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The Pun Hlaing Golf Club News May/June 2020

Updated: May 12, 2020

A word from Golf Director, Stephen Chick

I hope everyone and their loved ones have remained safe and free of COVID-19 which has swooped in an impacted most of our lives in some capacity in these recent times which have been most challenging. On a positive note this period has enabled us to complete the coring, fertilizing and topdressing of all 18 greens + practice greens and we will no longer be needing to close the course for 5 days in mid-May. The timing of this operation has worked perfectly as no sooner as we completed it was followed by natural rainfall which really is the perfect tonic to compliment the nutrients and ensure they’re flushed to the rootzones. Some further positive news for the Golf course is the addition of a new machine to our fleet which despite the current crisis and difficult times, this highlights the continual investment in to the maintenance of the Golf course which remains the highest of priorities for Yoma Land. This machine is for presenting the semi rough and some detail on this can be found below along with my tip for playing from the rough. So on behalf of everyone at the club we certainly look forward to welcoming you all back to enjoy Golfing again and will be communicating the new precautionary measures around the re-opening date very shortly.


Pro’s Tip when playing from the rough

First thing first, ASSESS the LIE of the BALL. The ball will likely either be sitting quite down in the turf which makes a good contact challenging and control of your ball a bigger challenge because grass will be between the clubface and the ball at contact, this reducing the friction, this reducing the amount of back spin one can produce which is what is needed for the ball to fly up and stop promptly on the green. So if you are playing long par 4 or par 5 and distance is required then a ball sitting down can be advantageous as this lie promotes forward/top spin. However, if your ball is sitting up on the top of tuft of turf and just begging for a sweet strike then this is slice of luck, but one to take advantage of and be sure to capitalise on and not swoop under it counting as an air-shot.

Ball sitting down in tall grass
Ball sitting up in tall grass

The key to a good contact for either of these lies is your clubheads ‘Angle of Attack’ or in other words, the descending of the blow.

So the swing tip and club choice advice is as follows;

When your ball is DOWN you need to hit DOWN and hard, thus a steeper angle of attack with full force will be required to get the ball out and forwards and be sure to anticipate more top spin than normal. Use an iron as irons naturally are better when needing to dig down and the more loft the better (7 iron or up), the less loft for the more brave and the higher risk of the turf snagging your club and causing it to turn over and produce a low hook. To help achieve a more downward descending angle of attack you can move your ball position back in your stance and favour more weight on your lead foot 60/40 (the foot closer to the target).


When your ball is sitting UP you need to hit UP (so the theme of advice is the same here), a shallow angle of attack ascending up on the ball will be the key not to swoosh under the ball and miss it completely (embarrassing). Use a wood for this as woods naturally produce a shallower angle of attack due to longer length of the club. If the ball is really sitting up high, even try using your driver, you may just surprise yourself. Of course if you are playing an approach shot to the green my advice is not to use a wood, so be sure to achieve a shallower attack on the ball and you can achieve this by positioning the ball more forwards (left) in your stance (right handed golfers) so the arc of the clubhead is travelling upward at impact after already passing the lowest point.

GOOD LUCK and if this fails, just hit your ball down the fairways!!

Above image providing a visual of the mentioned angle of attacks


A word on the Agronomy, U Zaw Min & Dan Green

U Zaw Min giving a thumbs-up of the new Toro 3100

Following on from the fairway verti-cutting we spiked the fairways with 6 inch tines to allow improved aeration and irrigation to penetrate to the rootzones prior to the heavy rains. This process will ensure our fairways are best equipped to handle the heavy rainfall.

The bi-annual coring was another success and timed to perfection as we moved the schedule more than once to accommodate the current situations at the time of COVID-19 lockdown, Thingyan holidays and a sign of an early change in the weather as the timing of this operation is essential because the process comes to fruition best when performed in the dry and followed by rain. The weather gods were on our side as this is exactly what unfolded, no sooner had we completed the coring the natural rainfall began. If you are not aware, this is essential to remove the thatch layer of stems, roots and debris which accumulate over time just below the surface level and would prevent the turfs ability to drain when excessive rains fall as the thatch would act as a sponge holding water. Also, this thatch would prevent the penetration of acceptable levels of irrigation that we do need to penetrate deeper to the rootzone including the prescribed chemical and fertiliser applications that we apply for health and strength. The benefits are endless and therefore we complete this twice per year and will repeat this operation again around the beginning of October.

As mentioned and scheduled we have received our new Toro 3100 Reelmaster machine which has allowed us to begin presenting each hole with a semi-rough perimeter stripe around each fairway. So there is not such a vast difference in playing your ball from the fairway and 1 yard off the fairway, as this can also be very penal to good shots because a bad lie in thick rough will present a very different challenge to the fairway or a semi-rough cut. (Refer to Steve’s tip above when playing from the rough)!

Toro 3100 Reelmaster in action on hole 17
The definition, from left to right; Fairway, semi-rough & rough

Finally, an advanced warning that some ugly sightings in the rough turf are ahead. As starting in May and then June we will begin to spray chemicals as part of a weed killing program, the results of killing the weeds will not be pretty for a month or two but once the Zoysia turf returns the end result will be much better than how the rough presents today. The two leaf types we will be targeting is the cow-grass which is quite common and torpedo grass, both pictured below.

Torpedo grass, the tall thick leaf
Cow grass, mixing in with the Zoysia

We thank you for your understanding when encountering the course after some of our maintenance programs but this is better than us closing the course like many courses do, but your satisfaction is equally important as we aim to maintain Pun Hlaing to the highest standards possible.



Matchplay Championship update; Matches will resume once possible and extensions will naturally be granted due to COIVID-19 restrictions + Save the date for 2020 Club Championships 5th & 6th December

Future Events

May / June

  • TBC

Hole in One (March & April)

  • Mr Han - hole #12

General Reminders

  • Early morning Tee off’s now start from 05:40

  • Hygiene best practices at all times (sanitise, social distance & repeat)

  • Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook & Instagram @punhlainggc


Thai Country Club Affiliate Member Access* from Yoma Central

Head of real estate at Yoma Land, Mr Stephen Purvis, has announced “in addition to the many superb privileges granted to buyers of luxury apartments at The Peninsula Residences Yangon, we are extremely pleased to be able to give affiliate member access to Bangkok’s premier golf course, the Thai Country Club. Owners of The Peninsula Residences Yangon will not only benefit from the full range of standard and a la carte services, for which The Peninsula Residences are famous, but they will also get priority service at The Peninsula hotels all over the world and discounted rates at The Peninsula Hotel Yangon.” The Residences are due to complete at the end of 2021.

Thai Country Club was developed as one of the finest golf clubs in Asia and opened to the golfing world in December 1996. The golf course was designed to United States Golf Association specifications by Dennis Griffiths.

The 7,097-yards course was first seriously tested during the 1997 Asian Honda Classic won by Tiger Woods. This picturesque course is renowned for its immaculate conditions, a neo-classic design and its variety of holes, along with an abundance of water as well as fauna and flora – offering a constant challenge and hours of pleasure.

For enquiries, please contact:

Ms Charlotte Hnin Ei Win, Tel: +95 9 5153315, Email:

Ms Karin Hiramatsu, Tel: +81-3-5404-8570, Email:

* Please note special terms & conditions apply to Affiliate Member Access


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