Bond over a day of golf

Mr Gurdev Singh (above, first from left) at last year's Integration Cup. Mr Dicky Goh and Mr Singh believe the tournament is a good platform to bring the Indian and Singaporean communities together.

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Island Country Club's (SICC) New Course is probably one of the most prestigious and challenging courses in the country.

It gives golfers an opportunity to test their skills against a sand-based course that meanders and ripples through rainforests, bunkers and water hazards. It's also the setting for the Integration Cup 2013, presented by UBS, which will be held on July 30.

The tournament was launched last year by tabla! and Tamil Murasu to bring together the Indian and Singaporean golfing community for a day of fun and entertainment. A total of 135 golfers took part in the inaugural tournament, most of whom are returning this year with the intent of improving their scores and bonding over food and drinks.

Mr Dicky Goh, a managing consultant who participated in the tournament with his wife last year, said the golf tournament's intention of gathering the Non-resident Indian community, the local Indians and Singaporeans together was noteworthy.

"I especially like the idea of including the partners/spouses for dinner, to further the integration among the better halves of the community," Mr Goh said.

Another participant, managing director at Mapletree Media T. Shanmugaratnam, agreed with Mr Goh and said: "It is a good event for creating social integration between Singaporeans and non-Singaporeans or new citizens, especially Indians in Singapore. It was a fun day."

Mr Shanmugaratnam is participating in the event this year as well.

Another returning participant is CEO of Property-Links Services Mr Gurdev Singh.

Mr Singh said even though the aim of the tournament was integration, the fact that the tournament is being held at the New Course is an added incentive to participate.

"The course is wonderful and challenging. I enjoy playing there. Bonding with old and new friends is an added bonus," he said.

The New Course, a favourite of golfers, is sand-based and boasts a state-of-the-art drainage system that allows play to resume within 20 minutes after a downpour.

The course was originally opened in 1970. It was then redesigned in 2002 by British Open winner Peter Thomson and officially opened by former prime minister Goh Chok Tong.

It's a par-72 course that stretches almost 7,000m and has several holes alongside the Peirce Reservoir.

The golf tournament is being organised together with Golf Digest magazine. It'll give you a chance to win a Jaguar for a hole-in-one.