Think Young, Play Hard

Golf has been part of his life and Shar­if­fud­din Arif­fin is en­joy­ing life as a tour­ing pro­fes­sional.

Golf Digest (Malaysia) - - Contents - WITH ROGER RODRIGO

Me­lakan Shar­if­fud­din Arif­fin has big am­bi­tions.

On your start in the game It all started at age of four at Tiara Melaka Golf & Coun­try Club driv­ing range. From there I started lik­ing the game and played in com­pe­ti­tions then. On your pas­sion for the game Age doesn’t mat­ter in this game and I can play a long time. You can also make a lot of friends. It can build up your char­ac­ter as well. I had the chance to prac­tice and play reg­u­larly at Tiara Melaka be­cause my fa­ther is the res­i­dent pro and a mem­ber of the club. On dis­likes I just don’t like rain de­lays be­cause it can take some time be­fore we can re­turn to play the round. I think one of the bad ones was at Da­mai Golf & Coun­try Club in Sarawak where there was a six-hour de­lay. I was play­ing in the evening but had to stop and fin­ish the fi­nal three holes the next day. You can feel a bit slower when you re-start the game. Your con­cen­tra­tion also will be lower. On your most un­for­get­table mo­ment The one I re­mem­ber the most will be the PGM Danau Cham­pi­onship in 2015, when I fin­ished fourth, my high­est plac­ing in the PGM Tour ever. The first two rounds was a strug­gle but I man­aged to re­gain my fo­cus and fin­ished strongly with scores of 68 and 67. My ball strik­ing was good, sank a lot of long putts and my short game was strong. On your low­est score I shot a six-un­der-par 66 in the sec­ond round of the Impian Closed Cham­pi­onship at the Impian Golf & Coun­try Club ear­lier this year. On your favourite club in the bag It would be my 3-wood be­cause it gives me the dis­tance I need and it is very con­sis­tent. My driver is longer but not as con­sis­tent. I use my 3-wood more than the driver be­cause I can stay on the fair­way more. On driv­ing dis­tance 275 me­tres. But, I have driven it 300 me­tres at Tiara Melaka be­fore. On your daily rou­tine On tour­na­ment weeks once I am awake I will do some ex­er­cises, have break­fast be­fore hit­ting some balls to loosen up. That’s fol­lowed by about 20 min­utes of putting and 10 min­utes be­fore my tee time. When there are no tour­na­ments I would be cy­cling or jog­ging in the morn­ing, or go­ing to the range to hit shots. I will golf three times a week and prac­tice ev­ery day. My prac­tice rou­tine de­pends of how my game is do­ing. If I am hav­ing prob­lems with driv­ing then I will work on that. The same ap­plies with my iron shots or the short game.

This year my main prob­lem has been with the driver keep­ing the ball on the fair­way. I am ad­just­ing to a new driver and es­pe­cially the shaft, as some­times when I want to hit a draw it doesn’t work. It’s the same with want­ing to hit a fade. So for now I will use my 3-wood off the tee. On your favourite golf course (s) It will have to be Tiara Melaka, my home course as I know the holes well. It is quite a chal­leng­ing lay­out es­pe­cially on some drives with wellplaced bunkers. I can play quite con­fi­dently there es­pe­cially on the par-5s where I can reach in two shots. I think only Danny Chia can do this on the Wood­land course where the par5s are long. I also like the fact that I can at­tack the pin at Tiara be­cause the greens bite and hold the ball. The other course I like is TPC Kuala Lumpur. It looks very nice, the con­di­tion is good and is also chal­leng­ing. It has some slop­ing greens which in a way re­minds me of Tiara Melaka. Here you can­not at­tack as eas­ily on some holes as the ball can run off the green. I think at TPC the most im­por­tant point is course man­age­ment where you hit the ball. If you land in the rough your chances for a good score on that hole is very low. On your coach Since I was young and un­til to­day it has been my fa­ther Arif­fin Omar. Be­cause he’s a pro him­self and has played in the TDC Tour be­fore, he knows the in­side out of tour­na­ment golf. His ad­vice and ob­ser­va­tion is very good for me. My fa­ther fol­lows me round by round in most tour­na­ments and while he is look­ing at my game he is also ob­serv­ing my tem­per­a­ment. He is very con­cerned about dis­ci­pline, eti­quette and con­duct. He says I must carry my­self as a pro­fes­sional does, hold my head up, and look and greet peo­ple. He teaches me to use a range finder on the range how to strengthen club selec­tion and de­velop my course man­age­ment. On holes where there are fair­way bunkers I am taught that it is bet­ter to use a 3-wood as most greens are reach­able with an iron. On your school/col­lege and golf When I was study­ing in SMK Sri Gad­ing I nor­mally fin­ish school at 3pm, then I will head to range to prac­tice and in the night I will at­tend to my school­work. On your hob­bies The only one now is fut­sal which I play like once a month. I used to play more when I was younger but stopped reg­u­lar play at Form One as I was con­cen­trat­ing on play­ing golf. On hang­ing out Some­times I will ac­com­pany my sis­ter to go shop­ping and meet old friends. On your favourite food Chicken chop and poached eggs. What would you like to be if you are not a golfer I think I would be a po­lice­man or a soldier.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.