Umhlali in the last decade has transformed itself from a smallish club to one of the biggest in the country in terms of membership and stature. It reminds me more than ever of George GC in the Garden Route, and there’s much in common too between Ballito and George, two of the fastest-growing towns in the country. Umhlali, like George, is popular with golfers and a highly efficient and enjoyable experience on a scenically attractive, flowing and challenging course of about 6000 metres that’s all about shot-making rather than big drives. Tree-lined holes put an emphasis on finding the fairway. Both are also superbly conditioned. Umhlali consistently offers some of the best greens of the KZN coastal courses in terms of pace and texture. George would love to have Umhlali’s impressive practice facilities. An excellent touch I noticed on my visit were the practice putting greens at both the first and tenth starting holes. Another observation: the tee box on the par-3 sixth is surely among the biggest in the country, 25 metres wide and as long again.