Ashok Bakshi Image Credit: Gulf News archives

Dubai: Amateur golfer and former Emirates Golf Club captain Ashok Bakshi died of a suspected heart attack on Wednesday, aged 75.

The Indian national had been about to participate in the Omega Dubai Desert Classic Pro-Am for Team Gulf News Three, when he collapsed on the driving range. Paramedics were quickly on the scene and he was airlifted to Rashid Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead. The pro-am was cancelled and the course closed as a mark of respect.

A statement from event organisers golf in DUBAi read: “The afternoon pro-am of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic was cancelled at 2.20pm [on Wednesday] following the tragic death of Ashok Bakshi, a founding member and past captain of Emirates Golf Club, who suffered a cardiac arrest while warming up for the pro-am on the driving range at Emirates Golf Club.

“Mr. Bakshi collapsed on the practice range early this afternoon and was immediately attended to by the European Tour’s chief medical officer, Dr. Roger Hawkes, as well as the local paramedic team from the Dubai Corporation Ambulance Service, who are based at Emirates Golf Club for the duration of the tournament.

“After initial stabilisation on the practice range, Mr Bakshi was transferred by air ambulance to Rashid Hospital, where he had further treatment but unfortunately passed away.

“The European Tour, in conjunction with tournament promoter Golf in Dubai and Emirates Golf Club, took the decision to close the course, as well as all golfing facilities at the club as a mark of respect to Mr Bakshi, who was a hugely popular figure throughout the golfing community in Dubai.”