Peter is a sports writer at the Bay of Plenty Times

New book is a valuable asset to golf literature

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FINE READ: My Life in Golf - Inspiring Kiwi Stories by Heather Kidd. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
FINE READ: My Life in Golf - Inspiring Kiwi Stories by Heather Kidd. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

Tauranga-based author Heather Kidd has penned a fine addition to New Zealand golf literature with My Life in Golf - Inspiring Kiwi Stories.

The impressive, hardback edition is the ideal coffee table staple for golf fans.

It features inspiring stories of people who overcame cancer, loss of a child and a crippling road accident and many more about how golf is so much more than a game.

Kidd's goal was to write a book that demonstrated the incredible breadth of golf and how it touches lives in many more ways than people might imagine.

"My subjects were carefully chosen, and not because of their golfing prowess, but because they represent the wonderful diversity of the sport - administrators, golf club managers, coaches, players, a golf tour operator, golf course architects, golf course owners, a sports broadcaster and a golf club collector, to mention but a few," Kidd said.

"Truly wonderful was time spent with Bob Glading just a few weeks prior to his death (aged 94), when he revealed the rather humble circumstances of his upbringing, and how his introduction to golf at the age of 10 was the catalyst for a life that was bigger, brighter and undoubtedly better than what his parents had.

"It was never up for debate that My Life in Golf should include Sir Bob Charles.

"His generosity of spirit and willingness to share his huge knowledge of the game have affected many of the people who feature in this book, including Michael Campbell, Sir Michael Hill, John Darby, Brendan Telfer, Barry Johnston and the late Bob Glading."

There is a chapter on Mount Maunganui teenager Bailey Smith, who is on a golf scholarship at Southeastern Louisiana University.

The 19-year-old talks about his obsession to become a professional golfer. It is outlined in a diary he began when he was 10, with the first entry after playing in the Top of the Harbour competition held at Omanu Golf Club.

Smith said he refused to contemplate failure.

"Everything comes down to work ethic. If you work hard enough, you can pretty much do anything...I've seen people playing the same sport as I am making millions and living a great lifestyle, and I'm determined to do that."

Kidd's love for the game of golf and its rich traditions comes through strongly in each of the 21 personalities profiled.

"Golf is such a great game, wickedly difficult to master - if indeed you ever do - but the variety of courses available to play, the landscape in which they sit, the characters who are involved in the sport ... there is such a wealth of inspirational tales to be told," she said.

(In stores now, RRP $39.99)

- Bay of Plenty Times

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