Qadeer Ahmad: Golf courses are marked with a number of hazards and sometimes while playing you might land into some.
But there is one hazard, I can never forget. It took place about 35 years ago in Malacca when Kelab Golf Negara Subang went down to play Tasek Utara Golf Club in an inter-club match.
There I was standing in front of the 5th hole tee-box on a sunny afternoon. I was already visualising how to carry my tee-shot at this par-4 hole’s sloping fairway which had a drain hazard cutting across it.
The air was still and you could feel the sweat creeping out of your pores. Otherwise I was oblivious to everything around just concentrating on the challenge ahead.
Then without any warning, there was a very loud whiplash sound, more like a deafening boom. The next thing I knew, all of us on that tee found ourselves on the ground.
Behind us we could see a huge tree charred beyond recognition. Lightning had struck and we felt the ground tremble under us for a split second.
Whether it was from the lightning shock we took a dive or we were thrown, I cannot recall until today.
Within a minute or tw
o, from sunny afternoon, the skies opened up and we were drenched while still on the ground.
Suddenly, we came to our senses and as panic took control we got to our feet. Leaving our golf bags and clubs behind, we got a heck out of there. Scrambling like rabbits, we cut across three fairways to the safety of the clubhouse.
After a while we overcame that nervy frightful experience and to find that we were so near to disaster. We were so lucky not to have been struck by the lightning bolt which struck so close to where we were standing. It was really too close for comfort.
Today I am still playing golf but after that harrowing experience, whenever I notice dark clouds, I will refuse to tee-off.
And I’ve added lightning as a golf hazard to my game.