Munazza Shaheen – Pakistan Golf’s first lady chief referee
LAHORE – Pakistan has always produced talent even in absence of no prior models or patterns. The thirst to add value to the system has given rise to the intent of filling gaps, exactly as the first Lady Chief Referee of Pakistan did and brought pride to the world of Ladies Golf in Pakistan.
Munazza Shaheen, the first lady chief referee, broke the glass ceiling by choosing to build her career around being a ‘Rules Official’ for golf, which was men’s territory since long. After she cleared the Level-I exam with 96% pass marks, she refereed many prestigious golfing events including 4th PGA Ladies Amateur Golf Championship, 3rd PGA Junior Girls Match in Lahore, 1st KPGA Soni Wali Cup Ladies Amateur Golf Championship in Peshawar and the 1st PGA Ghazala Ansari Challenge Cup Ladies Amateur Golf Championship in Lahore.
In addition, a special mention of the 1st Kashmir Day Golf Match held in Islamabad in which she earned the distinction of becoming the first ever Pakistani lady to referee a match in which both men and women golfers participated. With this, the crowning achievement, to date, has been the honour that the PGF bestowed upon her by appointing her as the Chief Referee of the recently-concluded 5th PGF International Ladies Amateur Golf Championship held in Islamabad.
As all eyes were on her to perform at the 5th PGF International Ladies Amateur Championship, where international teams were invited, she rose to the occasion and set the yard stick in applying the ‘Rules of Golf’ as effectively as it was required. There were two disqualifications including the disqualification of an international player for not following the rules in submitting scorecards, she took no pressure and never had a second thought for taking the right approach and showed no leniency.
Many officials, club secretary and tournament director praised her professional attitude and laser focused aptitude to justify her selection for being the Chief Referee of such a significant event in Ladies Golf. “The lady chief referee gave the decisions by the book,” said Rae Vadee, President Ladies Golf Thailand. “I found the lady chief referee very confident and she knew her job very well,” stated Mr. Zahid Arbab, President FGA.
Her future endeavors are promising and assuring as she applies for the R&A Level-II Exam to be held this year. She vows to hone her skills and keep adding the certifications and exams successions in order to become the full scale Rules Official. It goes to prove that Pakistan is not short of promising capacities. With such brilliant ladies coming forward showing their excellent skills, the ladies golf is progressing towards new horizons!