Papwa / Golf’s Lost Leg­end

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - The Golf Life -

he story of the late Papwa Sew­golum, along­side cricketer Basil D’Oliveira prob­a­bly the most prom­i­nent sport­ing vic­tim of apartheid, is hav­ing an­other re­vival, some 52 years af­ter he fa­mously stood out­side in the rain at Dur­ban Coun­try Club to col­lect his Natal Open tro­phy. Nov­el­ist and short story writer Max­ine Case is the lat­est author to look at his life story, which had so much prom­ise while he was al­lowed to com­pete against white golfers in the 1960s, and ended so sadly af­ter he was banned by the gov­ern­ment.

Ten years ago Christo­pher Ni­chol­son, a high court judge, pro­duced an ex­cel­lent study of Papwa in his book, Papwa Sew­golum / From Pariah to Leg­end. How­ever, that book wasn’t met with much en­thu­si­asm by Papwa’s de­scen­dants. His son, Ra­jen, did not at­tend the launch of the book at Dur­ban CC in protest at what he con­sid­ered to be defam­a­tory pas­sages about Papwa’s per­sonal life.

Ra­jen, how­ever, was present when the new book was un­veiled at the Golf Hall of Fame Mu­seum in the Cape Town Water­front. Again, as was the case 10 years ago, there’s talk of nan­cial back­ers get­ting Hol­ly­wood to make a movie about Papwa. The new ap­proved book costs R250, while Ni­chol­son’s can be bought for R150. – Stu­art McLean

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