51st National Golf from Thursday

51st Amateur Golf Championship of Pakistan

The 51st Amateur Golf Championship of Pakistan will be contested at the par 72 Royal Palm Golf & Country Club Golf Course from Thursday 12th April to Sunday 15th April 2012.

This was stated by Taimur Hassan,Honorary Secretary,Pakistan Golf Federation in a press conference attended and adressed by Omer Mir,General Manager,Royal Palm,Col(r)Jameel Khalid,Director Golf,Mehmood Aziz,Tournament Director and Khawaja Pervaiz Saeed,Director Media of the tournament.Taimur said that the most  heartening and delightful feature of this National Amateur Golf Championship was that top golf players from four countries are a part of the Championship and with their presence the competition attains the status of a grand international championship. The participating countries are:

a.                  Afghanistan
b.                  Bangladesh
c.                  Iran
d.                Sri Lanka

Col(r)Jameel shared with the media that the  first Amateur Golf Championship of Pakistan was held way back in 1961 at the Rawalpindi Golf Club, where J. G. Donwnie picked up the first title. Since then the Amateur Golf Championship of Pakistan is being held annually and is generally known as an occasion for the charge of the Champions. Played over four days, 72 holes, this premier event of the country’s amateur golfing calendar crowns the Men and Ladies National Champion of the year.

Col(r)Jameel also said that after 1961, the trophy had been changing hands till 1970. From 1971 onwards, one amateur,  Taimur Hassan won the coveted trophy consecutively for the next 11 years when  Imran Ahmed and  Faisal Qureshi started to pose challenge. In all Taimur Hassan won the title 15 times. No other player of the country has achieved this honour.
O
nly one player, Shahid Javed Khan has won this national title thrice while Hashim Khan, Zeeshan Ali and Faisal Qureshi have captured the title two times each.Others who became champions won the title once but thereafter could not duplicate the performance. Col(r)Jameel also said that besides the international participants ,the top amateur golf players of the country have converged to Royal Palm for competing in this event.For four consecutive days, good golf will be on display at the 18 holes, par-72 Royal Palm Golf and Country Club Golf Course, already known for its challenging length and demanding layout.

Many golfers will be affected by the sweat, stress and strain of this extremely competitive golf fixture that will test the technique, temperament and traits of the best golfers.In return for the excellence on the golf course, the championship promises sufficient individual and team rewards for ones self and his countries honour that keep them motivated. After all, one must keep in mind that the game is unforgiving. More so, on the Royal Palm Golf Course the championship tees, undulating lie of the ball and tricky greens tend to induce so many extra strokes.

All players will be set to meet the ardent challenge of the host golf course and bring in good cards.  Yet only the one who is able to maintain an even tempo from the tee to the green will triumph to be crowned the best amateur golfer in Pakistan.All in all this is going to be a championship worth watching and remembering.

As regards the format of the Championship,the events are as follows:

•    National Men Amateur Championship is an individual competitive golf event played over four days. Any number of players who fulfill the conditions of the tournament including the players of the invited countries are eligible to participate.  Generally the field is of 140 players. The winner who submits the lowest score over the four days is the National Champion for the year.

•    International Men Team Match is played over two days of competitive golf. Each invited country and Pakistan will be eligible to enter a team of two players. Scores of both the players will be counted for the overall team score. The team with the lowest two days score takes the trophy.

•    J. R. Jayewardene Team Trophy is a team match stroke play between Pakistan and Sri Lanka over 18 holes. The team with the lowest gross score is the winner team. It will be played on 14th April.

•    Inter Association Team Match is a team match played over 54 hole (three days) between the four golf Associations of Pakistan. Each team will comprise of four members and three best scores will count for the team score of the day. The team with the lowest gross score over the first three days will be the winner team.
•    Ladies Championship will be contested over threre rounds.

Omer Mir,General Manager,Royal Palm stated that the presence of international players is a good omen for the country and the world will see that we are a peaceful country,capable of great things. As for the playing arena,it was said that the Royal Palm Golf Course has a yardage of 6820, the first nine holes are 3400 yards and the back nine are 3420 yards. This course has four Par 5’s, ten Par 4’s and four Par 3’s.The Greens are in good shape, rolling true and at medium-fast pace. They offer the player a chance for good scoring due to the holding qualities and the attractive speed. It will be important for the players to hit the right areas on the greens to avoid the speedy down hill putts due to the firm but fair pin placements.

The Fairways are in immaculate condition with the ball sitting up nicely and welcoming a cleanly struck fairway shot. The ball is not running as far as usual due to the damp atmosphere so the golf course will be playing a little longer than the yardage suggests.The Rough is set at a medium height. Missing the fairways from the tee will make approach shots difficult to control and will also make the longer holes difficult to reach in regulation play.

All in all the golf course has improved its image tremendously and all golfers of significance love to play here and it is now regarded as one of the good ones in the region.
The Championship is sponsored by Zong with Coke as the official drink.

Title Defenders

Defending Champion                              :Hamza Amin
Ladies Champion                                      : Miss Ghazal Yasmeen
International Team Match                 :  Pakistan
President J. R Jayewardene               : Pakistan
Inter Provincial Team Match            : Federal