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Golf lessons for Harbour View Primary students

Monday, June 18, 2018

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IT was all about the world of golf for students from Harbour View Primary School in Kingston, who were treated to lessons in the sport by organisers of the Jamaica Pro Golf League Series 2018 and JN Bank at Caymanas Golf and Country Club in St Catherine recently.

The event, which was targeted at stimulating the 19 students' interest in the sport at an early age, offered the students a short introduction to the “club-and-ball” sport, after which they were able to put what they learned into practice.

Major Desmon Brown, general manager, Independence Park Limited and organiser of the pro golf series, noted that one of the main hindrances in getting more young people interested in the sport is the cost.

“The truth is that golf is not cheap. The equipment — the clubs, balls — and the use of the facilities come at a cost, and so this creates a challenge for young people,” he said.

Major Brown, however, noted that there are opportunities available for young people with a talent for the sport to get the assistance they need.

“There are a lot of golf scholarships available for people who want to further their education and also play the sport at a professional level,” he said.

He further noted that the pro golf series is also an opportunity for local players and caddies to get the exposure required to push the sport forward.

“We have a lot of talent in Jamaica. A lot of the skills required to play golf are the same skills used in cricket — hand-eye coordination — and we have a lot of young Jamaicans who are great at that, and what we are looking for is to identify people who would not normally gravitate to golf to develop these skills,” he said.

He explained that golf is a challenging sport which requires a great deal of athleticism, patience and mental strength.

Sable-Joy McLaren, group event organiser at the JN Group, said the children who are participants in the JN School Savers programme were enthusiastic about learning the game.

“We don't see a lot of young Jamaicans gravitating to play this sport,” McLaren indicated.

“Therefore, with the Jamaica Pro Golf League Series currently taking place, we thought it was an opportune time to expose them to some of the rudiments of the game.”

Gabrielle Russell, head girl at Habour View Primary, said she was thrilled to be playing golf for the first time.

“This has been an awesome experience. It's not an easy game because it includes a lot of rules. It's also about precision, as you need to know exactly where to stand, how to hit the ball, and how to keep steady and focused on your target,” she related.

The 12-year-old added: “I'm a track athlete and golf is very different from what I'm used to, as it requires a lot more concentration and it has a lot more rules.”

For Kharissa Cole it was also a fun and exciting experience.

“I really enjoyed myself as I learned a lot about the game. I learned about terms such as a hole in one, par, drive and putt; as well as the fact that golf is a game of concentration and focus,” she said.

Kharissa said golf is a sport she would be interested in playing in future.

The students were later rewarded with certificates of participation.

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