Korean junior golfers invited come to Okinawa

Korean junior golfers invited come to Okinawa

Press conference at Lotte Hotel Seoul regarding the Korea-Okinawa Friendship Junior Golf Camp in Okinawa.

December 21, 2011 Ryukyu Shimpo

On December 15, a presentation on the Korea-Okinawa Friendship Junior Golf Camp in Okinawa, which was selected by the Okinawa-ken Government from among submissions from the public as a project for sport tourism, was held at a hotel in Seoul. It is hoped that through this camp, people will understand that Okinawa is warm even in winter and is well suited to golf-camps, and also that the level of junior players will improve through such exchanges.

The camp is a 2011 Sports Tourism Strategic Promotion project aiming to attract tourists to Okinawa through sport and it is organized by the Okinawa-ken Golf Association and the Ryukyu Shimpo.

Yoshio Higa, the head of the Okinawa-ken Golf Association, golf teaching professional Masaru Miyazato, who is an adviser for the camp and Satoshi Ikema, director of the project division of the Ryukyu Shimpo attended at the presentation meeting. They talked about Okinawa from the point of view of the camp, the circumstances for golf in the prefecture, and the weather conditions in winter. A total of 36 companies involved in newspapers or magazines covering travel, tourism and the golf industry participated.

Higa explained that they have been concentrating on the development of junior golfers saying, “I hope that the young people and children of Okinawa will improve their skills through exchange with their Korean counterparts.”

Talking about his experience raising his daughter, professional golfer Ai Miyazato, Masaru Miyazato said, “Experience of competitions in the international arena builds mental toughness. I firmly believe that the camp will very beneficial for the youth of Okinawa and Korea.”

There were questions from the floor regarding the importance of allocating prefectural budget for the camp and some advice was forthcoming on how to run the camp smoothly.

By December 16, Higa and others had visited the Korea Elementary School Golf Association, the Korea Junior and Senior High School Golf Association, and explained the reasoning behind the camp then requested that Korea consider sending players. Both Associations adopted a positive stance on these suggestions.

(English translation by T&CT, Lima Tokumori and Mark Ealey)

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