NGA fetes SA Games medal winning golfers

Kathmandu, March 6

The Nepal Golf Association felicitated the 13th South Asian Games medal winning golfers along with sponsors, contributors and supporters amidst a programme today.

Nepal had won two each gold and bronze medals in individual and team events of golf in the regional sporting extravaganza held in Kathmandu, Pokhara and Janakpur from December 1-10 last year. The hosts finished second with a record number of 206 medals — 51 gold, 60 silver and 95 bronze — behind regional powerhouse India.

Subash Tamang won the historic gold medal in men’s individual section and 17-year-old golfer teamed up with Sukra Bahadur Rai, Tanka Bahadur Karki and Niraj Tamang to finish first in team event. Rai bagged bronze in men’s individual, while the women’s team of Kashmira Shah, Sushma Koirala and Rabina Shrestha finished third.

President of Nepal Olympic Committee Jeevan Ram Shrestha, Vice-president of National Sports Council Pitamber Timsina, NGA President Tashi Ghale, Youth Development Director Deepak Acharya and Treasurer Kishan Agrawal handed over felicitation letter and Taylormade golf set each to the seven medal winning players.

The NGA also honoured coaches Deepak Thapa Magar and Dhana Bahadur Thapa and team managers Madan Rana and CB Bhandari.

The NGA also handed over appreciation letters and gift hampers to the sponsors and contributors along with Gokarna Forest Resort and Tribhuvan Army Officers’ Golf Club for their relentless support in helping the NGA in its bid to prepare the champion golfers.

NOC President Shrestha lauded NGA’s efforts in providing the nation with historic medals. “We appreciated the efforts of NGA President Ghale and his team for proving us right in including the sport in SA Games,” said Shrestha. “As golf was not included in the list through voting, we had the chance to add two sports from our side as the host nation. And we included golf and karate,” remembered Shrestha. “Ghale and his team had assured us of winning at least one gold medal in golf and we are happy that the sport claimed two,” said Shrestha.

Shrestha also said golf could be one of the sports disciplines to win medal in Olympics. “We are planning to come up with concrete plans and programmes in our bid to win medal in Olympic Games and I can see golf might be one of the sports to bring accolades,” he said. “We need support from the government as we want to break the jinx of participating in the Olympics through wild cards and return empty-handed all the time,” he added.

NSC Vice-president Timsina said the reward programme of the government was put on hold due to COVID-19 outbreak. “The cabinet has already approved the budget for the rewards but we were forced to delay the programme due to the unavoidable circumstances. We are sorry for not being able to do the programme on time but we are committed to reward the athletes,”

Timsina added.

NGA President Tashi Ghale thanked the NOC and NSC for trusting on his team. “We wanted to create the history and we did that on home soil,” said Ghale.

“It would not have been possible without the efforts of the players and support from the NOC, NSC, sponsors and contributors,” he added. Ghale also said the NGA lacked the venue for training. “Gokarna and Army clubs did great help during the SA Games preparation but we cannot be too dependent on them all the time. We need to have at least one course in all seven provinces and NGA is ready to take the lead for that,” he added.