Island News

Ashok follows golf dream

Written By : WAME BAUTOLU. Not many people have achieved success by following their dream icon but this dream is however slowly turning in to a reality for local amateur
30 Aug 2008 12:00

Written By : WAME BAUTOLU. Not many people have achieved success by following their dream icon but this dream is however slowly turning in to a reality for local amateur golfer Ashok Goundar.
Being an amateur golfer, finance administrator and raising a family might be too much for anyone to handle but not for Mr Goundar.
The Finance Administrator at Novotel Hotel said golf for him was the only escape from everyday responsibilities.
Not only did the sport relax him during stressful days, Mr Goundar is a big fan of former world number one golfer Vijay Singh.
Mr Goundar was the overall nett winner of the Colonial Nadi open which was held in Nadi Airport Golf Course on August 23 and 24.
Being the winner was a big bonus for Mr Goundar who plays golf as a hobby but the win has forced him to look at the sport more seriously.
“This is a big achievement for me. I have been following my role model Vijay Singh from so many years and after watching him play the Barclays Tournament, I thought to myself, why not me this time. It’s just a coincidence. I won on Sunday and he too won on Sunday which was Monday (Fiji Time),” said Mr Goundar.
Mr Goundar had the privilege to watch Vijay Singh in 1987 when he came to play a skins tournament in Fiji, just when the world’s former number one golfer started to make his name in the sport.
“I got a chance to meet him when he stayed at the Hotel few years back.”
Mr Goundar who started working for the Hotel as a casual staff which was way back in 1987 and at the time the Hotel was known as Fiji Mocambo Hotel.
He had just left school and he had taken advantage of the first opportunity that was offered to him.
“Back then I use to work for three weeks and then I had to stay at home for two weeks until they call be back . It was like that for three years until someone in the accounting department left and I was immediately told to join the team,” said Mr Goundar.
He started as a junior clerk in 1990 and from that day onwards he has never looked back ever since.
Now he is Finance Administrator in charge of purchasing and cost control of one of the most prestigious Hotel in the country. Being part of a hotel industry is also not easy but the golfer said people in tourism industry are very friendly so it was easy to work and get along with everyone at the hotel.
“Growing up in Nadi, my dream was to become a pilot but that dream for some reasons had being diverted to golf and I had taken whatever opportunity that was there in front of me so that’s why I ended up in the hotel industry,” said Mr Goundar.
Unlike many amateur golfers, Mr Goundar takes the sport seriously and practices whenever he can.
“During my lunch break, I often find at least 20 minutes just to take a few swings before resuming work. Sometimes, I practice after work and you need time to practice to be perfect at this game, like they always say practice makes perfect.”
Many amateur golfers would have a drink or two during golf but for Mr Goundar he focuses on the task ahead and doesn’t practice drinking during a game.
He said drinking can not get a person anywhere especially if they want to achieve something in life.
“They say golf is a rich man’s game but drinking and partying will cost you a whole lot more and I prefer to just play normal golf,” said Mr Goundar.
The other sport he loves to watch is soccer but he admits that golf had the better side of him and he wouldn’t dream of anything else.
Playing golf is a one man’s game and you will need full concentration if you want to achieve greater heights in this sport.
“Unlike for other sports, golf is where you need to make individual effort and don’t have to blame anyone if you don’t perform up to expectation. That’s the beauty of golf but it requires a lot of mentality and patience,” said Mr Goundar.
A lot of thinking is required in this game and the finance administrator believes that one needs to be relaxed if participating in any golf tournament.
“A day before any tournament I usually prefer to spend a quite time at home and my family knows this and they are usually very supportive in giving me peace and quite before I take part in any tournament,” said Mr Goundar.
For anyone who wants to make their mark in golf, the overall nett winner said nothing is impossible and that dreams can be achievable.
“Again practice comes into play and you cannot be perfect at anything unless you practice. You need to have passion and sacrifice to achieve anything and believing in yourself is also important,” said Mr Goundar.
Probably in the next five years, we might see another version of Vijay Singh making it big in the golf arena but this time it will be in the form of Ashok Goundar.

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