By James Ritchie

In late November 2022 Ramayah contacted me and asked if I could write his story.
I told him I would be honoured to do so and asked him to send me his CV, photos and all the news clippings, including the articles I wrote on him.
To proceed, I contacted the golfing fraternity including former PGA President Datuk Ramlan Harun and pro Barie Bluah I was told Ramayah was down with cancer and warded in the hospital,
When he called, it did not occur to me that Ramayah was ill! Or did he have a premonition of another obstacle in his illustrious journey as a professional golfer?
After all he had three close calls during his lifetime-an accidental shooting, a car accident and a plane crash!
I first met Ramayah when he as a 16 year old caddy with RSGC in 1973 when I was a reporter with NST.
His is the story of poor Indian parents who were employed as workers at one of Malaysian’s oldest golf courses.
I was 23 and an 11-handicapper but when I met Ramayah he was about to turn pro the following year in 1974.
 At RSGC Ramayah introduced me to the Yusof brothers Zainal Abidin, Sahabudin and Nazamudin and the elite golfing circle including the late V. Nellan.
As sportswriter, the Malay Mail sports editor Maurice Khoo, a single handicapper, allowed me to play in corporate pro-am events while keeping in touch with the golfing fraternity.
Through Ramayah’s influence and tips, my game improved by leaps and bounds and Champion of the three-day Malaysian intermediate Championship in Seremban in 1978, Malaysian Mass Media in Subang in 1980 and inaugural two-day Sarawak Tun Rahman Cup in Kuching in 1982.
After leaving for Kuching in 1981 we lost touch until I read that Ramayah was featured in an air crash in Subang airport in 1983.
At the last “Sports Flame” gathering at Concorde Hotel a few years ago, I met Ramayah and the local golf fraternity and he confirmed the golfer’s unique story.
 While most of the passenger made a quick departure from the downed aircraft, Ramayah was more concerned with his prized golf set.
Ramayah said: “Yes, I carried my golf bag slogging through the mud. Golf is my bread and butter.”
Yes, we need to pray for Ramayah in this time of spiritual need!
Ramayah—stay the course as there are only two more holes to go.
God Bless!!


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