11 June 2018
Jumping Into the Top 100
Since winning the Indonesian Golf Tour series for the first time, and also being the only amateur to win an IGT series, Naraajie Emerald R.P. continues to make headlines. The 18-year-old managed to break into the Top 100 of the World Amateur Golf Ranking. As of May 26, Naraajie sat at 72nd on the ranking. He is the only Indonesian player to ever make the WAGR Top 100.
Naraajie's biggest point contributions in 2018 came from his participation in four professional tournaments which ended with three top-10 finishes. We spoke with the young amateur star about his game and its improvement, his involvement with professional tournaments, and his future goals.
You have broken into the WAGR Top 100. How does that make you feel?
I am not very focused on the WAGR. I heard this news from some people who say that I managed to get in the Top 100. I just concentrate on golf and what I wanted to achieve in the matches and make something different in the game.
When did you think that your game really improved?
Early last year. I got more practice. Then, I often watched golf tournaments and saw the good players. It turned out to motivate me.
Since last year, you’ve been playing in the Indonesian Golf Tour often. Does competing in the IGT also help to improve your ability?
Yes, it does. Playing on IGT makes me more confident.
What’s the difference between playing in professional tournaments and amateur events?
The experience is a little bit different. In a pro tournament, I have more motivation to be able to outperform the pros, while in amateur tournaments, I still have the desire to win. However, in terms of atmosphere, playing in the IGT that is held every month makes me more adaptable so I’m comfortable to play. So, when playing in the ADT or tournaments that are a level above the ADT, I do not feel nervous or anything because I'm used to it. I can keep my game rhythm. Meanwhile, because the amateur tournaments are not routine every month and have a different atmosphere, they require me to adapt to the new atmosphere.
You finally won an IGT Series. What are your next goals?
I certainly want to win more in pro tournaments. My target is the ADT. However, to play in the ADT, I have to improve my game because the level and skill of its competitors are higher.
When did you start to play golf?
I started playing golf in 2008, but it got serious in 2013 when I won in the National Championships. I just think that I have something with my talent, I know I can be good in golf. With this victory, I got a chance to play in the Indonesian Masters 2014.
Do you think about turning pro?
I think it’s too soon to decide that. I still focus on my amateur career and also my education. I still have not achieved much in the amateur arena and that's what I'm pursuing to this day. Maybe after the age of 20, I will start to think about a professional career.