GOLFING GREATS: IN THEIR OWN WORDS
Press Release, December 2009

Two visits to Mission Hills in China and one to Hong Kong were the highlights as top-class golf provided a welcome distraction to Jason’s day-job as a football host and producer.

During an extremely busy month, Jason reported from the 55th Omega Mission Hills World Cup near Shenzhen and was on-hand as the UBS Hong Kong Golf Club at Fanling unfolded for the 51st time.

At both events, Jason recorded in-depth interviews for his new series, ‘Golfing Greats: In Their Own Words’, which airs on the Golf Channel on Astro in Malaysia.

On November 11th ahead of the Hong Kong Open, Jason sat down with 2-time Major champion, Mark O’Meara. On November 28th, Jason spoke to 20-year-old prodigy Rory McIlroy and his Ireland teammate Graeme McDowell after they finished their third rounds at the Omega Mission Hills World Cup.

O’Meara and McIlory are the second and third installments in ‘Golfing Greats’ after Jason interviewed Greg Norman – also at Mission Hills, back in July – for the inaugural episode, which aired on November 29th.

“It was fantastic to meet and interview two excellent players at different ends of their careers,” Jason said.

“Mark O’Meara won two Major titles almost a dozen years ago and is now in his early 50’s, playing the Champions Tour, while Rory McIlroy is only 20 years old but already in the top-10 and tipped to challenge Tiger Woods at the very top of golf.”

O’Meara, a long-time buddy of Woods, is known as one of the nice guys of the sport and he didn’t disappoint.

“What a genuinely charming and sincere man,” Jason said. “I’ve met many athletes over the years but he was right up there with ones that left the best impression on me.

Rory was friendly too… you can see why he’s already so popular around the world. Ireland finished in a tie for second at he World Cup and Rory will be a big hit when he joins the PGA Tour in 2010.”

Also at Mission Hills, Jason interviewed PGA Commissioner Tim Finchem on November 13th during a visit to China and chatted with Woods’ swing coach, Hank Haney on November 26th. He also did a feature on outrageous Englishman Ian Poulter who launched his clothing line at Mission Hills and caught up with established PGA Tour players, Stuart Appleby and Robert Allenby, representing Australia.

Back in his base in Kuala Lumpur, Jason continued to anchor and serve as executive producer of the popular Astro football show, FourFourTwo, and was co-host for the annual Asian Football Confederation Awards at the Shangri-la Hotel on November 24th. The AFC’s night-of-nights was broadcast ‘live’ around Asia on Astro, ART and Al Jazeera.

“It was a huge honour to be asked and effectively represent Australia and I enjoyed working alongside Asha Gill, who’s one of Malaysia’s best known presenters,” Jason said. “It tied in nicely with our FourFourTwo show because we had AFC President Mohamed Bin Hammam as our studio guest the previous week.”

And Jason’s former base of Singapore was another of the stops on his itinerary as he hosted the annual Swissotel The Stamford Vertical Marathon: an event in which competitors scale the 73 storeys of Southeast Asia’s tallest hotel that Jason has fronted since 2002.

Germany’s Thomas Dold, the world number one of stair-racing, successfully defended his title, while Jason’s friend, Pedro Pinto Ribeiro, the three-time champion from Macau, finished second.

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