An exclusive interview with the internationally-renowned Thai golfers—the Jutanugarn Sisters!
Hosted by the Tourism Authority of Thailand, the Amazing Thailand Invitational 2018 was held on September 27th, 2018 at the Alpine Golf Club, one of Thailand’s most prestigious clubs.
Crowd Stunned by Appearance of Special Guests
What was so ‘’Amazing’’ about this event was the invitation of the Jutanugarn sisters. Cameras flashed wildly and the crowd was thrilled by the appearance of the LPGA winners.
The Strength of Optimism
Although the sisters rarely do individual interviews with media, they were kind enough to answer our questions before the reception.
GDO- “What do you keep in mind when competing at the top level?”
Ariya- “I concentrate on golf. That is my commitment to professional golf. I concentrate on every single tournament and focus on every single shot. As a result, I am always in the top ten of the rankings.”
Ariya- “I always try to think positively. Whenever I hit a poor shot I just move on and focus on how I can recover with my next shot. I keep this in mind whenever I’m not playing golf as well.”
The Secret Behind the Sisters’ Success: “The Country of Thailand Giving us its Full Support”
GDO- “Both being based in Thailand, what do you think of the golf environment here?”
Moriya- “We are grateful for the golf environment here. Compared with other countries, the climate is relatively suited for golfing all year round, which is a big advantage. The warm climate is physically beneficial, which ties into reducing the risks of injuries, and the courses are well maintained. These reasons might be why we are playing well based in Thailand. I am grateful for being able to play golf where I was born and raised, getting not only physical support, but also mental support from friends and family. Thai food is also indispensable for physical strength needed to play golf.’’
Ariya teases her sister who loves to cook by saying, ‘’You’re better at cooking than golf.” Moriya replies with a big smile saying, “Cooking Thai food is important for taking your mind off the game once in a while.”
Nasa and Ai are Wonderful Women
GDO- “What’s your impression of Japan?’’
Ariya answered with a straight face- “I have been to Japan about 5 times in the past and is one of my favorite countries. Everybody is polite and trustworthy. Especially Nasa (Nasa Hataoka); we are close in age and competing in the LPGA tour, she is an exemplary person. And Ai (Ai Miyazato), we have the same golf coach, and I know her very well. She is a wonderful woman and I respect her a lot.”
“All Aspects of Thailand is Great. I hope You Visit Numerous Times.”
GDO- “Finally, please tell us why Thailand is so fascinating to Japanese golf fans.”
Moriya- “In Thailand, you can enjoy golf with superb course conditions all year round. The caddies are nice and they are there to support you for having an enjoyable game of golf. I also recommend Thai food and there are many more things to do here besides golf. Please come visit Thailand, I’m sure you will have a great time.”
The Secret to Putting is to Imagine the Putt
After the opening ceremony, the Jutanugarn sisters held a short lesson on putting. Ariya emphasized how important it was to image your putts.
Ariya- “It is important to read your putting lines and the condition of the greens, then imagine on how your ball is going to roll. What I usually do if I have a downhill putt, is that I make a stronger putt while imagining the cup to be closer than the actual cup. That way I do not leave my putts overly short nor too long, and if I putt just like I imagined, it would sink in.”
On stage, Moriya demonstrated two putts, which were both overshot, and Ariya steps in entertaining the crowd by saying
‘’Moriya doesn’t quite have the “imagining” part down yet. She’s better at making som tam (Thai papaya salad) than making putts.”
Golf Competition at the Renowned Alpine Golf Club and a Commemorative Photo with the Jutanugarn Sisters
After the reception, the shotgun start tournament began with the 120 guests.
The Alpine Golf Club is one of the most prestigious golf clubs in Thailand, well-known for the Johnnie Walker Classic held in year 2000 where Tiger Woods won with a record-breaking score of 25 under par. Inside the clubhouse are many displays of his astounding performance. The participants were all excited to be playing were Tiger once played.
During the competition the Jutanugarn sisters went around taking pictures with the participants, which were handed out one by one after their rounds.
It ended with an awards ceremony and an after party that showed promise for the future of Thai-golf.
Born on November 23rd 1995 in Bangkok. In 2007, at 11 years 11 months and 2 days old, she was the youngest player ever to make the cut and qualify for the LPGA tour. After a number of achievements and becoming a U.S. women’s amateur champion, she turned pro in January 2013. She started playing in the LPGA tour in 2015 and won her first tour at the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic in 2016, making her the first Thai winner ever on tour. She went on winning 3 consecutive titles. She then won her first major tournament at the Ricoh Women’s British Open in the same year.
In 2011 she placed 2nd in the U.S. women’s amateur championship. In 2013 she was the Rookie of the Year. She earned her first tour win at the Hugel-JTBC Open and the sisters went on to win the LPGA tour along with sister Ariya Jutanugarn, who is one-year her junior.
GDO Thailand is an online golf course booking site with special offers at popular golf courses, such as the Alpine Golf Club. Come and see for yourself how “Amazing” this country is and have a blast playing golf.