07 January 2010

The All-new PGA of Malaysia

Report by: Editor, Golf Malaysia Magazine

After a period of uncertainty due to the infighting and a lacklustre Malaysia Professional Golfers Association (MPGA), an ad-hoc committee was appointed by the Sports Commissioner to look into ways and means of uplifting the sport of professional golf and to bring order and decorum to the ranks of professional golfers in the country. Apart from a total revamp of MPGA, the committee also recommended that the whole golf industry should be brought in to focus on moving professional golf to a new level of professionalism, with greater transparency and more efficient administration of the sport.

The result is the formation of an all-new governing body for professional golf in Malaysia, the Professional Golfers Association of Malaysia (PGA of Malaysia), which was officially launched in late December 2009 by the Minister of Youth and Sports, Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek.

“We want to bring Malaysian golf to international standards. In order to do that, [Malaysian professionals] have to win and produce the top ten players in the region,” Datuk Ahmad Shabery said, adding that Malaysian golf has to be profit-making.

The PGA of Malaysia is mapping out a strategy to provide training, education and professional development framework to ensure well qualified and accredited professionals are available to grow and develop golf in Malaysia at all levels, from junior participation to professional tournaments.

The Pro Tem Committee Member of PGA of Malaysia, Dato’ Thomas Lee, said in his speech during the launch that the objectives of this new PGA of Malaysia can only be achieved if proper funding comes through to aid the association, especially in the running of tournaments and the development clinics that the PGA aspires to run.

“While the government has been very supportive, we now appeal to the private sector to contribute equally to the development of a huge industry that can contribute positively to our economy.”

This new association is also committed to look after the interests of all professional golfers and is committed to hold at least two tournaments a month.

Tentative PGA of Malaysia Calendar 2010
Feb/Mar PNB Kinrara Open Kinrara GCC,
4 – 7 Mar Maybank
Malaysian Open
Kuala Lumpur GCC, Kuala Lumpur US$2 mil
TBC PNB Impian Classic Impian GCC,
Apr/May PNB Lanjut Masters Lanjut GCC,
May/Jun Salcon Negeri Masters Seremban Int’l GC, Negeri Sembilan RM500,000
Jun/Jul ASEAN Tour TBC US$60,000
Jul/Aug Terengganu Masters Tuanku Mizan GC, Terengganu RM180,000
Jul/Aug Worldwide Holdings Selangor Masters Seri Selangor GC, Selangor US$300,000
Aug/Sept Steve Challenge Cinta Sayang GCR, Kedah RM80,000
28 – 31 Oct Iskandar Johor Open Royal Johor CC,
US$2.25 mil
Oct/Nov PGA Tour The Mines RGC, Selangor US$6 mil
Dec PNB Championships TBC RM80,000