Golfers to explore other avenues after Cable Beach course closure

By RENALDO DORSETT Sports Reporter rdorsett@tribunemedia.net The new $2-billion Baha Mar project has already altered the infrastructure of the Cable Beach area with one of the most glaring changes set to take place at the most populated golf course in Nassau which is also used by local players. Baha Mar is set to close the Cable Beach Golf course in its entirety after recently operating with just nine holes, leaving local players and the Bahamas Golf Federation (BGF) with few options. James Gomez, president of the BGF, said the federation continues to explore a number of alternative options for its members which includes travel abroad and to the Family Islands. "The federation met recently to set its agenda for the year and one of the things we are going to do is to find ways for the members of the federation to continue on with tournaments and it will be done throughout the Bahamas, in Abaco and Grand Bahama for the most part. "For the junior programme, in addition to the out islands, it will extend to tournaments in Florida so we will just have to find a way to fund it in the interim. We are poised to approach the local golf courses to facilitate us as best as they can for our tournaments. We are hopeful but we can't say for sure that they will support the idea but we will see if it can work. "Our contingency plan would be for golfers to continue to work on their game right here at the driving range at the Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre. We also have a few holes open where people can continue to play, however, on a limited basis. We are still trying to develop the golf course at the sporting complex." Among the clubs the BGF will petition include the One and Only Ocean Club, Lyford Cay and Albany. The first event on the federation's agenda since the venue issue will be the Johnnie Walker Invitational. "I would suspect a number of the clubs would travel. There are trips planned to the family islands and also one of the local clubs will be going during the Easter weekend to compete in Canada so we have persons making other arrangements. They may not be able to play on a daily or weekly basis but, at the same time, we will get out there to get the spirit of golf going in the Bahamas, especially as it relates to us participating in the Caribbean Senior and Junior Golf Championships," Gomez said. "We are about to set the Johnnie Walker tournament which will be our major tournament for this year and that is the event we have pegged to make our formal petition to the clubs."


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