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Singh's participation excites Fiji golf

Arin Kumar
Saturday, March 01, 2014

FIJI Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee (FASANOC) president Reg Sanday is excited at the news of Vijay Singh's participation in the Fiji International golf tournament.

It was revealed on Thursday the former world number one would compete in the multi-million dollar tournament at the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course from August 14 to 17.

Sanday said the news was great and Fiji could capitalise on Singh's return to the country.

He said the National Golf Association of Fiji (NGAF) could ask Singh if he would be interested in representing Fiji at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil.

"The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has professionalised a number of sports including basketball, tennis, athletics, rugby sevens and also golf," Sanday said.

"It means that professional sportsmen and women, like Tiger Woods and Vijay Singh, are able to represent their countries at the Olympics.

Sanday said he had already asked the golf association to ask Singh of the possibility if they met him at the tournament in August.

"This will certainly put Fiji in serious contention for a medal in golf.

"At the same time, Vijay's decision to wear Fiji colours at the Rio Olympics will certainly attract a lot of media attention, not only to him but also to Fiji — this can only be of great benefit to our country."

Sanday said a medal at the Olympics would be one of the Big Fijian's highest honours.

"Part of the reason for Vijay coming to the Fiji International is his desire to give back something to the sport in his country of birth.

"Singh was born in Lautoka but grew up in Nadi and his possible participation, thus the possibility of winning a medal for Fiji at the 2016 Rio Olympics, could be his crowning glory for a wonderful career spanning three decades.

"My FASANOC team and I will be on standby to provide any advice and support that NGAF may need within our means for Vijay to agree to be part of Team Fiji at the Rio Olympics in 2016."

Meanwhile, Sanday said the Fiji International, which is jointly-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia and OneAsia, would be good motivation for the youths of Fiji.

"It will be a fantastic encouragement to the sport and hopefully help to attract more youngsters to take up golf."

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