The first Indian professional golfer to win the prestigious Indian Open, Ali Sher on Monday walked down memory lane, ruminating about his early playing days when golf was considered a "boring" game for the "oldies" and clubs used to made of "wood".
Sher, who along with two other Indian winners C Muniyappa (2009) and Vijay Kumar (2002), launched the Indian Open trophy for the 50th edition of the tournament, said Indian golf has come a long way since then.
"It has been 50 years and it is great for the Indian golfers. I remember, it was PG Sethi who was the first amateur to win the title in 1965. There was a big gap after that, before I won it in 1991," Sher said.
"At that time, golf was not so popular. It was considered a boring game for the oldies. But slowly there was awareness and now for the past five years, the youngsters are playing well and with Indians winning now, there is an awareness for golf in India."
The diminutive Indian had broken the foreign stranglehold in 1991 when he first shot a 67 to take the lead with the help of a hole-in-one on the 184-yard seventh on the second day and then finished with a dramatic birdie on the final hole to trigger a revolution in Indian golf.
A caddie at the Delhi Golf Club, Sher had scripted a story which only grew more memorable when he repeated his feat in 1993, beating another Indian Feroz Ali by one stroke.
"I used to go with my father to the club and got interested. There were no clubs at that time, we used to make clubs and drivers with wood and play with the stick. Now there are metal drivers. Now getting equipment has also become easy, balls are of very good quality," continued Sher, who has the best score of nine-under."