‘We Want To Make Golf Accessible To Everybody’
Saturday, 04 February 2012 00:00 By Olalekan Okusan

FOR the Managing Director, Golfteq Systems Limited, Babatunde Tobun, making golf, a sport for all was the reason why he decided to bring the golf simulator to Nigeria.

Tobun, an account based in United Kingdom (UK), felt that it is possible for Nigerians to be among the best golfers in the world, but said this would only be possible if children are introduce early into the game.

He said: “In Nigeria, not everybody cannot have access to a golf course. (If) you want to learn the game the golf simulator is the right tool to use as it generates lots of interest as well. Right now in Nigeria, people still see golf as an elite sport that too expensive to afford. But the golf simulator has opened up the sport and changed the way people perceived golf in this country. Golf started as an elite sport but has now been opened up for people to participate in it.”

He added: “I believe we will get there but it will just take time and we need time to get to that stage where everybody will have access to the sport. The simulator is an avenue to make golf an open sport for everybody and change our perception and get more people playing the game.

“We don’t have Nigerians playing in most of the top championships in the world because we still see it as a closed game. We need to make it open for people to come and enjoy it. It is a game that does not require much energy and you cannot break your leg like in football.”

For the simulator, Tobun said the machine would be affordable for anybody to practice and play, while there is plans to take it round the country.

His words: “But with the golf simulator, it has open up the sport and change the way people perceive golf in this country. For anybody hoping to use the machine, it is cheap especially when such people come as a group. Also, we are planning to have ladies and children playing because people like Tiger Woods started when they were young. So we want to encourage the children to start the game early. We will assign days for kids, and they can come in and practice because the earlier they start the better. Starting early will help the kids to be good in the sport,” he said.

Continuing he said: “We are planning to take it across the country, but for Lagos, we are planning to build a proper academy where we can have about five golf simulators for playing and coaching. It is also part of our plans to introduce the equipment to the market. The Hotel Boyage in Victoria Island is at present the only place the equipment is sited but in the future we plan to expand to other places within the year. We mounted the machine few weeks ago and we are trying to create awareness about it.”

Tobun explained that he wanted to contribute his quota to the development of the sport with the introduction of the simulator to the country. “I want to change the perception that golf is a close game for the elite. It is not and for me it is a personal ambition to do something in Nigeria and give something to the country and also to promote the sport,” he said.

For those interested in practicing and playing golf at home, the indoor golf simulator allows golfers to use golf clubs (from drivers to putters) and play a complete round of golf as well as practice working on the swing in the comfort of home or office.

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