Having written my blogs covering other golfers making news for the past few months, please accept my apologies if this time I blow my own trumpet.
Firstly I admit that I am not a good golfer. My handicap registered by the Emirates Golf Federation a few years back is a mere 28, although some of my friends call me a bandit.
Here in Thailand I normally average 105 on my card, and that is tough going as it seems I am apparently allergic to sand!
In fact as a journalist, I try to write my articles and reports based on my own abilities as ‘a fat older golf tourist.’
I do however love golf, and always try to improve my own game…..currently I am heavily into the course management of my game. No heroics here, just get round in one piece, and keep the score below three figures if possible!
Last week I was invited to join a number of editors and journalists from Europe and the United States at the fabulous Thai Country Club here in Bangkok.
These respected reporters were here on a week’s trip to check out exactly why Thailand is one of the top golf destinations in the World.
Partnering Peter from the UK, Wee from Thailand and Alice from the United States, our four ball started off at midday. I am on the left.
I had managed to secure the services of one of Thai Country Club’s top caddies Khun Chob, who is also herself a mean golfer as well.
At the first two par 4’s I scored bogeys, and then I conquered my fears of the third, a tricky par 3, and made par.
Unfortunately my third shot on the 4th hole was one for the cameras (Heroics again!!!)and it went into the water. I ended up with had a horrible 8 on this clever par 5, which some say it is possibly one of the top ten holes in Thailand.
By the time we got to the 9th hole, my caddie Khun Chob informed me I was on 46. My usual figure for the front nine has been 52-55 so nothing special here I thought.
By the time we got to the tenth she told me I had actually made it in 46. She had tried to explain that if I got five on the ninth my score would be 46. Maybe it was her tactics to make me more relaxed, anyway I felt a lot better, and made par on the par 3 11th hole.
By now Khun Chob was reading the greens like a James Patterson paperback, and my putter was getting hotter too.
Things were going well and by the time I reached the 18th I had scored five pars and I was doing well.
However my drive on the 18th went over the trees onto the 14th fairway, and I thought that was it. Chob told me not to play out back onto the 18th fairway, but to carry on down the 14th parallel with the 18th fairway instead. My third shot was over some small palm trees and my ball landed on the green. Two putts and I made five.
I had made 93 which you might think is nothing special, but for me it was my best round to date. A record for me that felt like my own British Open title.
Thai Country Club has played host to the likes of Ernie and Tiger who played there in the 90’s. Golf Digest in the States rates the course their number one in Thailand too. So not only did I break my own record, but at one of the more difficult courses in Asia.
Now I cannot wait to get on some more courses here across Thailand and try to break my own record. I am beginning to understand why the country is called The Kingdom of Smiles.
I am still smiling!