And the stupidest pest company goes to: RENTOKIL

Here’s a formal review I wrote to bloody Rentokil

Been a customer for more than 3 years. Every year they will miss out their scheduled visits. In 2016 they missed 2 out of 6 (generally, they will call you and say, hey can i come today, as in we assume that you are a jobless nutjob sitting around the house waiting for rentokil to call everyday) – so they agreed to move 2 extra ones this year. They did one and still need to provide one more service. Unfortunately, instead of doing that service, they gave an invoice for renewal for 2017. When called, they say, we can provide a credit note (to offset and discount due to missed service last year) – I said, no, I don’t want you guys anymore, just come and do your last service. And suddenly, the lady said, “Oh, according to our records, we don’t owe you any service anymore”.

Rentokil – i know house customers are treated by you as badly as how you treat rats and cockroaches, but remember before you guys were big and doing factories and companies, home owners were the ones you started off with. The arrogance of this company is just too extreme. Enough said, no more Rentokil for my homes. I rather deal with the cockroaches with my Ridsect than to give them anymore business.

Anyone thinking of getting these bunch of idiots better think twice. Worst pest control company by a million miles. I imagine cockroaches and rats doing hi-fives with each other when they see home owner signing up with them.

And really – it’s so sad. At this time and age, when economy is doing so poorly, you would think companies now should give a shit about customer experience. Yet, they are so batshit arrogant that they don’t give a flying fuzzball about customers. Rentokil – I hope you get killed as a company one day.

Gilanalysis 19: Monterez


Gross: 96

Net: 76

Verdict: So much for easier courses…..

What Happened

So I took my own advice and played on an apparently easier course than KGPA, the famously narrow Monterez. I thought, how bad can it be, if I can keep on the fairway with my 3 wood, I should be able to blitz this course easy.

By the end of the game, my score has inflated to a desponding 96. Desponding not because of the way I got that 96, but that the entire game was just an accumulation of severe brain farts that would otherwise be a very good golf round. Here is the breakdown: Teeing up back nine.

10: Good drive, but brain fart #1, hit my hybrid too far left so as not to flirt with OB on the right. Forgot there was water there. Splash. Still could 4 on, brain fart #2, dug my 9 iron too deep and steep. 5 on, two putted.

11: great drive, with just 70m. Dug my 60 degree too deep and steep. BF#3.

12: Regulation on, three putted. BF#4.

14: Regulation on from bunker, again 3 putted. BF#5.

17: Good drive, but again slapped my 9 iron behind the bunker. BF#6, easy chip and I duffed it into the bunker. Triple freaking bogey off an easy shot. AUGH!

1: First time my 3-wood sliced…and it has to go into the water. Not a brain fart but what are the chances, really.

2: The worst BF#7. Best drive, with just 70 meters. AGAIN. 60 degree too steep, too deep just like BF#3. Stupid.

8: BF#8. Good drive, but completely misjudged distance and flew my 6 iron over. Miracle chip, but 3 putted from 10 feet.

9: BF#9. First time my 3-wood hooked, and it has to be the WORST possible hole, OB left. From there, my second shot landed perfectly behind a tree, as in inches from the tree trunk. No way.

Why I Sucked

9 Brain Farts. My strategy initially worked, use 3 wood exclusively, keep it on the fairway but for sakes, my irons, especially the money irons were simply TOO STEEP, TOO DEEP…kept chunking the darn ball over and over and over. So driving wasn’t so bad, except for hole 1 and 9, but man, short irons were awful.

Not So Sucked

I am beginning to like my 3 wood a lot. Most times the ball flew straight and far, about 10m or so only behind the driver. More importantly it kept to the fairway. Putter was off on today, but was using an experimental No compromise putter instead of my Taylormade or Odyssey.

What to Work On

Easy. Short irons. Starting from 60 degree, SW, PW and 9 iron. Off the ground, not the stupid mat on the range. Because approach is simply too steep. 96 on Monterez is absolutely bonkers.

Gilanalysis 15: Staffield West and South


Gross: 95

Net: 75

Verdict: I don’t understand why my clubs don’t come to work together?

What Happened + Mini Review

Staffield has always been a course that pretty consistently gives us high marks. Surprisingly, this is the first time I ever got a chance to review the West course. So aside from a gilanalysis, this is going to be a mini review of Staffield West. So away we go!

Some courses are easy on the eyes, the same way some women are, or some cars are: they don’t overwhelm you with massive good looks and just welcomes you home like a best friend, neither do they resemble a discarded banana skin on their best day. Case in point:

Something homely like Ginnifer:

vs something not so homely:

You don’t ever wanna get caught in a course that resembles the second one….take that, Bukit Beruntung, Frasers and Selesa Hills!

Staffield is Ginnifer Goodwin, welcoming, relaxed, homely…like a guy’s best girl friend whom you won’t fall in love with, but whom you like to hang around and talk crap to and crack stupid jokes with. Ah, good old college days.

I digress. Once you are on the first tee on the homely, inviting, best friend Ginnifer West course, you’ll be watched by no less than 20 people (as the tee off for the North course is NEXT to you), but looking at the HUGE fairway on the opening par 5 will make you feel a whole lot better…and we did, with each of us stripping down the fairway and strutting to our buggies like we were pros. Obviously, we all descended into the duffing, topping and whiffing hackers we all are in reality after that. But hey, first tee jitters: BEGONE!

The second hole is an inviting straight par 4, which after a good drive, I was set up with an 8 that I proceeded to duff. 3 on, 3 putted and back to life, back to reality of Golf Hacking.

The par 4 third is a really very picturesque hole, with water on the left of the green, and a grand view over the next hole, which has an intimidating tee shot for hookers. Thankfully I have seemed to graduate from a hooker on my misses to a slicer…which might seem like a strange progress, but it’s true what they say, you can talk to a fade but not to a draw, meaning, slice misses seems a little better for me in keeping the ball in play. I mean, have you ever duck hooked before? It doesn’t stand a chance, it just goes 50 meters or so and skitters into a drink or kills someone in the next flight. A banana slice miss at least goes further and higher, and at least you can align yourself for that miss. It probably makes no sense, but nothing much in my golf game makes sense.

At this point, after starting with a par, I have proceeded to make a mess of my irons and my putts to double bogey 3 holes, before sorting out with a bogey on the par 5 5th, a narrow tee shot that opens up considerably after that. It’s surrounded with forest so, as usual, keep the dang ball on the fairway and you’ll manage this.

The par 3 8th (like the one on southern) is probably the best looking hole for us. It’s a short par 3 at 130 meters, with water on the left, and an elevated tee shot. I didn’t take a picture because a phone call came, but trust me, it’s still an intimidating 130 meters to the green.

The last hole, like Southerm requires you to blast past the water to the dogleg right, elevated green, which makes it awesomely hard to reach in two. But it passed what we call ‘Last Hole Test’, which is to make sure the final hole doesn’t resemble the underside of a toilet seat (such as Harvard’s final hole), so people leave with good impression. Staffield West is a must play.

Why I Sucked

Putts. It doesn’t look like I had too many 3 putts, but I made a lot of good chips that stopped within 3-5 feet of the hole. I missed, I think 3 3 footers, and 2 more within 4-5 feet. Putts I should be making in my sleep just didn’t fall.Plus the greens were devilish. Not bad, but difficult, for some reason. The speed was quick on the first few holes, and then it slowed down considerably, causing us to putt like lizards on cocaine.

IRONS. Especially my stupid pitching wedge, 9 iron and 8 iron. These are scoring irons, the bread and butter of golfers. And I managed to play HORRENDOUS with them. Two GIRs means CRAP irons. While my driver was working overtime, my iron days was best summed up on the easy hole 14. I had about 110 meters left to the green. An easy pitching wedge in hand and I completely whiffed it into bunker. 15th, same, easy fairway 9 iron big pull to the left and a duff chip caused my double bogey. And hole 16, an easy pitching wedge again push right. I don’t get it…this never happens on the range, where I can hit 6/10 times the driving range green and come here to play like a Phillipino Tarsier being jabbed with morphine.

Not So Sucked

If there was a positive, driver would be it. I drove very well overall, except for a few bad ones here and there, but still managed to escape those due to the generosity and welcoming nature of Ginnifer Staffield. My driver distance has been shortened due to my insistence on playing for a fade instead of draw, so that my misses are slices instead of hooks (read above for a full dissertation of this amazing strategy), but I’m getting it more in play, and I am SURE sooner or later, when my putting, driver, irons and short game come together, I will be able to pull of a 39 on a 9 hole like I did in Harvard. Some day.

What to Work On

I am almost this close to giving up practicing on the range, and save up my money to buy an iphone or something. It’s quite useless to play so well on range and hack around like a grave digger when it actually matters. I was fortunate to be playing on a Ginnifer course today….if I brought this game to a discarded banana skin course like Bukit Beruntung, I would have shot like 10 strokes worse.

Kulim GCR


Kedah is one of the northernmost part of Malaysia, almost to the Thai border, and home to a few golf courses that we always wanted to play but couldn’t find the time to do it. So some gilagolfers found themselves up north and had a choice to play Cinta Sayang or Kulim. I don’t know who the heck made the decision, but at the end, we all found ourselves headed to Kulim because it was closer to Penang, where we were staying.

IMG_1296.jpg picture by gilagolf

Travel ( 3/5)

To reiterate, this category of travel is fast becoming irrelevant. With the advent of google maps, you can get almost anywhere these days without depending on sh*tty maps that the golf courses provide. Seriously, here’s the map provided by Kulim.


What? This is as bad as Staffield’s map. I mean seriously, how many monkeys does it take to draw something like this? On the website, here are the actual directions:

“it is easily accessible via the 4-lane dual carriage Butterworth-Kulim Expressway which forms a part of the East-West Highway. This highway links Kulim Hi-Tech Park directly with the North-South Highway at the Seberang Jaya Intechange, Penang International Airport, the North Butterworth Container Terminal and the Penang Port.”

Umm. OK. Which part of directions to golf course is the writer missing here? He’s talking about the highway, for sakes! It just shows how tepid Malaysian golf course website writers, very much like our police force. Providing heaps of useless information, but never the relevant ones. OK, gilagolf directions:



There, simple. If you still can’t get it, I’ll assume you need it in Braille format. I don’t think you should be driving anyway.

IMG_1272.jpg picture by gilagolf

Price (3 /5)

We also selected Kulim because it was ridiculously cheap. With the weekday and with the top premier vouchers, we paid only RM30 per person, with buggy. RM30! That’s like dinner for me and my wife daily! Of course before you get too carried away, there’s probably a reason why this course is so cheap; aside from the fact that it’s pretty deep in. We’ll explore it later, but at RM30, it could be as bad as cowdung and we might still be able to forgive it.

IMG_1281.jpg picture by gilagolf

First thoughts

Kulim, at the first tee kinda reminded me of UPM, which makes sense. It looks like a jungle course, without any of the open spaces we had experienced in Bukit Jawi a  day earlier. Like UPM, with my cranky drive, my best bet would be to keep it in the fairway and keep it safe. Unfortunately, rain was pelting down as soon as we teed off, and we knew we were all going to be in for a long day.

IMG_1251.jpg picture by gilagolf

Service (2 /5)

Not much experience with the service, except the lady at the counter took an exceptionally long time to register us. There was about 3 flights over all, to be fair to her, and after that debacle at Bukit Jawi (where halfway through our case, the woman declared she had to eat lunch and left), Kulim was at least good enough to get us onto our buggies and into the course before we started to grow a beard each…including the ladies.

And….NO CADDY!! YEAAY! I like courses without caddies to bother you and think of how much to tip them.

IMG_1278.jpg picture by gilagolf

Fairways (3 /5)

With the downpour, fairways were soggy. To be fair to Kulim, it fared a little better than say, KRTU when it rained. At least we had minimum embedded balls, and more importantly, no casual water. In fact, the drainage was very good.

Don’t expect too many broad fairways in Kulim. It plays a little tight, especially the north course, so it might be wise to hone up your three-wood off the tee.

IMG_1255.jpg picture by gilagolf

Greens ( 1/5)

While the fairways survived the pelting rain, the greens did not fare very well. Due to poor maintenance, the greens were inconsistent. Some were sanded, some had grass as long as the fairway, and some both. I guess maintenance is pretty expensive, and judging by the amount of traffic we saw there, I don’t think there were too many people playing this course. Then again, I bet at 5, those managers from the surrounding factories in Kulim Hi-tech park will pour out into the course and hack it up.

IMG_1259.jpg picture by gilagolf

Rough (1 /5)

You can always tell by the bunkers and boy the bunkers are really not so great in Kulim. Aside from the rocks threatening to scratch and split your clubs, it was just hard packed dirt. In fact, there was once I actually putted out of the bunker onto the green! True it was raining, but there was also overgrown grass at the side, so hitting a couple into it, it was a hard search for the balls.

IMG_1269.jpg picture by gilagolf

Aesthetics (2 /5)

Surprisingly, Kulim actually looks nice. We caught it on a gloomy day for sure, so I’m thinking if there was sun, and we had some shadows, it would definitely be worth a shot. Elevation helps. Like Jawi, some drops were pretty extreme.

The first tee will require a precise cut into the middle, before it opens up to the green. I smashed my first shot so far right, I think I killed a kelapa sawit worker. The par 3 3rd in the North course is a hooker’s nightmare, with water on the left, but reminded me very much of the second hole in Bangi. Perhaps the most picturesque hole on the course is the par 3 7th on the North course. It’s an intrepid 185 meters from the elevated tee to the semi island green. It’s definitely not something we want to try with the rain pelting down.  But amazingly, everyone got on the green from my flight. Behind our flight, the 4 guys all crashed and burned in the water.

IMG_1267.jpg picture by gilagolf

From there, the course sorts of meander on with pretty much the same scenary, till we reach the 18th hole on the east course, again a textbook par 4 reminiscent of the par 4 hole in Bangi where we try to smash one –on from an elevated tee. I think it’s a great ending hole, so kudos to Kulim…you have passed the Gilagolf aesthetic test! Now we certify that your course does not look like a piece of dung.

IMG_1286.jpg picture by gilagolf

Fun Factor ( 2/5)

Fun? It was hard to have fun in a british open weather like the one that caught us. It might have been a great round, otherwise, so we’ll just leave it at 2. The par 3 was really an eye opener, but aside from that and aside from the ending hole, there wasn’t much wow in Kulim. It’s sort of a mixture of UPM, Bangi  and Kundang kind of lay out.

IMG_1263.jpg picture by gilagolf


This review does sound a little languid. Kulim is one of those courses that’s neither here nor there. You can’t really get too angry with a club that’s willing to let you play for 30RM and not have a crowd. So in that sense, Kulim was an easy, relaxing experience. As for it being premium and having a wow factor, it doesn’t. It’s there, it’s just like one of the peripheral characters in a movie that you don’t really notice or care for. It’s Lando Clarisan to Han Solo, it’s Sallah to Indiana Jones, it’s that tribal leader’s best friend in Avatar, I don’t even know his name. Darn, he sure is obscure.


The good: Price is cheaper than most of your haircuts; travel isn’t too difficult; surprisingly reasonable fairway and interesting aesthetics; good par 3 7th and a good ending hole to take home.

The bad: Greens are not well kept; rough is also unkept, and bunkers not well maintained; pretty much ordianary layout, reminiscent to Kundang and Bangi; why did we travel to Kedah again?

The skinny: 17 of 40 divots (42.5%). We do recommend Kulim, if you are in the area and you’re a little tight on moolahs or have spent it all in Penang makan. It offers a reasonable experience of golf, nothing more.

IMG_1257.jpg picture by gilagolf

Kulim GRC Information

Address:Pesiaran Kulim Golf,
Kulim Golf & Country Resort,
Kulim Hi-Tech Park, 09000
Kulim, Kedah Darul Aman,

Contact: +604-4032828

Fax: +604-4032888



Glenmarie GCC – Valley


Glenmarie. We never thought Gilagolf would ever step into the sacred grounds of the top 3 golf courses around the Subang/Shah Alam territory: KGNS, KGSAAS and Glenmarie. But we were finally able to weasel our way into all of them, and here’s a good look at Glenmarie Golf Club, and two of her fabled 18: The Valley and The Gardens.

We’ll take a look at the more famed one, The Valley.

IMG00378-20100716-0915.jpg picture by gilagolf

Travel (4/5)

Travel is a snap. As with all courses around this area, you wouldn’t get lost even if you had 10 shots of JDs and someone pumped you full of valium. The only problem here is the jam. Subang area is notorious for jams. I mean, have you ever tried accessing subang via Federal Highway in peak hours? It’s ridiculous. You can finish watching Avatar and still not reach home. I don’t know how the Subang fellas do it. Having been through a few of it myself, I am already seeking therapy for suicidal tendencies.

Anyways, for Glenmarie, thankfully, you can access via the NKVE. Turnoff at Subang and head straight, keeping right. What you need to do is to make a U-turn right at the bottom of the road and come back up the other side.  Keep left and turn the first turning to the left. Then follow the road signs to lead you to Holiday Inn/Glenmarie Golf. You won’t miss it. Turn right at the traffic light and go all the way in, pass the hotel and you’ll arrive at Glenmarie Golf Club.

IMG00379-20100716-0930.jpg picture by gilagolf

Price ( 1/5)

The price is always a giveaway for what is to come. If we pay through our nostrils, the experience better be darn good. If you’re going to charge premium, hey, play premium, and don’t play a course that turns out to be like any other course.

And for Glenmarie – Valley, here’s the cruncher: RM181 for weekday for special discount rate. Because we were organizing a tournament there, my company was given that discount to play a practice round. OK. So what the he** is the discount here? What’s the normal pricing, if already we’re down RM181??

And later on, we’ll explore, is this worth it? For now, let’s just say, I rather spend that RM181 on taking my dog for his rabies injection and buying really expensive Danish Dog Cookies for him.

IMG00380-20100716-0937.jpg picture by gilagolf

First thoughts

Glenmarie, you have to give them, has a pretty impressive clubhouse. Everything looks very professional, very well done, well organized. They have their trademark blue roof club house, a huge drive way, and the car park nearby.

Of the two 18s in Glenmarie, the Valley is generally considered the more difficult one, and considered the ‘championship’ material. I don’t know who put that in the brochure, but that’s the generally accepted theme. The course gives what Jawi gave, a general feeling of expanses, which to its credit, Glenmarie exploits very well, in terms of hole design and general aesthetics. It’s not to say we like it, but these are first thoughts anyway. Until….

IMG00396-20100716-1259.jpg picture by gilagolf

Service (-1/5)

It’s official. Glenmarie Service SUCKS. You’d think a hotel-resort course would have top class people handling their service, but here it is:

1)      Dumping us into a different course

Having already booked and CONFIRMED an 8 am flight in Gardens, we were unceremoniously dumped into the Valley course by the reception, because there is a monthly tournament going on in the Garden. Ok, thanks. Now why on Jack Sparrow’s beard did you agree that we could use the Garden on that day, and confirmed it the day before??? Why would I want to practice on the Valley when our tournament is in the Gardens? The reception said, yeah, the Garden is easier but Valley is more challenging. My response to him was, yes, and we all look like sadistic idiots bent on abusing our own self esteem by seeking tougher golf challenges. Bring it on!As it is, we can’t even hit the darn ball straight! The point is, we booked Gardens, we play Gardens! And stop trying to convince us otherwise! It’s like we booked a flight to the Bahamas and they send us to the Amazon instead, saying it’s more challenging. The point is, we are packed for Bahamas, not bloody Amazon.


2)      No credit card machine

Ok, only for that day.  They did not accept credit cards, so they insisted on cash. Um, yeah, I carry wads of cash around me all the time, right? Wrong. They claimed the credit card machine was kaput. Do you know how inconvenient it is to get flight members to pitch in and pay in cash? Don’t they know that golfers only carry limited cash with them, so when they lose a bet, they can say, “Aiyo, no money lah”. So I had to pool money from the group, and two of them being customers. Thanks, Glenmarie, for embarrassing me in front of my customers. The least you could do, was to give some more discounts. Because of the broken machine, there was a long wait as well.

3)      Stupid Caddies

We absolutely, vehemently detest caddies that are forced on us (like in Jawi) and doesn’t even know what the green speed is. We got two of the dumbest caddies in the world. One was so grumpy that I was half afraid she would revert back to her cannibal instincts and bite off our ears for losing so many balls. One even had the gall to scold us, when we plopped an extra ball in one of the holes to practice pitching. Nobody was behind us then, so we weren’t holding up. Sure, she might have a point. Sure, it might be illegal. But, um, you are a caddy. Shut the heck up.

If I wanted someone to admonish me, I can get my mom to do it, not some strange looking person dressed in multi colored clown suit, whose primary job is to point out yardage, green details and hang on at the back of our buggies for dear life. One of them refused to take my putter for me when I putted out, instead, insisting the other caddy do it. And they even passed us wrong clubs in several instances, and give wrong breaks on greens. In fact I’m so pissed with them now, I’m reducing service to -1. This is the pinnacle of humiliation, for a so-called top rated golf club to have a -1 service, which is equivalent to the experience of having living cockroaches stuffed into your lunch sandwich.

Glenmarie Golf….your service and your caddies suck. Please improve or stop charging and pretending you are a good golf club.

Because of point 1), I didn’t bring my normal GilaCam, and had to take pictures using my Blackberry. This is because I’ve already taken pictures in the Gardens, and since we were supposed to play in the Gardens to today, I didn’t see the point of it. I didn’t expect the extreme stupidity of Glenmarie to send us to the Amazon when we booked for the Bahamas.

IMG00375-20100716-0834.jpg picture by gilagolf

Fairways (2 /5)

So after struggling through the reception, we finally trudged onto the first tee of the valley and…was pleasantly surprise. It was a very inviting tee shot, but I promptly pushed one way right. The first experience with the useless caddy was here, where they didn’t mention there was OB on the right, thinking that we wouldn’t be hitting there. Um, welcome to my world, where balls will fly to where they are not supposed to. I managed to recover for a double, but it set the tone for the day.

The fairways, surprisingly, was not as good as the Gardens. It might be due to the downpour the day before, but there was a general lack of maintenance, as was witnessed by bare or sandy patches, along with tyre marks of probably grass cutters and so on. But the grass was just not compact together, like the ones in Tropicana or Jawi. Glenmarie needs to understand: if you are going to charge an arm and leg for your green fees, your fairways better feel better than my Kingkoil bed. Because if it’s anything short, you are going to get relegated into the dreaded Waste of Time and Money Category. What a douchebag of a course.

IMG00384-20100716-0958.jpg picture by gilagolf

Greens ( 3/5)

The greens are slightly better, but again, compared to the Gardens, it’s strangely sandier and less consistent. I don’t know why. I thought The Valley is supposed to be the better course, but it’s turning into some kind of nonsensical journey for Gilagolf, because the course is playing more like Kinrara, pretending to be a Tropicana. Most of the greens was a little sandy, some fast, some slower and there was just a nightmare figuring out the speed. The contours of the greens were also very challenging, which is why we are bumping it up to 3 (we like sadistic greens, for some reason), and large, so a regulation on might actually result in a three-putt, or in one case, a four-putt and a scream of anguish.

IMG00392-20100716-1152.jpg picture by gilagolf

Rough ( 3/5)

Take it here from Gilagolf. You will spend most of your waking hour in The Valley in the bunker. There are a total of 1,156 bunkers on the green (this is not verified, we just need an independent auditor to go and count it). The entire course is literally littered with bunkers. I think I’ve hit more than 10 bunkers (fairway and greenside) on my way to an explosive score of 101. This would make an interesting challenge, except the bunkers behave differently. Some are hard packed, some are not so. Some sand is wet, others dry on top, wet under. And so on. And it’s not like we’re even good at getting out of bunkers. We suck at it. And yes, it’s Glenmarie’s fault that we play like drunk gerbils high on methanol.

IMG00397-20100716-1310.jpg picture by gilagolf

The normal rough is ok, there’s no penalty like Saujana rough, and in this sense, we are reminded that Glenmarie is a resort course, like Bangi, only 3x more expensive.

Aesthetics (3/5)

Due to the contours of the Valley, you will see a lot of blind holes. One, this means, the caddy comes in play. And with the completely useless twits we had for caddies, we were in for a long day. More than one hole, they were completely lost, and we had to search for the balls on our own…and found them too. So on the tee box, you see…just the fairway and that’s it. It opens up from the fairway to greens along the rolling terrain, so in some instances, like the 18th, it does gives quite a magnificent snapshot of the course, and why it’s called the Valley. Instead, if you look at it, you might think you were playing in Seremban 3 course, the course we have banished into the darkness of Gilagolf course infamy. Is the Valley pretty? It’s ok. It’s not spectacular, but it does gives some interesting vistas of the course. But everything is with a pricetag. I wouldn’t pay RM30 for a nasi lemak that tastes like a RM5 nasi lemak you know. Same thing. We can go Seremban 3, Bukit Jawi or even KGPA and be treated to similar visuals.

IMG00382-20100716-0946.jpg picture by gilagolf

Fun Factor (1 /5)

Thanks to the service we were getting from the grumpy caddies, we didn’t really have a lot of fun at all. And we were a naturally fun group, you know. But one of my guys were seething when he asked for a 3 wood and the caddy gave a 5 wood. He walked halfway and found it to be wrong and had to wait again for the caddy to change. Another instance was when I hit a ball off the green and needed my 60 degree. I had to wait there for close to 5 minutes before she came with the right club for me. And to think we are paying for these clowns.

IMG00388-20100716-1039.jpg picture by gilagolf

Also, the Valley is darn difficult. It’s a complete opposite from the Gardens. And I supposed, I’d like to say mentally we weren’t prepared for the Valley at all. While the gardens was generally benign, like Bangi, the Valley played like bloody Seremban 3 or something. The shift in difficulty was something we didn’t do too well with, as can be testified with our escalating scores to the hundreds. We’re not complaining based on that only of course, but hey, a Gilagolf review is very emotional based, and we don’t have a lot of data to back up our nonsensical reviews.

Granted, there was a bit of fun, when a birdie was dropped by one of the guys, but the overall experience wasn’t great, and at the end of the game, we were just waiting to knock off and go for lunch. Always a bad sign for a course.

IMG00387-20100716-1031.jpg picture by gilagolf


So is Glenmarie recommended? The Valley is not. And we might piss off some Glenmarie stalwarths here who live and die by the Valley, but by charging us a ‘discounted’ rate of RM181 per person, and having the type of service so unusually poor that I can get better service from the dodgy DVD seller on the street, the tone is set for this course. The golfing experience is mediocre, the aesthetics is so-so, but the overall package is just something we will not recommend unless you are the type that enjoys suffering slowly in the bubonic plague.

IMG00394-20100716-1247.jpg picture by gilagolf

The good: The travel is definitely an easy one, if you can survive the jam; the amount of bunkers definitely gives a different challenge; the contoured greens are nice and varied.

The bad: The customer service is atrocious; the caddies are as knowledgeable as the piece of loose gravel in the buggy track; the price doesn’t justify the course experience; the mediocre course just can’t cut it in an area where KGSAAS, Tropicana and Saujana ply their trade.

The skinny: 16 of 40 divots (40%). Congratulations, Glenmarie Valley for becoming the latest, most high profile course to be awarded the WOTM award. You will probably have better service as a POW in a WWII concentration camp. Take your moolahs and use it elsewhere. Glenmarie Valley is to be avoided.

Danau Golf Club (UKM)


Ok, very quickly, I’m going to say a word and tell me immediately what comes to mind.


I don’t know about you, but I’m thinking beach and water. Perhaps due to it sounding a little like Datai or Damai, both of which are beachside courses. So when I say “Danau”, you wouldn’t be thinking of some combat course in the middle of a university premise, would you?

Welcome to Danau Golf Club, aka UKM golf club. UKM here stands for Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, which sounds a lot like UPM, which also have a golf course. I won’t be surprised if there’s a UKM vs UPM Tavistock  cup, where each university pits their best golf players who don’t need to study to pass against each other.

UKM definitely gets more points for being creative about their names. Face it, Danau sounds a lot more impressive than, “Lets have a tournament in UKM!”. Why doesn’t UPM come up with something, like Eoworth Woodlands Club or Falling Vale Hills Club, instead of, umm, let’s play at UPM. It’s very unprofessional and unglamorous!

IMG_1083.jpg picture by gilagolf

Travel ( 3/5)

Golf courses must, by default, consider golfers as a bunch of yahoos, whose intelligence in directions is severely limited by the stimulant endorphins that are clogging up their brain cells in anticipation of a round of golf. It’s been proven by various scientific bodies that when someone is at a heighten state of mind, such as anticipating a round of golf or having sex, the human mind is incapable of focusing on anything else, particularly roads and directions. Hence most accidents in 2009 occured when the car involved was on their way to the golf course, or a brothel. Check it, it’s true.

Hence, idiotic golf courses like Bukit Unggul and other hard to find places like Damai Laut violates the first rule of golf courses: Make it easy for these yahoos to find. Thankfully, Danau is easy to find. Just head along the North South highway, take the Bangi turnoff and immediately, you will find what is known as the largest roundabout on earth. It’s true. It’s so huge that you’ll feel like you’re going into a different timezone by the time you exit. Anyways, head straight from the largest roundabout on earth. You’ll hit the second round about, and this time, take a 3 o’clock. Go straight and voila, you’re in UKM!


Now, this is VERY important. NEVER EVER enter into a university. Remember UPM? The stupidity of Malaysian universities is that they make the signs so small and filled with so many words, you need a bookmark to read it through.

IMG_1032.jpg picture by gilagolf

Instead, at the traffic light before UKM, take a left. You will go past a field on your right. Watch for a right turning and take it. You will be on a small road and just head straight all the way until you see Danau on your left. Kudos to UKM for allowing golfers to NOT enter the university to get to their course!

Price ( 2/5)

We managed to play for free green fee that day due to some inner connections, but here’s the actual price:



Sunday afternoon:98RM

Is it a good price? I mean, sure, it’s Saujana running the place, the folks that gave us the crazy greens in Beringin. But at 84, it’s almost RM20 more than Beringin, and the weekend rate of RM150 is ridiculous. Sunday afternoon at 98RM? Some might be off to Bangi then, which is next door.

Of course, if you have the SSG Links Card, it’s a lot cheaper as this is a home course, but without it, you’re forking out a lot of money for a university course. UKM needs to understand that in that area, there are a lot of golf courses competing, closest being the god forsaken Bukit Unggul, which of course, Danau is a lot better, I’ll say it up front. But still, you’ve got the palatable Bangi nearby, which a lot of people would prefer, how can they compete?

IMG_1043.jpg picture by gilagolf

First thoughts

First of, if you want to compare Danau to UPM, don’t. Because Danau looks way better. I say ‘looks’, because at least for one, it has a nice club house, which begs the question: where the heck does a university get so much money to build one like this?? Anyway, the buggy stations are well maintained, the sign in was quick and without fuss and before you know it, we were nicely chugging along to the tenth tee box for our tee off.

The 10th tee box was a great welcome for us, with the word ‘Danau’ staring right at us, with OB stakes. We found out the OB stakes was for the next hole, not this one, so feel free to whack the ball over the ravine!

IMG_1037.jpg picture by gilagolf

Service ( 3/5)

We didn’t experience much service, except for when our buggy was dying halfway through our 14th hole and we called Danau and in 10 minutes, the guy came with out buggy. Nice. We’ll mark at as a three, at least, nothing really pissed us off about the service.

IMG_1053.jpg picture by gilagolf

Fairways ( 3/5)

OK, here comes the review. Were the fairways good? Yes, for cow grass. At least it didn’t have any bald  patches that made it so annoying at Bukit Unggul. In fact, maintenance and drainage were pretty good as well, and we didn’t have any issues getting slushed in as we do in other courses like Kinrara and so on.

Fairways toughness? Tough, especially for the first 9 (we teed up back nine first). Some of those fairways, like the one on the second is skinnier than an Ethiopian Kate Moss…serious! We had such a psycho time, the first three guys that teed off sent our ball way right into the jungle. The only one that made it was the clown that topped his drive and zipped the ball like 50 meters. We’re not saying we don’t like it, but you better bring your A-game driving here to Danau.

IMG_1071.jpg picture by gilagolf

Greens ( 2/5)

The greens were mediocre. My flight mates hated it, especially one guy that 4 putted from 4 feet. I’m serious. He putted downhill, missed the hole, ended up 6-7 feet, then slammed his other putt past to where he began, and missed the third and by the time he was finished, the words coming out were as flowery as all the flora and fauna in Danau. The greens were also hard. I think it was made of marble, the ball just bounced and flew off the greens most of the time. Compared to Beringin greens, Danau was no where and was just a huge disappointment. This was because I was such a big fan of Saujana greens, I was trumpeting the greens to be as good as Beringin and it wasn’t. So I had to eat my words. It’s like promoting your kid to be the next Beethoven and getting your entire family and friends to watch his first piano recital and all he can play is Baa Baa Black Sheep. It’s still nice, but man, what a let down, or as we say in Malaysia, potong stim la. Remember KRTU and it’s greens of death? Well, we have a challenger. Danau greens are amazingly contoured. I personally liked it, especially some of the freens that had two-three breaks and several mountains for your ball to climb and three or four-putts are the order of the day. Get your putter ready, because Danau will kill you on the greens especially if it’s playing as fast as it was when we played.

IMG_1076.jpg picture by gilagolf

We’re still giving it a 2, because I’m using Beringin as a reference and I just can’t take Baa Baa Black Sheep when I’ve promoted the Ninth Symphony you know.

Rough (2/5)

OK, I know you think Gilagolf always exaggerates stuff, but you won’t believe how many GURs are there in the rough in Danau. As bad as the wildboars were in Bukit Unggul, I’d think some university students are rearing wild boards and letting them loose on the course every night in UKM. Of course that’s illegal, what do you think! The wildboar patches were present in almost every hole in the first nine, especially hole 8. Here’s what we saw:

IMG_1107a.jpg picture by gilagolf

But seriously, UKM needs to do something about this wildboar problem. It sucks. Rough gets a 2 also because of rocky bunkers. Now we all hate rocky bunkers, because we’re already as bad as a drunk squirrel trying to do algebra when it comes to bunkers, but c’mon, rocks?? Our scratch up, sorry piece of equipments can only take so much abuse!

IMG_1094.jpg picture by gilagolf

Aesthetics ( 3/5)

OK, UKM has two different nines. The first is jungle, Ethiopian Kate Moss fairways, while the other, we’ve got nice water features coming into play. Is it a beautiful course? Not by a long shot, it’s not. Is it better than UPM, heck, yeah. The variety was very welcomed and we especially liked a few holes:

a)      Hole 12, the par 5 with island tee off. This really is a hard tee off because you basically need a lot of confidence. Take a driver and blast it too safe, your ball might end up OB. You mishit, you are in the water, baby!

b)      Hole 18th, this is a great ending hole (for us, it was a 9th hole), because a narrow tee off opens up into a green nestled between four bunkers. Hit the green and you still have multiple tiers to play with.

c)      Hole 3 has to be a signature hole. It’s a 160M par 3, with a huge elevation difference. It’s like that 7th hole in Bandar Utama. The turn off was of course the multiple chalk lines for GUR found here.

d)     Hole 4 is a killer 590m par 5. It’s never ending, lined with jungle on the right.

IMG_1057.jpg picture by gilagolf

Fun Factor ( 4/5)

Even though I am convinced all of us involved might be closer to skin cancer thanks to our exposure to the sun in Danau, I believe we all had a lot of fun. It was hot, make no mistake and a few of us had mirages of lakes and middle eastern belly dancers doing their thing on the greens (which obviously affected our approach shots, what do you think?), but overall, thanks to the variation of greens and fairways and holes in Danau, we were able to keep our morale up (except for the guy who four putted from four feet).

One thing: if you are a newbie, please be careful when implementing the dreaded “One Jug of Beer if don’t drive past ladies tee” rule. If you’re not sure of yourself, declare that you don’t want to participate (and you probably will be castrated emotionally by your flightmates for the rest of your life), because in some holes, the ladies tee is like 100 – 150 meters away. Serious. Don’t say we never warned you.

IMG_1069.jpg picture by gilagolf

I think some of the holes certainly made us think. Most hackers are mentally emasculated as evidence in the Ethiopian Kate Moss Hole on the 2nd.

Golfer 1 blasts his drive into oblivion in the jungle to the right.

Golfer 1: ***$&*!!!

Golfer 2: Eh, this is short hole, only 280 meters only. Just use iron, hit fairway la.

Golfer 3: Eh, but you can one on

Golfer 2 stops and thinks. It does not occur to him, of the 2,347 times he has tried to one on a par 4, he has only achieved that feat once, and that too when his sliced ball hit a bird, bounced off a branch, hit a tapir and landed short but had a monkey pick up the ball to place it on the green. He believes that might happen again. He whacks his driver into oblivion.

Golfer 2: **&#$&#!!!!!

Golfer 3: Hahaa! (Takes up a 7-iron)

Golfer 4: Eh, no balls ah? Play 7-iron?

Golfer 3 is clearly miffed by the question on the validity of his testicles. He immediately takes up driver, measures and blasts into oblivion.

Golfer 3: *&$*&#$^!!

Golfer 4 picks up his driver, mishits and rolls 50 meters on the fairway, best shot of the day.

Everyone laughs and have fun, and have astronomical scores.

Why are we so stupid when we play golf??

IMG_1092.jpg picture by gilagolf


By the time we approach the last hole in Danau, those middle eastern belly dancers had turned into gigantic hydras with fire coming out of their nostrils. We were almost all delusional, and stumbled with barely a concern for our scores. All in all, if you were to play I suggest you play first nine, second nine, instead of backwards like what we did. The second nine is a lot easier on the heat due to water in 4 of the holes.

IMG_1090.jpg picture by gilagolf

Overall, Danau proved to be an extreme challenge, especially if you are a newbie. Watch those ladies tee, and just get past those. If you can play in Danau and score well, you’re set to play anywhere.

The good: Accessibility; reasonable service; good variety of holes makes it interesting and memorable; contoured greens are hellish to putt on but still fun when you see opponent four putt from four feet; definitely fun if you have a bunch of gilagolfers who don’t mind having astronomical scores

The bad: The greens are disappointing for Saujana; rough is totally hacked up by wild boars, price is not very competitive given the proximity of Bangi, IOI, UPM etc.

The skinny: 22 of 40 divots (55%). The price at the moment might serve as a turn off, because unless you are SSG Links member, I don’t see how someone will pay RM84 for weekday without food. Bangi is too close geographically and serves as a competition…and they have Food! But try this course, and see if you can score and survive the Ethiopian Kate Moss Hole number 2.

IMG_1102.jpg picture by gilagolf

Danau Score Card


Danau Information

Address: Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia

43600 UKM Bangi, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Contact: +603-89258953

Fax: +60389250855


Saujana GCC – Bunga Raya


Every golfer, whether hacker or professional, would have the ‘Top 3′ courses he/she wants to play in before dying. It’s natural. Of all instincts in the animal kingdom, two instincts rise above all: the instinct to mate, and the instinct to choose the top 3 courses to play. For me, it’s Augusta, St Andrews and Pebble Beach. But since those are currently out of reach (both geographically and budget-wise), I have to scale down to the Malaysian standards to the following 3: Saujana, Kota Permai, Mines. Of course, you can talk about Sungai Long, Bukit Jambul etc but why these 3 are so attractive is simply because Saujana and Kota Permai have hosted numerous high profile tournaments and Mines have had the pleasure of Tiger Woods’ footprints, spits and curses over 4 rounds of the Malaysian Open years ago (did I mention that his appearance fee is possibly more than the winner’s prize money?).

So when the opportunity came to play in Saujana, it was like an invitation to the Masters. We had 3 flights and those who never played the course before were highly strung up because we didn’t want to screw it up and look like idiots. So lots of planning, training went into the week before we were supposed to tee it up.

Which brings back to one of Gilagolf’s theory: No matter how much hackers practice on the range, there is no difference. They will suck, regardless.

Obviously my confidence level wasn’t very high, having trudge through a pair of 95s in Tasik Puteri and KRTU, and developed a horrendous duck hook along the way.

Travel (5/5)

We like courses that are nearby, i.e not too far from where we stay, and not too inaccessible, i.e too deep inside housing estates like Tasik Puteri, Nilai Springs, The Nameless Course in Seremban 3. We gravitate a lot to courses who are smart enough to be built next to a highway like KGNS or KGPA. Or in some cases like Saujana and Seri Selangor and Tropicana, we have the highway built next to the course.

It’s very simple to get the Saujana, even a blind cow can eventually find its way there. Remember the old airport, Subang airport? Well, head towards it, either from the federal highway (in which case, head past the Motorola (now Freescale) LDP bridge and stay left and follow the cute aeroplane symbol. If you’re coming from the NKVE, turn off at Subang, and right after the toll, stay right. You’ll make a big turn and end up on the road to Subang airport.

From there, stay left, looking at the signs that says Saujana and Ara Damansara. Turn off to Saujana and take a 9 at the small roundabout. The club is on the right.

As you drive up the road, revel in its history, like how other lucky golfers get to drive up Magnolia Lane in Augusta. This is the closest you can get to the local version of Augusta.

Here’s the official map from Saujana’s website.

I know, it doesn’t say much does it? In fact, for a premier golf course, I wish they would spend a little more on their website. I mean, if you compare it to Augusta’s website, this looks as if it was created by a bunch of college nerds out to make a quick buck.

Price (2/5)

According to the website, non members pay RM353 for an 18 hole round. That’s just green fees and insurance, mind you. Buggies are – get this – RM82 for twin sharing. RM82??! What the heck kind of buggy are they giving us, one attached with a freaking robot chauffer? We find out later that it was equipped with GPS for to track you distance. After fiddling with glee on the first hole, we all forgot about the GPS and just played golf like how we play.

Golfer: (To caddie) “Eh, how far-ah-the hole?”

Caddie: “150, boss. Take 6 iron la.”

Golfer: “150? Looks nearer one? No la, I strong hitter, 7 iron.”

Caddie: “But boss, ada wind la…don’t believe, check GPS la.”

Golfer: “7 iron!!! ”

Proceed to hit short into the bunker.

Golfer: “AIYAA! Wind laaaa!!!” (Tomahawk the 7 iron into the ground)

Caddies cost 40 bucks each, so it’s 20 per buggy. So here’s the overall price you are expected to pay (kaching!):

353 + 41 + 20 + 25 (minimum tip is 50 to caddie per buggy). = RM439.

Instead of giving it a -100 for price, we understand this is a premium course, so we’re bumping it up to a 2. Come on, Augusta comparisons are just for fun. No way in a zillion years will Saujana be even mentioned together with Augusta.

First thoughts

As I said, it was a nervous affair to come into Saujana. I was hoping we would get championship course, called the Palm Course, but more glamourously as “The Cobra”, but obviously, we’re still considered second class citizens in our little tournament and got bumped to their secondary course, The Bunga Raya course, otherwise known as “The Crocodile”. There is absolutely no reason why it should be named the crocodile, because we expected to see some reptilian obstructions along the fairway, which we did not. Neither is it a watery course, with water only in play towards the end. Perhaps it’s the fact that once the rough catches your balls, it’s like how a crocodile locks its jaws when it grabs hold of your balls, never letting it go until it crunches your balls into a million pieces. We’re talking about golf balls here, by the way.

Because this is Saujana, we’re willing to separate the two courses (Bunga Raya and Cobra) into different reviews (that is, if we ever find ourselves playing on the Cobra in this lifetime).

Service (3/5)

This was a game serviced by one of our generous vendors, so check in, registration was a breeze. I just turned up and we were ready to go. As mentioned, there is a GPS unit attached to each buggy but that’s about it. We hardly use it except for a few holes where we distrust our caddies (who for some reason, get offended when we do that).

The caddies were good. They know the course, they know the greens and you will need them to read these greens. Saujana is diabolical in the greens. What I didn’t quite like was how arrogant some of them were. We had a guy who was probably a 4 handicaper but he wasn’t my caddie. He seems like a nice fellow, someone like Nan, from Air Keroh, and he was constantly teaching my friend in the other buggy, how to release his drives.

My caddie was a girl, whom I thought was Indonesian (by default) but turned out to be a local Chinese. So it was the first time that I actually conversed with my caddy in Cantonese! But she wasn’t that great. Some of the reads she gave was way off, but some were good. But when I didn’t pull it off, she would go off in a huff saying I didn’t listen to her. What? Excuse me, how the heck am I supposed to be good enough to hit that chip exactly where you pointed? You think I am pro or what? One time I blasted out of a bunker and she says, “Why you hit so hard? Now long putt to hole.” I shot back that with our skill, anything out of the bloody bunker is good enough. It was a good thing she was a girl and my natural gentleman instinct overcame by barbaric instinct to wring her neck after 13 holes and plant a hundred balls into her thick skull.

It’s annoying when you hit a long putt and she goes, “See, I give correct read.” And when you miss, she goes, “Why never listen to me?”. Gosh, how about I drive your RM80 buggy into one of the lakes with you strapped behind it?

Fairways (3/5)

I was a little surprised to find the fairways in such a mediocre condition. Now all this is relative. The fairways are nice, with the ball sitting up like a carpet. But if I were to fork out nearly RM500 for a course, you need to give me something more than ‘nice’. It has to be Tropicana nice, as in, pristine. Hole 11’s fairways was mushed up and muddy near the buggy track. Hole 2 had tracks on the fairway and I had to take free drop. Hole 3 area near the green was so soft, my ball disappeared. A couple of holes, it didn’t hold up to the previous day’s downpour as well as I expected it to. So, relatively speaking, the fairways weren’t too special I’m afraid.

Greens (4/5)

Here’s where the madness begins. Saujana’s greens are absolutely crazy. They told us it was 10 on the stimp but I putted so badly, at one point 3 putted 3 holes in a row and ready to whack the putter to my head like Woody Austin. Putting is a snowball effect. You putt like a clown for the first few holes, you start second guessing. And I’ll tell you this, Saujana Greens are harder than KRTU. In KRTU, you can at least see those crazy undulations. You know your ball will break, but you’re not sure how much. Again, we reiterate we are speaking of golf balls. In Saujana, a straight putt could have a left break, an uphill putt could be a downhill. A regulation on could turn into a double bogey when you four putt. I mean, it’s not in your face like KRTU. This is deceptive. It’s subversive. It’s main intention is to trick you and you just watch in despair as your ball rolls…and rolls…and rolls and rolls. I putted like a man possessed, sinking in critical 5 – 6 footers to avoid 3 putting almost every hole. I don’t even have a tap in on any occasion!

And to prove yet again that Gilagolf’s review is in no way affected by how badly we play, we’re giving it a 4/5. The breaks and trickery were great. The maintenance wasn’t super though. Again, this is with the RM500 per round pricetag hanging over everything.

Rough (5/5)

Ah, if the greens were crazy, the rough was probably the best lesson I ever had in golf so far. I think it’s Bermuda, but you will likely enjoy hitting your balls out of lumps of cowdung more than trying to get out of these stuff. It’s gnarly, for the lack of better word. You think your ball is ok because you can see it and it’s not too deep inside. But this grass is strong, you can’t just whack it because it grabs your clubs and twist it any which way, which usually results in your ball being badly topped or bottomed and advancing 20 – 30 meters in pure ignominy. And here’s the difference between pro players and hackers.

For hackers, our learning ability is seriously malfunctioned. In fact, if I may, I can say I am golfically retarded. A pro player, after 1 or 2 holes experiencing the rough, would adjust his game to suit the conditions. For me, I usually chip around the green with my 48 degrees. I like to bump and run the ball, bounce once or twice off the green before releasing it on. I might sound like I know what I’m doing but most of time, it’s because I am really crap with my 60 degree and often end up skulling it. A wise guy might suggest to use my sand or approach wedge, but I will reject it simply because I like how my 48 degrees look at my chipping address. Anyways, so there I was throughout my front nine, trying to bump and run the ball on, and everytime I hit it short, the grass catches it and it gives me absolutely zero bump and zero run. I recall the par 5 8th, I was near the green in 3. My chip was short. My second chip was long and I had to struggle for a bogey.

It took me 9 holes to realize that my 48 degree will be useless and I switched to a 60 to get a higher trajectory on my chips to land on the green and avoid all the stuff between. I immediately got a par on my 10th and started recovering from my front nine 47. In fact, I was only six over when I reached the 18th and needing a par to break 90, and that was when the disaster (which I will chronicle) struck.

Aesthetics (4/5)

Saujana is a great looking course. I’m not just saying because I like groveling before the best club in Malaysia, but it’s a genuine feeling of freedom, standing over the elevated tee box at 1 and 10, and watching your drive soar down. Even the 9th hole, it was a magnificent view on top of the tee box, that sloped down into a valley and up again to the green. Some of these holes are diabolically long, like the Par 4 2nd which requires a perfect drive to hug the little dogleg left. The par 3s are not a piece of cake as well, the 13th is a scary 180 meter hole with an extreme elevation drop from tee to green. I’m surprised that they can come up with so many elevated holes in the Subang area. I always though the land was fairly flat.

It’s not a pretty little thing like Palm Garden, or a horrendously long course like Clearwater, but it’s a little in between. The generous fairways invite you with the driver, and the lack of OB gives you a fake confidence over the teebox. You yank something offline and it goes in the jungle. As the caddie said wryly when I asked if it was OB, “Here got no OB. Boleh cari, boleh main.”, i.e instead of plastering OB stakes around the course like stupid amateur courses like Nilai Springs, KRTU and all that, Saujana dares you to recover from the jungle. That’s why we call it a man’s course. It doesn’t retard the players recovery like other courses with its OB here and OB there. It lets the player decide, hey, if you wanna hit it through the jungle and risk your life, go ahead, make my day, lets see how you recover. Most of the time, we take one look at Saujana’s rough and jungle and we go, forget it.

At the end it’s still a Palm oil estate course like Rahman Putra, so we’re giving it an almost perfect 4/5 for aesthetics. Certainly enjoyable view and a great experience.

Fun Factor (4/5)

It took me a while to really get used to the greens and roughs so I was basically hacking like a turkey before Thanksgiving on my first 9. I was having a great driving day, blasting the ball a mile, that prompted the handicap 4 caddie to comment, “Do that again. I want to see your drive.”

Unfortunately, my other aspects were completely stupid. My approach shots were mediocre at best, and I pulled some nasty shots into the jungle. I was especially struggling with my 23 degree taylormade rescue (which is now back in the store room for punishment), yanking it left all day. My chipping, as mentioned, was like a man with epilepsy. My putting was Jekyl and Hyde, 3 putting at times, and dropping some crazy bombs at others.

Did I have fun overall? Sure, how is it not possible to have fun in Saujana? I would have gone home a happy and satisfied man if only I didn’t screw up the 18th. Like the show “Seconds from Disaster”, here’s a breakdown of the disaster of 18th.

  1. Approach the tee shot, a scary looking one with a peninsular on the left running along a huge lake on this Par 5. You need to aim left and depending on your carry, look for a target in that peninsular. It’s actually a great great hole to end.
  2. My drive hooked a little with a topspin but safely carried the water and into the primary rough.
  3. About 230 meters away to an elevated green, and here was the crucial decision. A 6 iron or my rescue wood? I already faced this dilemma in the 12th hole when I yanked my rescue wood into the jungle and barely escaped with a double thanks to a 20 feet putt over a 10 feet break.
  4. I don’t know why, but this is how insane people operate; I thought I could pull it off again. The exact same thought process came in: Come on, you can do this. But it’s deep rough. Maybe a 6 iron to just play it safe. Nah, what the heck, I want to go far. Far!!
  5. And with that, the devil on my left shoulder triumphed over the angel voice of reason on my right shoulder and I took my hybrid.
  6. I came down so steep, the ball got popped up by my rescue wood’s top and it sent the ball short, high and right. This is by far my crap shot.
  7. Every golfer has a crap shot. Shots that cannot be analysed, cannot be simulated on the range no matter how hard you try, shots that come once or twice in a round, often with disastrous results. Some struggle with the duck hook, some with the sh*kns, mine is exceptionally embarrassing because it just pops up 20 meters and go far right. In this case, yep, into the dang water.
  8. So lying 4 about 220 to the hole uphill, you reckon I would learn my lesson by now and try to five on and save bogey. Instead, I used the same bloody club and hooked it left.
  9. I was lucky there was a bunker there to catch it, else it would have dribbled off into God knows where. From the bunker, I hit perhaps my best 8 iron ever for the day, straight, lofted landing just off the green with a severe downhill for my bogey chip.
  10. I chipped using my 60 degree, saw it land, saw it track. My best chip of the day. It looked to be in the hole but last minute turned, careen off the lip and settling 4 feet away from the cup.
  11. I needed to hit a measly 4 footer to salvage some pride and I’ve been hitting this all day with my eyes closed.
  12. As the case for nearly every hacker in a similar position of a must make putt: I came up tentative and short, settling for a humiliating triple on the final hole, and a 92 overall. Bah.


So ends the Saujana experience. I was hoping this would enter the mythical Gilagolf status of DAGTH (Died and Gone to Heaven) category, but it falls short due to several reasons as stated. Still, it was a good round of golf overall, which could have been better. The course obviously has a lot of things going for it. If someone pays for you or you have extra money to spare, then Saujana – Bunga Raya course is a great place to go. The wide fairways are super friendly to a crazy driver like me. It doesn’t limit your game with stupid OB stakes like Nilai Springs or KRTU or Seremban 3. It’s a man’s course, so you’re gonna make sure your driver is working well, or you’re not gonna regulation a lot of holes. The course, with its contour changes is also superbly designed with a few holes requiring placement and thinking and not just smashing. Definitely a must play!

The good: Travel is great and fast; the greens will test your resolve not to smash your putter to pieces; the rough is a heck of an experience; overall aesthetics is very attractive, with contours and elevations for a different experience every hole; last hole on both 9s a great experience.

The bad: Crazy pricing designed to force you to mortgage your home; fairways are not exactly up to par (pun intended obviously); caddies are a little annoying if you get the wrong ones; GPS is aesthetically nice but functionally too advanced for stone age hackers like us.

The skinny: 30 of 40 divots (75%). Anything with the name Saujana in front would be a good experience. Even with the fairways far from perfect, Saujana – Bunga Raya course manages to come in third in the Gila Meter behind Palm and Datai. A definite “play” for this course!

Saujana – Bunga Raya Score Card

Saujana GCC Information


Saujana Golf And Country Club
P.O. Box 8148, Kelana Jaya,
46783 Petaling Jaya,
Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Contact: +603-78461466

Fax: +603-78467818



Kelab Rekreasi Tentera Udara (KRTU)


In Malaysia, golf has apparently become so popular that universities have their own golf clubs (UPM, UniTen, UKM). We understand the need for this, since students, being naturally attention deficient, require as much distractions as possible from turning into rioters and revolutionaries who organize protests in the streets. Trust me, I know. I was a student before and I fantasize about marching down the street with a band of hooligans shouting slogans we don’t understand. It’s cool to be part of a revolution.

The peculiarity of golf also extends to our police and air force, the former having Titwangsa Golf Club and the royal air force having KRTU, which stands for Kelab Rekreasi Tentera Udara; i.e Air Force Recreational Club.

It kinda reminded me of when Golf was banned in England when it was being too much of a distraction for the queen’s army. Our Malaysian army is definitely not impressing anyone and will probably lose even to the Micapulga Pygmies of Southern Papua New Guinea in a face to face battle; but I’ll bet the farm that our air force can kick those pygmies’ butt when it comes to golf. Bring it on!!

Travel (1/5)

Any traveling that requires transiting through a trunk road through two kampungs on a single lane into a military base gets a 0 for us. Sure it’s not that far away, but trust me, when the jam starts, you feel like chewing your steering wheel into pieces. The road is riddled with potholes and when you do find yourself in the air base, you need to leave your IC at the checkpoint. After all, this is an air base, even though the only things I see flying here were a bunch of crows at the first tee. You can also employ the ‘ACCESS HAND METHOD’. When you come near the checkpoint, go faster and raise your hand as if to acknowledge that you are a member of the air force. I did just that and they raised the barricade and gave me back the ‘ACCESS HAND METHOD RESPONSE’, no matter that I was dressed in my golf attire and looked every bit the chinaman I am. This method is a failsafe way to get into any place in Malaysia, including the prime minister’s office (I haven’t tried that yet, but go ahead and it will work). Aside from that, traveling is a fat 0 for us because more than the distance, we hate, absolutely hate pothole filled, one lane trunk roads with traffic jam.

If you insist, here’s the directions and map. The map is not even specific, it’s to another company. But you get the idea: TUDM is where KRTU is, so head to TUDM!

To get to KRTU, head to the old Subang Airport, also known as Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport, but nobody cares anyway. It’s just Subang airport to everyone. If you don’t know how to get to Subang airport, you can either use the federal highway and head to Subang, Shah Alam and follow the nice airport sign (it has an aeroplane symbol on it). If coming from NKVE, turn off at the Subang toll, stay right and follow the aeroplance symbol sign.

You’ll hit the big subang airport roundabout. Take a 12 and now drive all the way, following signs to Kampung Baru Subang, Monterez. You’ll be on that accursed trunk road, with the runway on the left. At the Traffic lights, turn left, following the blue TUDM sign and you will be in Kampung Seri Subang. You will hit a T junction where right will lead you to Monterez, and left will lead you to TUDM. Go for TUDM (although after this review, you’ll wish you went right instead). Go all the way to the end of the road you you will be in the air force base. Once inside (either by giving your IC or hand access method), drive following the road and you’ll soon see KRTU in front of you.

Price (1/5)

On a weekday, I forked out RM88 to play in KRTU. I was walk in, while others paid about RM35. RM88 is only RM2 shy of playing in Palm garden using AGN. Why am I subjecting myself to such humiliation to pay so much on a course that looks like my grandma’s backyard?

RM88 is overpriced for a weekday walkin. I mean, I know they need to upgrade their planes, but what in heavens name do you think you can achieve charging citizens of this beloved country (whose taxes pays for this course anyway) RM88? I don’t agree with the pricing, they should slash it to RM60 or below, like UPM. Face it, ain’t nobody is going to dream of playing in KRTU if they had a chance.

First thoughts

The moment I drove up, one thought came to my mind. It looks an awful lot like UPM. And KRPM. Both these courses are crap hard to play on. These are courses that are not pretty, like a 200 pound woman with moustache who is bent on pounding you into submission. UPM’s saving grace was the green; KRPM saving grace was the maintenance and the layout. We have yet to see what saves KRTU.

I was actually pretty confident coming into this game. I just blistered Kinrara with an 83 (which could have been a whole lot better if I didn’t screw up a couple of putts), and I thought I should be able to navigate fairly well around this KRTU course, although I know about its OB palm oil trees and undulating greens. I was hitting my irons good enough to clock in 87 in my previous 3 rounds. I’ve finally got golf all figured out. It’s an easy game. Time to break 80 and turn pro.

Ah, the demise of illusions. Golf mercilessly annihilates these wonderful, beautiful illusions.

Service (2/5)

The ladies at the counters took so long to sort our 3 flights out, I mentioned to her that I was going to grow a beard. Which took considerable time, since it’s faster for a snail to learn how to dance cha-cha than for a Chinese to grow a beard.We were getting a little peeved at the service, but everything was forgiven when I ate the nasi lemak at the cafeteria. It’s one of the best nasi lemak in the world. They gave us salted fish, a big one and you can add sambal as well. Mama mia!

Surprisingly, I expected the club house to be some kind of patched hut made out of cow dung, but these air force boys apparently has a whole lot more class than those fellows at UPM, Selesa Hills and Kundang Lakes. The shower room was quite nice and well kept, and the club house definitely was like a normal golf club house…which makes me wonder what these fly boys are doing with our tax money…

Officer: Shall we spend our 2008 budget on the newly developed guided missile for our air craft?

Commanding Officer: Nah, let’s go with a larger pro shop and more shower units for our golfers, hey?

Officer & Commanding Officer: Malaysia Boleh! (which translates, Malaysia Can!)

Fairways (1/5)

We caught KRTU after a heavy downpour and man, it shows. You know some clubs can really hold well to rain (Tiara Melaka comes to mind) and some just completely fails the GilaGolf Rain Test, which consist of having God pour out tons and tons of rain down on the tested course. This is the difference between KRPM and KRTU. While KRPM retained some semblance of pride, KRTU is degenerated into one big mushy piece of crap. The fairways were completely submerged and in one hole, where thankfully my drive landed on dry land, the grass was so bare I thought I was playing off a gigantic divot. I rarely want to blame the course for playing like a dingbat drunk with JDs, but when the rain came beating down on us on hole 15th, I kinda knew this wasn’t going to be the day I turn pro.

Greens (3/5)

One of the features of KRTU are the extreme undulation of the greens. They make putting akin to pulling out your fingernails with a clamp. And chipping is like sitting on top of a thousand rusted nails heated with acid. One hole, I was just off the green and, level with the pin, and chipped almost 90 degrees from the pin. Not enough. It caught the slope and rolled down, down and off the green.

We kinda liked it. Not that we’re sadists, but it makes reading the greens a lot of fun, a lot of challenge. Plus, watching Augusta this weekend, we can kinda pretend we’re putting on Augusta a bit. However, as one of my flightmate put simply: The closest resemblance to Augusta we can play at our level is AlorStar…and that too requires an inhuman drive up north.

The greens weren’t in super shape; the rain has softened it considerably and it wasn’t very well kept. But you can’t beat the undulations, right, so if there’s EVER going to be a chance we ever come back here, it would be for the greens.

Rough (2/5)

The rough is definitely not easy. And it’s a killer. My playing partner drove well on the 10th, then hit a good second shot that veered just slightly to the right. Bye bye. It landed inside a giant bush. I completely made a mess out of my par 4s and par 5s, escalating my strokes more and more, trying to muscle my way out of the rough. Forget it. Once in the rough, pick a spot and take your medicine. The narrow alleyways they call fairways don’t help either. I avoided water mostly and just hit the bunker once, but it was enough to know it wasn’t well maintained. Long grass also swallowed up our balls, and once your ball is plugged in the rough, it’s plugged. Your balls are mashed potatoes. Golfballs, that is. I almost snapped my 9 iron a’la Tiger in last year’s Augusta when I hit my second on the 9th and my shaft collided with a coconut tree. What’s a coconut tree doing there? Also I strained my back when I leapt across a stream searching for my ball. I gotta remind myself my bones ain’t young anymore. I blame it on the rough for that.

Aesthetics (3/5)

Strange as it may sound, KRTU is actually quite a picturesque course. Sure, we’ve got like a million palm oil trees all round the course, but I’ll grant it one thing. They make par 3s very well, especially the picturesque 7th, playing to an island green like TPC Sawgrass 17th. I think you probably know by now that we make random references to famous courses and holes as if we’ve played them before. Of course we have, in our mind. I also beat Tiger 3 and 1 in my mind and dated Diane Lane before. Any more questions?

Back to aesthetics: Especially on the second nine, the undulation provides some stunning tee shots, such as the intimidating 10th. I think in this sense it reminded me of UPM. Whether it deserves another shot, well, it would take a lot more than pretty par 3s to drag us back, I assure you.

Fun Factor (2/5)

Not to say anything about my 9-iron vs tree trunk episode, or my strained back, I don’t think we had a whole load of fun in KRTU. The putts brought some excitement back, but with the rain, and with the course conditions, especially the poor shape of the fairways, it’s difficult to remain positive. My game was affected by this, to be sure, but also, my deciding to play like a Andulician goatherd didn’t serve the cause. I had some super chances to nail my score down, but I duffed my 7, duffed my 6, duffed my 22 degrees. I’d like to think the soggy ground played a part, but my swing was just too steep and completely dug into the soft ground. I could have changed my method, but heck, who do you think I am? I’m just a hacker that keeps doing the same thing expecting a different result, otherwise known as being insane. Also, the cross wind and rain that poured down at 17th brought us an imaginary Carnoustie, another meaningless reference. And we obviously have imaginary games to go with Carnoustie.

I managed, however to par all my par 3 holes, something I haven’t done in a long while. That was the only saving grace for me.


I wish I played better than my 95, my worst score since Berjaya Hills in December, so that when I make conclusions, you wouldn’t think I’m whining like a sore loser. The plain fact is that I sucked. I made way too many mistakes on this course. I let 83 get into my head. I thought golf was tamed, figured out, but just when you think that, this game kills you off. Why do we still subject our egos to such a mauling like this??!? Golf is so demoralizing, isn’t it? It really makes a monkey out of us.

The good: The greens. KRTU greens are definitely worth trying out, not the maintenance but for the different undulations; great great Nasi Lemak; interesting looking par 3s.

The bad: Travel is an experience reserved for the mad people; fairways are muddy and wet and fails the GilaGolf rain test (conducted by God); service is very third world; course is a little repetitve after a while; not easy for the everyday hacker due to length and massive amounts of OBs.

The skinny: 15 of 40 divots (37.5%). We won’t recommend KRTU, but neither are we discounting it out forever. The greens are still good enough to visit, as are the Par 3s. But find another course if you want a fun round, this is not a course you want to bring a crooked swing to. Or a sprained back.

KRTU Score Card

KRTU Information


Pengkalan Udara TUDM, Subang, 40000 Shah Alam, Selangor.

Contact: +603-78467170

Fax: +603-78464415

Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort


Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort has a reputation. I’m not sure whether it’s a myth or not, so it might not be entire true, but there were stories abounding on how in a fit of rage (probably after losing a big bet), a golfer bashed another golfer to death on this golf course. I’m not sure whether it adds to its notoriety, but I recall my last experience in Bukit Jalil was not a great one. Then again, as in KGPA, I was just starting out in golf and was a complete hacker in the game, to be fair to the course.

I was invited once again to play there, so armed with our trusty GilaCam, I went.

Travel (3/5)

The club is not too out of the way. You can either come from the LDP from PJ. Pass the Sunway toll and head straight to TPM (Technology Park Malaysia). You will go past Kinrara on the Bukit Jalil highway (which is just a narrow trunk road jammed like a monkey’s artery), and soon reach a traffic light. At the lights, take a left and about 100 m up the road, a right turn into the club. You can also come in from the Sg Besi highway. Make a turn to the Bukit Jalil National Sports Complex and head towards TPM. Turn right at the TPM entrance and you will be on the other side of the trunk road. Look for the traffic light that enables you to turn right. After that right, 100m, you will see a right turn.


Yet another way is from KL Old Klang Road. Just head towards OUG (overseas union garden). Opposite the mall, there is a right turn traffic lights. Take it and go straight ALL THE WAY. This is a new road and you will eventually end up on the road where you need to take a left into Bukit Jalil golf course.

It gets a 3 because no matter which road you use, you will be jammed like crazy, unless you get the early morning flights….and by the time you’re done, you’re still jammed up. For some reason, that whole area seems to have 3-4 times the amount of people the infra can allow for.


Price (3/5)

I played a weekday, and it cost me RM70 for walk in, no food included. Now this is by no means steep, it’s quite reasonable, especially if you take into account that it’s a fairly centralized course, where people from KL, PJ can access (which is also bad, as you will see later). Whether RM70 is worth it for this course, well, I’d say it’s not. It should be priced a little lower if it’s based strictly on features. But as location is everything, I’d say it’s quite reasonable.

First thoughts

The first thing I usually do is check the website, not to get information (since we have concluded golf websites are bloody useless in giving REAL information about the course), but to have a good laugh. I don’t know who they get to write these lines:

‘Impressive… This is one word that aptly describes the Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort.

There is a general air of calmness at the BJGCR. The warmth is immediate as you step into the lobby area. The gentle breeze that blows from the green field caresses your skin as you sip your morning coffee at the “open-air” golfer’s lounge.

The 18-hole golf course, designed by renowned Australian designer Mr.Max Wexler, offers golfers a real challenge at hole No.18. Golfers call it a ‘real test of one’s swing’.’

I really would like to point out the part where it says it caresses my skin as I sip my morning coffee at the “open air” golfer’s lounge. Usually anything in quotes means the writer is attempting a joke, or being sarcastic, or just being ignorant about the use of quotes. First of all, the lounge is not open air. It just overlooks the golf course. This is consistent with 99.99% of golf clubs in the world.

Second of all, I wish they would not use the word caress without referring to a beautiful woman doing the caressing. It’s just wrong to have another thing caress you.

Third, the Milo I ‘sipped’ cost me RM4.90. For a glass. I could purchase a small tin of Milo, go back into the kitchen and make milo for 20-30 people, and still bring home some for my dog.

Fourth, it took aeons for my Milo to appear. I mean how long does it take to make a cup of milo? 20 minutes? Come on! Are we grinding cocoa at the back or what?

And I dare, double dare anyone who actually uses the phrase ‘real test of one’s swing’ in conversation. Can you imagine two contractors lining up for the 18th going:

Contractor 1: Well, here we are at the 18th.

Contractor 2: Jolly good old boy. It certainly is a real test of one’s swing! I can’t wait to sip some coffee and have the wind caress my skin again.

Nobody talks like that. A more realistic conversation would be:

Contractor 1: Aiyaaaa, %^&##&, @#$&%*($ 17th hole should have par! Now we’re at this &#*$&$^ 18th.

Contractor 2: #&$^!!!! #^$&#^$ #*#(@*#& @#(*$! #*$&#*. @#$*#& #*$#&$ !@$%*%! Correct or not??

Contractor 1: #$#^&$# #&$##&^ )_)#@$@#*($&@#*(@# *@(#&$@##@$!!!!

I know these are all marketing speak and they need to write like this. But ‘caress your skin’? Come on, stop it!

Service (0/5)

This club’s service is pathetic. First, the aforementioned milo with it’s pricing of mythical proportions. For lunch, we had the same experience. It took so long for my noodle to appear, I went to shower and dress up. When I came out, a good 40 minutes after ordering, they only just arrived with my food. Now, I know Tropicana was as bad, but that was serving a full house. Here, we only had one more table aside from us patronizing this place. And they only had two people at that table. In fact, they weren’t even eating, just drinking!!

The price here is absolutely cut throat. NEVER order any drinks, order only plain water (which they take from the tap no doubt). Any glass will cost you RM5 upwards. Because I wasn’t eating meat for the meantime, I ordered my noodles with only vege. I asked them to add vegetables (to replace the meat). Instead, I got nothing. Just 3 strands of vegetables and noodles and they still charged me RM9 for the small plate.

Again, if you think this has nothing to do with golf, welcome to Malaysia. Food is the primary base for everything, so if the food experience is crap, the golfing experience is crap. I’m sorry, we cannot divorce them from each other.

In fact they suck so bad that when we asked for the bill, nobody would come with it, until we shouted a few times. Are they deaf or just money phobic?

To top it all, if you want a locker, you need to put a deposit. Normal right? Yeah, usually RM10 or RM20 would be enough. Here in Bukit Jalil, you need to cough up RM50 for the deposit.

And the towel stinks! Come on! For RM50, I expect a glass of wine and an attendant to hand me my towel. Well, maybe not the second part, but RM50? Pfft.

Fairways (1/5)

Ouch. The fairway gets hit bad because there is just no letting up on the course. There are only 18 holes, and the amount of traffic here even on a weekday is crazy. Most of the people walk in the morning, and although buggy is on track, some idiot golfer has gone in and messed up the fairway as well. This is probably the same murderous golfer who whacked his playing partner to death.

Aside from that, it didn’t hold up well after yesterday’s downpour. Plug balls, dirt, casual water, the works. Also, although Bermuda, I just don’t feel comfortable hitting from it. They have tufts of grass and you can see the bare dirt beneath. It’s like playing on a balding guy with a comb over. You know, those guys who are thinning at the top, so they grow their sides so they can mop up the side to the top. It’s weird. If I were to bald (which most likely I will, thanks to my genes), I’ll just shave bald. I rather look like a Buddhist monk than have that combover. If it’s gone, it’s gone. Life’s tough. Hopefully, I’ll be married by then and no longer need to impress anyone anymore. Same thing here for the golf course. You know there aint much there, so they try to spread the grass. You fat your shot and you’ll be splashing dirt all over.

Greens (3/5)

I can’t really make of the greens. From the outside, it really looks like crap. Sandy, bald patches all around. But every shot I hit with a reasonable trajectory, it held it like a beaver biting a tree. The Par 5 11th where I was lying 140 meters and I hit my 8 iron, it landed, hop once and bit, 4 feet away for a par. Likewise, the par 3 14th where I hit a 9 iron to 3 feet (and missed the darn birdie), and the par 5 17th where my 6 iron held the green, and I proceeded to 3 putt for bogey. If not for my retarded putting, I would have just be 2 over for the second 9.

I’m giving the greens a good score here. It’s not the best, although the ball bit it with a vengeance, those patches really make a darn mess out of my already messed up putting.

Rough (1/5)

Now I know what this course reminds me of. The horrific Berjaya Hills course. A quick check revealed the problem. This was yet another Berjaya project, i.e a junk. Berjaya in Malay translates to Succeed in English. It doesn’t really say succeeding in what though, so I guess it succeeds in making golf courses that suck. Bravo!

Lalang all around. We’ve established long ago that lalang is bad. It’s too long to actually play your ball if you do find it, and you are probably hitting a King Cobra’s egg anyway and likely to be stung to death after that by that king cobra. The rough is just reminiscent of our adventure in Berjaya Hills. Hit the ball in there and it disappears into oblivion. What I detest are bunkers that are full of rocks, since it scratches my clubs. Nobody scratches my clubs but me! When I tomahawk it, yes, then it deserves to be tomahawked for producing a crap shot. But scratched for getting me out of the bunker?? My poor clubs!

Bad, bad rough.

Aesthetics (2/5)

Here’s the deal. After a while, probably as we were in the middle of the second nine, I was wondering if we were going around in circles, and some monkey is just replacing the hole signs with a different number. Because ALL the holes play, feel and look the same! It’s tee off, on the left OB, right is hazard. Oh, carry a hazard as well. Ok, another one. OB left, right hazard. Another carry. The fairways are ample enough to go with the driver without constipating it ( a term that gives the 4 courses-Nilai Springs, Nameless Course in Seremban 3, Monterez and Seri Selangor-the name, “Constipated Courses of Malaysia”).

Even the signature hole, the 18th with a 185m carry of the water is played ho-hum. In fact, I drove it so far, I almost OBed myself past the fairway, past the buggy track, almost past the OB line at the rough. It could be tough nut for a person without a carry of 190-200m, in that case, just lay it up short.

Some courses have tall pine trees or refreshing, grand, leafy trees surrounding the green, the holes, the tee off. Like in Melaka, where it is really cooling and ‘green’. Bukit Jalil have similar features. Just replace those pine or leafy trees with condominiums. It’s like condominiums being developed or already developed staring down at us in every hole! It gives the course a claustrophobic feeling, and golf courses without the ‘open’ness isn’t really a golf course at all.

Bukit Jalil is definitely not a pretty course at all.

Fun Factor (2/5)

Not many of us had fun. I started the day double bogeying my first three holes before getting a grip of myself on the back 9 and flush in some good shots here and there. I played reasonably well after a week plus lay off, but everyone felt a little lethargic. I guess it’s the fact that each hole plays almost the same, looks the same and soon, even smell the same.

The 18th is still a nice hole to end with, I admit, but it’s not something we haven’t seen before. The snaky Par 5 Hole 9 is probably a better hole to end with, since it’s really narrow, and really snaky. I know this isn’t a great description, but hey, we’re hackers. If you like description, get the guy who writes about being caressed by the wind.

But aside from that, all the Par 3s were neither here nor there and no, I can’t say it was extremely fun at all.


Bukit Jalil is a course you will probably play and forget about it completely afterwards. Each hole has similar characteristics, and I don’t know if it’s just Berjaya’s way of doing things, they really really really suck at maintaining a course. Avoid this course if possible, but because of it’s close proximity to PJ and KL, you will likely find yourself on it sooner or later. Whatever you do, avoid the F&B area, and go somewhere else for your nutrition.

The good: Traveling is easy and fast, if you avoid the massive jams; these greens look like crap but really plays well; a couple of nice holes like the 9th and 18th.

The bad: Possibly the worst service F&B in Malaysia; fairways are like crap; rough and bunkers are no better; every hole is like the same, it’s like we’re all caught in a loop; aesthetics is just lacking, with so many condominiums and high raise spoiling the skyline.

The skinny: 15 of 40 divots (37.5%). It’s a no go for Bukit Jalil. As a golf course, it lacks character and maintenance, except for the greens. Don’t expect to be sipping your coffee (the lousy service will prevent that) or get caressed by the wind (the condominiums will prevent that). Get golf, coffee and caressing elsewhere!

Bukit Jalil Score Card


Bukit Jalil Information


Jalan 3/155B
Bukit Jalil 57000 ,Kuala Lumpur

Contact: +603-89941600

Fax: +603-89941542


Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam (KGPA)


Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam (KGPA) stands for Public Service Golf Club in Malay. Which doesn’t sound impressive in any language. It also has the distinction of being voted ‘The Most Difficult Course in Malaysia for 3 consecutive years’. I don’t really know how does this attract golfers to it as an advertisement, but I suppose due to the egoistical nature of golfers, we’d like to declare, “Yes, I played in the most difficult course in Malaysia for 3 consecutive years.” It’s like saying, yes, I was in the largest aeroplane disaster in recent history, and hope the girls go fawning over you like some long lost hero. Unfortunately (or fortunately), most fantasies of golfers never come true. However, my last experience with KGPA was as a young golfer, bright eyed, just new to the game, complete innocent of golf’s treacherous nature.

I recall being completely demoralized and destroyed by this course, to a point that I never wanted to pick up a club ever again. The ball kept getting plugged and lost, and I kept hitting my balls out of bounds. It was the most humiliating experience of my life (aside from the time I smacked a girl on her head thinking she was my friend only to find her a complete stranger, and completely pissed with my antics). KGPA took away my innocence, and from that day onwards, golf and me became adversaries, and the game became a war that was won and lost by both sides. I went away knowing that the game was merciless. I went away, learning the golf held no prisoners and gave no quarters.

Well, I’m back.

Travel (5/5)

Say what you like about this category, but any golf courses located in PJ gets an automatic 5. KGPA should get a 10 but it’s not possible to give anything more than 5 (although very possible to get a negative, as some courses have found out!). I routinely head over to KGPA to the driving range since my place is only 5 minutes drive, and I used to work opposite the course and would steal away during lunch to bash balls.

Head to the Damansara Highway on the way to KL/Bangsar. Before seeing Siemens/East Inn building on the right (if you are coming from PJ), stay left, do not go over the flyover. At the traffic light, simply turn left into the club.

If you are coming from KL/Bangsar, it’s a little trickier. After passing Bangsar, you need to stay left and go down the turnoff to Mount Kiara/Sri Hartamas. Do not take the flyover! At the lights, do not turn right to Mount Kiara, simply go straight and you will eventually see Siemens in front of you. At the lights, turn right under the bridge and you will see the road leading up to KGPA.


Price (2/5)

We played on a Saturday afternoon, and even with AGN, it cost us RM120, since it forces us to take a caddy. For non AGN, it’s only about RM125 due to a promotion, but in anycase, it’s still pretty steep for a cow grass course that so far, didn’t sound very impressive. Granted, it was a weekend and probably a peak period so we’re willing to overlook it and give it an ok rating, due to its promotion for walk in golfers. Of course, we saved up on the fuel to get here. But having a caddy forced on us is never a good thing.

First thoughts

I will say this and get it over with: I was impressed with the course. The first hole of the Hill Course was a magnificent elevated view staring down into the generous fairway (which I promptly missed), before going up again to a small green. I don’t recall playing this hole years ago, which goes to show our adage is true: On a course with 3 nines, avoid the 3rd nine (in this case, the Forest Nine). Play Hill and Lake nine, and you won’t regret it. Especially Hill, it offers significant elevation changes that allows you to see the vastness of the course. The Forest nine is mainly for walkers, and I remember playing there and sucking really bad. So, the other adage, “Avoid playing where you really suck bad” comes into play. Follow these rules and life will be beautiful.

Service (2/5)

The forced caddy did a good job. She couldn’t find my first ball (which I found myself) but she was initiated to help out the weaker players in our flight. She ran around, cleaning our clubs and marking our balls. What I liked about her was that she actually, at the end of everything, placed my clubs exactly the way I started: 4 woods in the first compartment; 5,6,7 in another compartment, 8,9,P in another; Sand and Approach in another; and my 48 and 60 degree together. My putter takes one whole compartment. I know, I have two Pitching Wedges in there, but I use my Cleveland CG10 48 only for chipping and nothing else. And yes, I know I have 15 clubs in there and the limit is 14 for golf. Tell me, do you take proper drops? Do you penalize yourself properly? Did you ever remove the tuft of grass behind your ball? Hey, we’re hackers, so these rules only apply when we’re in an anal mode. For today, we could take 25 clubs into the bag for all I care!

The only downside to KGPA is not really related to the golf game we had. Having visited the range for so long, I’ve come to observe the service given in the driving range is completely crap. The guy selling the ball looks as if he will gut you with a rusted blade for asking him to bring the balls. They scold you for playing with an untuck shirt, as if it would distract them when they see our belly buttons as we make a full swing. And the club pro-who calls himself Master Instructor-is just a guy who sits around and chats with his other friends, while yelling across the range to his students, “OK, you’re doing well!” when they have just swung their club farther than the ball. Come on. Show a little dedication and at least make a show of taking pictures and analyzing the swing, even if your camera is a plastic container for food and your computer software is actually a static wallpaper. At least.

Finally, one of my flight mates quit this club some time ago and when he requested for the form to quit, the secretary told him he needs to write a letter himself. It’s very much Malaysian Government style, where they slow things so much, it would be the second coming before anything actually gets done. Ladened with bureaucracy and red tape, you probably need to fill up a form and a questionnaire before you can flush the toilet.

Fairways (3/5)

Finally, on to some golf. From my last experience, I was expecting the fairways to be less than average condition but to my surprise, even from the first tee shot, the whole courses’ demeanor seems to have been altered. I think the management really spent on maintenance, having conditioned the fairways so well, we never experienced a plug ball, except once, near the green on the 17th Par 5. Granted, we were playing under the hot sun, but the course wasn’t overly dry as well. I’ve seen courses like Nilai Springs and Seri Selangor completely flunking the ‘too dry fairway’ test, where underneath the grass was just dirt. Not sand, but hard dirt. Here in KGPA, a nice divot can be taken without any worries of skulling the ball if you hit it fat. Your ball will just trickle 20 meters way but at least it’s not a skull!

Another thing about the fairways here is that even though some holes are long, because of the undulation and elevation, the ball can really roll if it hits a slope. I experienced it on the 3rd hole where a tee shot that cut the dogleg found me 20 meters away from the flag, a 300 meters monster drive. I proceeded to bogey it after some stupid play. On the 10th, again, I blasted the ball to about 40-50 meters on a 350 meters par 4. This time I parred it. It wasn’t because I was an extremely long player but it caught the slope and it rolled and rolled.

Greens (3/5)

The greens were also well conditioned; not superb like Impian but you need to understand where this course was before (i.e crappy) to what it is now (playable and rather nice) to fully appreciate the improvements done by the management. Bravo, KGPA!

If you can get your ball to hold the greens (which are a mixture of large and small, rolling and flat), you have a chance to make your birds and pars.

Rough (4/5)

I landed in the sand a few times and for a club seeing so much traffic, the sand is in great, great conditions. It’s the type that when you explode out of the bunker, your entire view is covered with fluffy white sand, and you can turn your head away in disgust as if something entered your eye. Tiger Woods moment! Yeah!

What makes the course so tough that it should be named the toughest in Malaysia, would be the rough. Hill has more jungle OB (which is bad) and Lake has more, well lakes. Which isn’t so bad unless you land in one. I witnessed an amazing feat in the second hole where one of my playing partners hit a tree in almost every shot he made, i.e he ended with a 10. I found myself in deep rough and couldn’t hack myself out of it as well.

Aesthetics (3/5)

Halfway through the round I turned to my playing partner and said, “Do you regret giving up the membership?”

“A little.” He responded and noted that he has not played here in like years, since he has a Tropicana membership.

KGPA, despite its completely unmarketable name , succeeds in enticing us, not so much with beauty but with features. There’s a difference. There’s the kind of girl you meet at the bar and she really looks hot. All the guys want to buy her a drink, she looks fabulous in a red dress, and even though you suspect her eyelashes are fake, you don’t really care, since the lights are dim and you are on booze anyway. You give her your number and you tell her, let’s meet up for breakfast the next day. When the next day comes, you find out, yes, she’s still pretty, but all she can talk about is herself, her eyelashes and whether red looks better than blue, as finger polish. At the end of the one hour conversation, you feel like strangling her with your belt and throwing her off the cliff. That’s Selesa, Frasers and Berjaya Hills. KGPA is like the girl who quietly and diligently does her job; respects her parents, get on fabulously with your mom, and takes care of you when you are sick. Sure, she might not be hot, but she can really cook darn well and she’s as stable as rock.

KGPA offers a lot of features. From the rolling fairways to the elevated greens and tees, each hole is like an adventure, am exciting proposition. The Par 3s especially are superb. The Hill nine boast of 3 par 5s and 3 par 3s, the 7th and 8th being 174 and 194 meters respectively. The 8th is certainly the signature hole, and many rounds have been torn to shreds by this monster. Make the turn and you see another set of par 3s, a 176 meter carry over water and a 150 meter over a deep gorge, absolutely wonderful to play.

This course, while lacking in aesthetics, makes up for it in character. Unfortunately we don’t have a section for character, so we’ll make it up by giving it a higher…FUN FACTOR!!

Fun Factor (3/5)

A few of our hackers were struggling with the course. Lost balls, OB rough took their toll on them and playing the Hill Nine was just a harrowing experience for a lot of us. It’s simply because if you miss the ball right, for instance, you need to trek up this mountain to get to your ball. We’re not exactly the specimen of athleticism in our hey days, and right now, we’re likely a good competitor for the Madagascar Molass (again, we have no idea what’s a molass, but they sound really slow). In fact, one from my group ended up just puffing cigarettes one after another and refuse to speak to anyone, smoke coming out his ears and mouth. When we made the turn, our game also made the turn, (at least mine did), and on the easier Lake Nine, I scored 5 over 41. This included a missed 3 footer for bogey on the par 5 12th, after a great flop from 30 meters on the other tee box. My game came back in time and I managed to play to my handicap with an 88. It was a great feeling, especially for me, to come back after my first experience and win the battle with the course.

If I sound like I am marketing myself, that’s because I am. I don’t usually have good games so when I do, I’d like to blow my own trumpet a bit since I know it’s not going to last long…at least to the next game, when I would probably blow up with a 100 and chew on my putter grip again. Ah, how success so quickly leads to failure. Why do we even try??!

While the others might not have had so much success with the course, we’re willing to give it a 3, as it does have quite a fair bit of character.


KGPA has definitely moved up the ranks in our estimation. We came in here expecting a B-Grade course and we just chose it for the convenience. Fortunately, it was a lot better than what we expected and when I tapped in for Par on the last hole, we all looked at each other and nodded as if to indicate that we will be seeing this course again. While touted as the toughest course in Malaysia, I frankly found that it’s definitely negotiable by the longer hitter. In fact, I prefer this than constipated courses like Nilai Springs, Monterez and the stupid nameless Course in Seremban 3. KGPA is a pleasant surprise!

The good: Great location; course is full of character; well maintained greens and fairways; challenging rough; aesthetics, while lacking is made up with good features and design of holes.

The bad: Expensive, and probably not worth that much; service of caddy, while good, is offset by the facilities and not so masterful instructor; could be a tad bit difficult for the hacker.

The skinny: 25 of 40 divots (62.5%). KGPA is a go; but we caught it in great weather, so all things might change if the ground turns soggy. Don’t come running to Gilagolf with pitchforks if KGPA destroys your manhood as it once did mine!!

KGPA Score Card


KGPA Information


Bukit Kiara, Off Jalan Damansara
Peti Surat 1139, Jalan Pantai Baru,
59200 Kuala Lumpur.

Contact: +603-79573344

Fax: +603-79577821