Around the HKGA
The new President of HKGA shares his vision with Louie Chan for the next 12 months.
Yoshihiro Nishi, the new President of Hong Kong Golf Association, shares his vision for the next 12 months.
Louie Chan: Congratulation Nishi-san for being elected as the new president of HKGA!
Yoshihiro Nishi: It’s certainly an honour to be the President of the organisation with a long history since 1968, and has such a high reputation and tradition among international golf community.
I have been an international committee member of Japan Golf Association since 2011 and people in the golf community speak highly of HKGA - the quality of the tournament and activity they run over the years. I came to HK in 2010, and I never expected to become the President of HKGA. My destiny has brought me here. I am very proud and very excited about this assignment.
LC: You have been the VP of HKGA in the past 12 months. What do you think was the greatest achievement of HK Golf?
YN: The achievement along with the past Presidents Mark Chan and Harald Dudok van Heel was HKGA’s effort in developing golf in HK from grassroots, and we are on the right track.
My role now is to make sure that what we began two years ago will continue into the future. As the new President, I will work hard to keep good attention to develop the junior program and passing on the torch into the future.
LC: Instead of passing on the torch, will you bring up new ideas to the association?
YN: In the next 12 months, I would like to reach out more to the local community. 2018 will be the 50th anniversary of HKGA, and I would like to celebrate this event together with all golfers in HK. HKGA must reach out to our over 9,000 registered handicap members and listen to their voice and communicate more. I also would like to take a more leadership role for all golf industry to be sustainable in the future.
It is also time to think out of the box. I support the idea of developing indoor golf handicap system which was proposed by Danny Lai, our CEO and we have already begun discussing this matter with USGA.
We have to be very flexible in looking into the future of golf while maintaining the tradition. I would like to see HK to be the first place to issue certified golf Handicap to indoor golfers among international golf associations. LC: You knew Hideki Matsuyama, our cover star when he’s still an amateur. What’s your impression of him? I had known Hideki since 2011 when I made a trip to Singapore to attend APGC Championship held at Singapore Island Country Club. He won the championship that year and made the door open for him to participate in the Masters tournament, and I helped Hideki as a translator for his media interview.
I felt that by the age of 19, Hideki already saw himself would play in the bigger field in the future. I saw him at the gym in the hotel 5:30am before his 9am practice round, and he was the only one training. I then saw him spend more than 2 hours on the putting green after the round until it got dark. He went on winning the tournament, and I saw him again at the gym on Monday morning. For Hideki, with strong determination, winning seemed just a process to reach the higher goal and I am not surprised by his success now on the PGA TOUR. I certainly hope to see him become the next Asian Major winner sooner or later.