

E

veryone knows now that the 2012 Masters was won without the assistance of a golf swing coach or any swing “method”. BUBBA GOLF was made up of a homemade golf swing, lots of talent borne from trial and error, and a great deal of imagination and confidence. In fact, there are unorthodox golf swings all over the PGA Tour (and all other tours) that are making some players millions of dollars. It really does not matter if the swing itself is technically perfect or not, it is a matter of whether the player manages to get the ball in the hole. For this to happen, the golfer needs to have complete confidence and belief in their ability to make the ball do what they expect it to do. This is the missing ingredient for most golfers. As a golf professional, I do think it is important to have some solid fundamentals for the golf swing and short game skills. However, I think too many students are following this quest to have a swing that is technically perfect or even more surprising to me, a swing that “looks good”. Firstly, many students do not actually have the time to put into their games to make a swing technically sound. Second, many students are physically limited by factors such as flexibility to attain; such a technical swing. Third, even if your swing IS technically sound, that does not mean you can actually make it perform on the golf course!

island state. Furthermore, I even have many students who CAN execute good swings on the golf course and still struggle to improve their scores, as they make terrible decisions on the course. On many occasions, they executed the wrong shot for the job at hand. There is a big difference between golf swing and playing golf. Too many people are learning and training for golf swings instead of spending time learning how to play golf! The practical solution is to get on the golf course more. Do not be afraid of missing some shots or expecting your game to go perfectly well. You do not have to play 18 holes 3 times a week. Even if you get out to an Executive Course, it will give you an oncourse experience that cannot be simulated at the range. The act of playing more will get you more comfortable with uneven lies, adjusting for wind and learning to recover when a bad shot does come out. As far as decision-making and course management is concern, make sure to ask your golf professional to take you for more on-course lessons. This is the “fast-track” way to learn all of the things which differentiates you from someone that does “golf swing” and someone that knows how to play golf!

PLAY GOLF - Not golf swing…

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BUILDING COURSES WITH JASON WINTER

Having lived for over 18 years in Malaysia, Jason Winter considers himself very much at home here as he does in his native majored

Tasmania. in

Having

Environmental

Design, the single-handicapper got his big break in golf course

Parlsow and Associates in 1993, where he is a partner here. When he is not tackling quicksand and

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the occasional wild animal in the pursuit of the perfect golf tract, he prefers the rough-andtumble of Aussie Rules footy.

Oh that sinking feeling!

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his stage of construction is where the golf course starts to take shape, and where we as designers, and hopefully the clients, start to get excited and see what all those spaghetti lines on countless reams of drawings really mean. On a perfect site, you could see the course laid out before you as you walk about the site, tee over here, green over there. Clichéd designers talk – “The course was already there, we just tweaked it and put the flags in!” We have been fortunate to have worked on a few sites like this, usually gently rolling hills or sandy dune areas and with sufficiently generous or land rich clients that can afford to let the course run where it naturally finds its way, but they are few and far between (the sites and the clients!). In reality, the vast majority of golf course sites require significant work to fit in all the requirements of an 18-hole course, clubhouse and car park, driving range, hotels, housing etc.

Earthworks And Shaping

The first item on the agenda, after clearing has taken place is to trim any quality topsoil off the surface, to be stockpiled for later spreading over the golf course. This topsoil will be the growing medium for the turf grass and it is vital that sufficient be collected otherwise importation of topsoil or heavy amendments to the existing soils will be necessary and this can drive up the cost of construction. Of course, some sites may not have any quality topsoil so this must be factored into early construction cost estimates and planning. During the design and documentation stage, after our contour plans have been completed, we construct computer models, calculate the total cut, and fill for the entire site. Our earthwork volume

© EGP

design when he joined E&G

drawings will show where on the site cut and fill is to take place, and how much, so that the contractors can plan their works and haul roads around the site. Surveyors will then peg on site the locations for all the features and high and low points for the golf course (thousands of them!); demarcating the levels, that area should be filled or excavated. From the high areas excavators and trucks will cut and haul material to low areas requiring filling. Fillings are done in layers and compacted with a heavy vibrating roller to achieve maximum density, as well as to prevent any settlement in the future. The bulk earthworks stage will cut and fill the site to within half a metre or less of the finished levels of the golf course. One of our critical tasks during earthworks, particularly in tropical climates, is to control the silt runoff from exposed earth during rainfalls. This is a perennial issue and easily the one that gives us the most headaches. No matter how much prevention and control is specified, there is a heavy reliance on the will of the contractor to clean up the mess, either immediately (easier), or at the end (more difficult), and the will of the client to enforce the clean up. There are also many contractual issues, and of course issues with surrounding or upstream developments. A great deal of planning and constant attention is required to deal with the problems Mother Nature dishes out. Our recent project at Palm Garden is a catchment for the Putrajaya wetlands, and major work was done to construct and maintain silt traps to prevent any contamination downstream during the earthworks stage in which around 3mil cubic metres of earth was shifted.


BUILDING COURSES WITH JASON WINTER

Gaining a good understanding with the shapers, usually after some sample shaped up areas, checking drawings, lots of arm waving and many discussions on sexy curves, is critical for the smooth running of the rest of the golf course construction process. All successive stages of the construction, drainage, irrigation, grassing etc must wait for the final shape to be achieved before they can commence.

Earthworks and topsoil spreading in progress on holes 10 and 18 of Palm Garden Golf Club as viewed from the clubhouse

© EGP

Once an area has been brought to level, the shapers will come in to work their magic. These people are a breed unto themselves, operating various machinery, excavators, dozers, bobcats etc like an extension of their own body, like the AMP suits (Google it and you will get the picture!) in the Avatar movie. Most are also secret golf course designers as well I am sure and love to add their own touches here and there!

© EGP

Larger machines will be used first to “rough” shape the course to a stage where drainage can be installed and rainwater can be much more easily controlled. The irrigation mainline will now be installed too. The topsoil will then be retrieved, or imported, and spread evenly over the golf course. Irrigation lateral lines to all the sprinkler points will then be trenched and installed, buggy path constructed and trees planted, all making a mess of the shaping that was done.

Shaping a greenside bunker with a D2 bulldozer

Soil amendments will now be spread over the course and rotovated into the soil/sand. The shapers will then return with smaller machines such as bobcats, back pushers and sand pros to fine tune the golf course shape and “tie in” to the paths, trees etc. A good deal of manual labour will also be used in hard to get to areas and in the final trimming of tees, bunkers and greens and this will be discussed in upcoming issues.

Various types of silt traps are used to catch and slow down outflow of water

© EGP

These critical stages must be done quickly and carefully in sequence to avoid damage during heavy rain falls. Protection measures such as netting, cut off trenches and sand bags must be in place to avoid erosion and contamination of the sand and clogging of the drainage.

If sand capping has been included, and budgeted, (topsoil spreading will be limited to rough areas not covered by sand), the base shape must now be cleaned up and recompacted. The many kilometres of subsoil drainage installed, the sand carefully spread at an even depth over areas to be covered where green surrounds and fairways (extents determined by the budget).

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SHORT GAME FIXES WITH ANDREW MYLES

Though hailing from the Home of Golf, Andrew Myles is very much the Malaysian, having settled down here for close to a decade. A recognised Class AA British PGA professional and a certified AimPoint instructor, he mixes his passion for short game and putting with a methodological

accelerated

performance coaching style. His tips can be found on

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www.andrewmylesgolf.com

Bump & Run: C The Forgotten Masterstroke of the Short Game

oming from Scotland, where the wind blows hard the bump & run shot with a 7 or 8 iron was a standard shot during my childhood. Played like a putt it was easy to control the spin and roll on the ball, making long chip shots easy. With the introduction of more bunkers, water and wedges, it is a shot that has slowly disappeared. The bump & run is an essential part of any great player’s short game and an essential addition if you do not play it already. Select a 7 or 8 iron and set up to the ball by gripping down on the club, small stance, ball towards the back foot and hands forward. Play the shot like a putt making sure to keep your weight towards the front foot and your hands leading the club head. A great drill to develop touch and feel is to create smaller targets on the chipping green (I have used ping-pong balls) and work on chipping the ball between the targets. As you get better, you can make the space between targets smaller and you can alter the length of each target.


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NSGCC CLUB CHAMPIONSHIP Wee the toast of Nilai

F

our-handicapper George Wee notched tournament best rounds of 74 and 72 to claim the Nilai Springs Golf & Country Club Annual Championship, which took place from April 28-29. The Kluang-based golfer topped the gross standings, six strokes ahead of Mohd Amin Haris (5), who carded two matching rounds of 76. Fivehandicappers Amirudin Ali (80-75) and Haji Soldin Sidol (77-78) finished tied for third with a 155 overall. In the nett division, Nabil Sanusi (12) clinched the championship on countback ahead of Mohd Zulkepli Juri (24) and Andrew Dominic Roche (19) after all three had finished on 138.

With the AGSSG Golf card, the doors swing open for you at more than 70 golf clubs throughout Malaysia. Enjoy preferential golfing rates, be it on a weekday or a weekend. THE #1 GOLF CARD is now MORE than just a golf card! • MORE than just a plastic card – it’s a bio-energy health card! • MORE than just golfing in Malaysia. Now you can golf in Indonesia too! • MORE tournaments in 2012; the first ever to have its own premium series of golf tournaments exclusively for cardholders. • ALL-IN PRICE which includes Golfer's Insurance and 1-touch S.O.S Auto Assist Service 24/7 ... NOTHING more to pay!

AKCC CHARITY GOLF 2012

Three charitable organisation benefit from golf game

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yer Keroh Country Club had every right to be proud of itself after their charity golf event on April 28 raised a sum of RM28,000. A total of 100 members as well as well-wishers participated in the afternoon event, which culminated with a dinner and prize giving. Three deserving organisations, namely AgapeCARE Society, Persatuan Kanner Melaka (Autism) and Persatuan Penjagaan Kanak-Kanak Terencat Akal Melaka were selected to receive the proceeds. Club captain Rom Muslim was pleased with the overall success of the event. “We used to organise an annual charity event with the Malacca Japanese Association in the past but I’m pleased that our first attempt on our own after a five-year hiatus has been a great success.”

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TEE BOX

CARLSBERG GOLF CLASSIC 19th edition set to be Carlsberg’s best

The nation’s longest running amateur golf circuit, the Carlsberg Golf Classic, is set to return for another thrilling run beginning June 3 at Horizon Hills Golf & Country Club.

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The 19th edition of the amateur golf circuit will traverse the length and breadth of Malaysia, including five legs in East Malaysia before culminating at the national finals at Saujana Golf & Country Club later in the year. “Carlsberg Golf Classic first started as a

modest, localised golf tournament back in 1986 and over the years, the tournament has grown by leaps and bounds to be recognised as one of the biggest amateur golf event in the country,” said Carlsberg MD Soren Ravn during a press conference held at Palm Garden Golf Club on May 17. The Golf Classic will also offer impressive Hole-in-One prizes for the preliminary legs including a Titoni watch courtesy of ATG

CILT CHARITY GOLF 2012 Smooth show for inaugural CILT event

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he inaugural CILT charity golf tournament saw 65 avid golfers from member companies of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) Malaysia turn up to their part for a charitable cause on April 26. The players were regaled to an excellent golfing challenge at Glenmarie Golf & Country Club and the event concluded with a superb prize-giving luncheon. Eight-handicapper Mazlan Kushimohud claimed the to prize with a score of 39 Stableford points ahead of the quartet of Ahmad Sanusi (14), Habib Ismail (15) and Azahar Shariff, who finished with 38 points. The grand lucky draw prize went to G. Maramuthu.

Watch and a package tour for four to play in Siem Reap, Cambodia courtesy of Liberty Golf Services, valued at over RM20,000 in total. In conjunction with the tournament’s 19th anniversary, a special prize dubbed the 19th Hole will be offered to add a fun element to the competition on top of RM1 million worth of exciting prizes up for grabs. Hap Seng Land, Hap Seng Star, Panasonic, FootJoy, Callaway, Cozzia, Titoni, Liberty Golf Services, ParGolf, Kordel’s, Gatorade and SunPlay have come on board as sponsors and event partners.


1st CILT CHARITY GOLF 2012

GLENMARIE GOLF & COUNTRY CLUB 26th April 2012 Malaysia

Thank You

Sponsors !

WE APPRECIATE YOUR SUPPORT & COMMITMENT TO OUR CAUSE!


TEE BOX

ALLIANCE BANK ilovegolf TOURNAMENT Cross-border appeal for exclusive members’ circuit

lliance Bank will return as the title sponsor of the second A edition of the members-only ilovegolf tournament after an overwhelming response for the inaugural event last year. The Alliance Bank ilovegolf tournament will officially tee off on May 26 at Bukit Jawi Golf Resort in Penang and will feature 18 rounds, including four new venues in Kedah, Melaka, Pahang and Terengganu as well as two overseas events at Marina Bay Golf Course in Singapore and Vietnam’s Song Be Golf Course in Vietnam. This marks the first taken by MST Golf towards bringing forth a regional tournament, further strengthening the benefits extended to ilovegolf members in Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam. “We are very pleased to be invited to be the title sponsor of this prestigious amateur golf tournament. We are always very keen on supporting activities that provide a platform for business networking and more importantly, to raise the level of golf sportsmanship in the country,” said Alliance Bank’s head of SME banking Steve Miller. For the second-year running, the final round will return to Sutera Harbour Golf & Country Club in Sabah on December 20. Some of the notable prizes on offer include a6:33 AKIRA KGPA quarter.pdf 1 4/19/12 PM ADR Gold Vintage golf set worth RM37,000 as the hole-in-one prize.

PRUDENTIAL ASTRO MASTERS Son thrives at rainy Orna leg

S

on Tong Leong deservedly won his ticket to the grand final in Surabaya when he carded a three-over 75 to win the gross title in the sixth leg of the Prudential Astro Masters at Orna Golf & Country Club in Melaka. Son had a tough front nine in adverse weather conditions with two bogeys and a double bogey but came home strongly, birdieing the 10th and difficult 18th. The result saw his coast to a comfortable three-stroke victory over Korean Lee Jeong Gin. In the nett category, 11-handicapper Chan Teng Chow and three others finished with four-under 68s but Chan got the edge on countback, based on his lower handicap.

CLEVELAND SRIXON CSSB OPEN Foo triumphs in Kota Permai

A

two-over 74 was enough for Eric Foo to emerge as the gross champion in the opening leg of the Cleveland Srixon CSSB Open at the Kota Permai Golf and Country Club on May 6.

Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam (KGPA) is situated within Bukit Kiara, about 18km from Kuala Lumpur City Centre. A 27-hole layout designed by renowned American course architect Ronald Fream. The championship course (Hills and Lakes) is a classic par 72 golf course measuring 5,989 metres with landscaped lush fairways culminating in manicured verdant greens. The third nine (Forest), measuring 2,711 metres is equally scenic and challenging, playing around the natural jungle environment.

www.kgpagolf.com

Call us to book your tee time: Bukit Kiara, off Jalan Damansara, Peti Surat 12137, Jalan Pantai Baru, Bukit Kiara, Kuala Lumpur 50768, Malaysia

Tel: 03-7957 3344 Fax: 03-7957 7821

Three strokes behind Foo in second was Salehuddin Othman with a round of 77 points. Both Eric and Salehuddin with both earning themselves a 4D3N fully paid golfing trip for the grand final in Kancanaburi and Bangkok. The duo will be joined by A Medal winner Ooi Eng Chuan, who netted 42 points. The second and third place in the A Medal went to Ng Kok Keong and Lee Peng Chin on 39 and 42 points respectively.


GOLF DIARY June 22 - 24 Raiffeisenbank Prague Golf Masters Albatross GR,Prague, Czech Republic €250,000 May 24 - 27 110th Malaysian Amateur Open Glenmarie GCC, Selangor May 29 - 31 MPI Saujana Amateur Championship Saujana GCC, Selangor June 5 - 7 Malaysian Junior Closed Championship Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam, Kuala Lumpur June 6 - 7 8th Kelab Golf Miri Junior Golf Championship (Dato’ Sebastian Ting Challenge) Kelab Golf Miri, Sarawak June 8 - 10 Terengganu Amateur Open TBA June 8 - 10 Etiqa Selangor International Junior Masters Seri Selangor GC, Selangor June 12 - 14 5th KGNS Mazda Ladies Open Subang National GC, Selangor

May 29 - 31 29th Malaysian Ladies Amateur Open Kuala Lumpur GCC, Kuala Lumpur

May 23 - 26 I&P Kinrara Classic Kinrara GC, Selangor RM125,000 June 6 - 9 Melaka Classic Ayer Keroh GCC, Melaka RM125,000 June 12 - 14 Qualifying School Kinrara GC & Impian GCC, Selangor

June 14 - 17 Queen’s Cup Santiburi Samui GCC, Samui, Thailand US$300,000

May 24 - 27 BMW PGA Championship Wentworth Club, Surrey, England €4,500,000 May 31 - Jun 03 ISPS Handa Wales Open The Celtic Manor Resort, Newport, Wales £1,800,000 June 6 - 9 Nordea Masters Bro Hof Slott GC,Stockholm,Sweden €1,500,000 June 14 - 17 U.S. Open Championship Olympic Club, California, USA US$8,000,000 June 14 - 17 Saint-Omer Open Aa Saint Omer GC, Lumbres, France €500,000

May 24 - 27 Crowne Plaza Invitational Colonial Country CC, Texas, USA US$6,400,000 May 31 - Jun 3 The Memorial Tournament Muirfield Village GC,Ohio, USA US$6,200,000 June 7 - 10 FedEx St. Jude Classic TPC Southwind, Tennessee, USA Purse: $5,600,000 June 14 - 17 U.S. Open Championship Olympic Club, California, USA US$8,000,000 June 21 - 24 Travelers Championship TPC River Highlands, Connecticut, USA US$6,000,000

June 21 - 24 BMW International Open Golf Club Gut Lärchenhof, Cologne, Germany €2,000,000

May 24 - 27 UniCredit Ladies German Open Golfpark Gut Häusern, Munich, Germany €350,000 June 1 - 3 Deloitte Ladies Open Golfclub Broekpolder, Rotterdam, Netherlands €250,000 June 8 - 10 Ladies Slovak Open Golf Resort Tale, Tále, Slovakia €225,000 June 14 - 17 Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open Golf Gerre Losone, Ticino, Switzerland €525,000

June 1 - 3 Shoprite LPGA Classic Seaview Resort, New Jersey, USA US$1,500,000 June 7 - 10 Wegmans LGPA Championship Locust Hill CC, New York, USA US$2,500,000 June 21 - 24 Manulife Financial LPGA Classic Grey Silo GC, Ontario, Canada US$1,300,000

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The ClubHouse May 2012