By Jugjet Singh
ARETHA Pan (with trophy), 16, and Diana Tham, 18, are in for the ride of their lives after emerging tops in the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysian Amateur tournament to grab two tickets for this weekends action.
Both the girls are from Sabah, and barely stand above their putters but there is a fresh look of eagerness and anticipation written on their faces.
There are five Malaysians who will be carrying the national flag at the inaugural tournament at the KLGCC. The others are amateur Kelly Tan, and professionals Cindy Lee-Pridgen and Jean Chua.
"I am delighted to play alongside the best lady golfers in the world and I do not feel under pressure at all because there is no half-way cut in this tournament, which means I can learn from the others while enjoying my round," said Aretha.
Aretha and Diana are products of Sime Darby Foundation in collaboration with KLGCC.
Tan Sri Dr M. Jegathesan, member of the Governing Council of Yayasan Sime Darby said: "Through sponsoring high profile tournaments like the LPGA, Sime Darby Foundation and KLGCC's main objective lies in promoting and inspiring talented young sportsmen and women to realise their true potential.
"This programme trained and developed some promising female golfers with a handicap of two and below and the end produce in the qualification of Aretha and Diana."
Diana finished first in the national qualifier with an aggregate total of seven-over 149.
Diana, who recently won the 27th Malaysian Ladies Amateur Open Championship said: “II would like to thank the event organisers, the sponsors and all the coaches of the Sime Darby LPGA Development Program for helping with my game and for helping me achievement such a milestone.”
While the Malaysians are not expected to be at the top of the podium, but it is an experience they will forever cherish and hopefully take their game to a higher level.