The BEST of GOLF
Top performers and high achievers in the local golf industry were feted in the 2016 Malaysian Golf Awards presented by Club Car, held on May 21 at Templer Park Country Club. Organised by ParGolf in collaboration with the Malaysian Golf Association (MGA), the presentation ceremony was staged in conjunction with the Malaysian Amateur Open at Templer Park. The Malaysian Golf Awards is Malaysia’s only industry-wide golf awards, recognising deserving individuals and organisations that have excelled in the various aspects of the golf industry. The selection of award winners was based on voting by a 50-strong panel comprising MGA committee members, ParGolf personnel and selected golf industry personalities, except for the Special Awards where the winners were selected by ParGolf. “As the governing body of golf in Malaysia, the MGA is keen to recognise achievements in golf across all aspects of the industry. The Malaysian Golf Awards gives us the chance to do so and we hope that this will spur golfers, golf clubs and everyone involved in the industry to greater heights,” said MGA president YB Senator Admiral Tan Sri Dato’ Setia Mohd Anwar Mohd Nor.
A total of 19 awards were presented in 16 categories to recipients from all facets of the golf industry, from the professional game, elite amateurs and juniors to coaches, golf clubs and corporate sponsors. Highlights of the night included the Coveted Best Overall Golf Experience Award which was won by The Els Club Teluk Datai and the Best Maintained Golf Course Award which was bagged by Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club, both for the second year running. Kuantan’s newest course, Mahkota Golf & Country Club, was a hands-down winner of the Best New Golf Course Award, while Sungai Long Golf & Country Club snared the Most Improved Golf Course accolade. In the professional players categories, Danny Chia regained the Professional Golfer of the Year – Male award after his fabulous 2015 season, while Kelly Tan was Malaysian Professional Golfer of the Year – Female for the second year running. Ben Leong was named Comeback Golfer of the Year after his successes on tour in 2015 following a protracted battle with a back injury. There were some deserving winners in the amateur players categories, with Amir Nazrin Jailani and Galven Kendall Green announced as joint winners of the Malaysian Amateur Golfer of the Year – Male award. Nur Durriyah Damian once again bagged the Malaysian Amateur Golfer of the Year – Female title. The junior awards went to Daeng Abdul Rahman and Winnie Ng respectively. Standout performances in 2015 were also recognised, highlighted by Arie Irawan who took the Outstanding Performance of the Year award for his four-shot victory in the ICTSI Eagle Ridge Invitational in the Philippines. Three professionals earned Breakthrough Golfer of the Year awards for career-milestone victories in 2015, namely Michelle Koh (CTBC Shanghai Ladies Classic), Wilson Choo (PGM LADA Langkawi Championship) and Khor Kheng Hwai (PGM Penang Championship). For their support of golf and its development over the years, Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam and Sime Darby Property received Outstanding Contribution to Golf awards. There was a poignant moment when the Merit Award for Services to Golf was presented posthumously to Sabah-based Australian coach Duncan Moodie, who passed away of malaria in March this year. Famed for his no-nonsense style, Moodie came to Malaysia in 2005 and was coach of the 2009 Malaysian SEA Games team and the Malaysian Ladies Golf Association’s ‘Golf For Girls’ programme. He set up the Pacific Golf Academy in Kota Kinabalu seven years ago and has coached many of Malaysia’s leading players. At the time of his passing, Moodie was head coach for the Sabah SUKMA squad.
“It’s extremely gratifying for us to be able to recognise golf’s top performers and outstanding contributors through the Malaysian Golf Awards. We would like to thank Jebsen & Jessen for their sponsorship and support of this year’s edition, as well as our partners the Malaysian Golf Association,” said Suzannah Gun Palmer, publisher of ParGolf.