Perth, Australia: Golf is mourning the passing of Alan Murray, a prominent figure in the game for more than half-a-century.
Aged 79, Murray passed away peacefully following a lengthy battle with cancer.
As a professional player and then a coach, Australian-born Murray was well respected in the region.
During an illustrious playing career, Murray clocked up 76 victories around the world. Among the highlights were successes in the Australian PGA Championship in 1961, the French Open in 1962 and the Dunlop Invitational in Japan in 1963. He also won three Rolex Masters titles in Singapore.
It was in 1972 that he moved to Singapore to take up the position of Head Professional at the Singapore Island Country Club.
A year later he was a co-founder of the Singapore Professional Golfers’ Association (SPGA), an organisation for which he also served as President and became a Life Member.
In 2005, he was honoured with Lifetime Membership of the PGA of Australia.
Seven years earlier, Murray had co-founded Champions Golf in Singapore with his son, Matthew, and friends Garry Overy and Alex Tan.
“Alan was a very likeable person who helped Singapore golf a lot. Many golfers benefited greatly from his support,” current SPGA President M. Murugiah was quoted as saying by the Straits Times.
“He was a big supporter of the SPGA and although he was ill, he attended our AGM (annual general meeting) last year. He was a wonderful guy. We will miss him a lot.”
Former national golfer and Putra Cup winner Phua Thin Kiay, a fellow co-founder of the SPGA, added: “I was just 14 when I first saw him play and remembered him as a hell of a golfer. More than that, he was a good boss whom I had the honour and pleasure of becoming friends with.
“He was so generous as he helped many caddies turn pro by giving them free balls and coaching tips. Whenever we struggled to find funds for local tournaments, he would also make significant donations.”
His son, Matthew, said: “I hope my father will be remembered as someone who coached both beginners and pros, and someone who helped bring up the standard of local pro players and coaches in Singapore.”