Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: Golf course managers, course superintendents, club managers, greenkeepers and mechanics turned out in record numbers to support the third Golf Course Superintendents Association of Malaysia (GCSAM) and Asian Golf Industry Federation (AGIF) Turfgrass Management Seminar.
Organised under the auspices of the Malaysian Golf Association (MGA), the seminar and field day at the award-winning TPC Kuala Lumpur attracted more than 90 attendees, an increase of 30 per cent on last year’s attendance figures.
The gathering teed-off a memorable week that saw TPC Kuala Lumpur also play host to the world’s finest female golfers in the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia. A fortnight earlier, the famed venue that is a Golf Course Facility Member of the AGIF was the centre of world golfing attention when it staged the PGA Tour’s CIMB Classic.
Jack Cheong, the GCSAM’s President, said: “It was truly one of the best and most beneficial seminars that I have attended with many practical ideas and solutions.
“We thank all those that attended for their support. The Malaysia Turfgrass Management Seminar has established itself as an important date on the GCSAM’s annual calendar and it is our hope that it will continue to flourish in the years ahead.
“We have received plenty of constructive feedback on what worked well this year – and areas that could be improved upon. We are taking on board all of the comments with a view to making changes for next year.
“The GCSAM is continuing to work with the MGA towards improving the condition of golf courses throughout Malaysia. As a national organisation, the association is committed to continuous education.”
Cheong’s sentiments were echoed by Mohd Nizam Othman, Head of Agronomy at TPC Kuala Lumpur.
He said: “It was encouraging to see the event so well attended with representatives from 24 golf clubs in Malaysia. By staging seminars and field days such as this, through our collaboration with the AGIF, course superintendents from all over Malaysia are provided with a wonderful opportunity to hear new ideas as well as being exposed to the latest products in the marketplace.
“They will then be able to go back to their home clubs and put into practice what they have learned which will, hopefully, result in improved course conditions.”
Agronomy experts Bruce Williams and Jordan Fairweather headed the line-up of speakers at the seminar at Kuala Lumpur’s Sime Darby Convention Centre.
A past President of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America who has taught workshops and seminars throughout the world for the last 30 years, Williams talked about the history of greens keeping.
Fairweather, Group Director of Agronomy with Troon Golf, focused his presentation on ‘greenkeeping around the world’. After stints in America, Scotland, Abu Dhabi, Bulgaria and Bahrain, Fairweather now oversees 72 holes of golf in Els Club Malaysia’s three locations.
The seminar concluded with a GCSAM-led round-table discussion on the Malaysian golf course industry.
The afternoon field day featured the latest equipment from a variety of companies including Campey Turf Care Systems, Indigrow, Jacobsen, John Deere, ProCar, Rain Bird, Shibaura and Toro.
Eric Lynge, the AGIF’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Enhancing turfgrass manager knowledge and skills in golf course maintenance is the aim of these educational seminars.
“With speakers of the calibre of Bruce and Jordan, there is so much to be gained for anyone who is in the business of turf grass. What was particularly pleasing this year was the willingness of attendees to actively take part in the seminar by asking questions.
“We are grateful for the support and encouragement from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of Malaysia, the Malaysian Golf Association, the staff and management at TPC Kuala Lumpur and all sponsors.”
The Malaysian Turfgrass Management Seminar was the fifth event in the AGIF series of Turfgrass Management Seminars and Field Days in 2017.
In January, the AGIF supported the Sentosa Agronomy Superintendent Volunteer Programme in Singapore while February saw the staging of the AGIF Turfgrass Management Exposition in Pattaya, Thailand.
The Vietnam Turfgrass Management Seminar took place at BRG Legend Hill Golf Resort in the last week of April. The following month, the Philippine Golf Course Management Conference was held at The Orchard Golf and Country Club.
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