Ross Tan is golf's new president
Veteran sports official Low opts out because of heavy work schedule
He was the first of the two candidates to make his presentation.
Then, while it was his competitor's turn to deliver his manifesto to the governing council, Ross Tan returned to the holding area looking calm but quietly confident.
His confidence was explicable - he had done his homework and was rewarded when he was named the new president of the Singapore Golf Association (SGA) at its annual general meeting at Singapore Island Country Club (Bukit location) last night.
And there was some drama when what was initially billed as the first presidential contest in the association's 55-year history, between Tan (left) and veteran sports official Low Teo Ping, turned out to be a no-contest, with the latter withdrawing at the start of his presentation to the election panel.
It was understood that he was asked to complete his pitch, though.
Nonetheless, Tan still had to garner a majority vote from the 13-member council in order to be elected, which he ultimately achieved.
"I came into this well prepared and the manifest I presented was true and genuine," said the new SGA chief.
"Everything I wrote was from the heart and I'm quite sure a lot of the governing council trusted and believed in my sincerity.
"I respect Teo Ping for his commitment to sports and he had a good reason as to why he withdrew, which I respect."
Low explained that his withdrawal stemmed from the fact he felt that he would be incapable of addressing the immediate issues required of the new president, given his hectic schedule in the coming months.
The 71-year-old is not only Singapore's chef de mission for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, but is also president of Singapore Rugby Union, which requires him to be in London in September for talks regarding the Singapore Sevens.
The first thing on Tan's to-do list is to complete the line-up of his executive board within a fortnight.
The 59-year-old businessman explained: "First, I have to fill up the vacant seats in the executive board.
"Kong (Choong Soon) is the new VP and we also have Lee Lian Hong from Tanah Merah and Andrew Lim from SICC, but there are eight or nine available seats in total (Lyn Sen and Goh Kui Hwa are also members).
"I told them (the governing council) that I was going to take golf in my hands and work together with the fraternity to move it forward, because it is not something that can be done alone.
"Without good board members working together, I don't think my vision can be fully realised because it's not a one-man show, but a team effort."
Meanwhile, outgoing president Bob Tan backed his successor to take golf forward.
"He's obviously passionate, he's been the captain of Jurong Country Club and is very active, so I think he is the right candidate to drive the association forward," Bob told The New Paper.
"It's going to take the effort of the whole team, but many of them are very active within their circles and I'm very confident they can take it to the next level, although there's a lot to do."
Hats off to Low for making right decision
Four months ago, Ross Tan told me over lunch of his intention to stand for the Singapore Golf Association's president's post.
Listening to the Jurong Country Club captain, I was overwhelmed by his sincere intention, sheer drive and strong passion to take local golf forward.
Subsequently, when I heard that leading sports official Low Teo Ping (right) was tossing his name into the hat, I was taken aback.
Since then, I have been discouraging Low to stand, purely because he already has his plate full.
And last night, when Low used the same excuse to withdraw from the contest, it was par for the course.
"It is going to be a hectic four months from now, with the Olympics, Rugby Sevens and other responsibilities," he said.
"The new golf president has some urgent work to do, especially in some reorganisation, implementing immediate plans and revisiting the functions of the secretariat.
"I cannot attend to these matters immediately, so it's best that I opt out," said a sporting Low.
Low made this intention clear from the onset last night to the selection panel, some of whom wanted him to reconsider.
But although he still had to present his manifesto, he reinforced his decision to pull out of the contest.
It was a magnanimous gesture by Low, who leaves next week for the Olympic Games in Rio as Singapore's chef de mission. In fact, the former sailing president who is rugby's chief, Sentosa Golf Club president and a board member of Sports Singapore, had displayed magnanimity earlier.
When he was alerted that Tan had not submitted his manifesto with his application as stated in the rules, and that it was up to him and the governing council to accept Tan's nomination, Low did not make a fuss.
No doubt, Tan later clarified that the governing council had given him prior permission to present his manifesto on election day.
Last night, Low congratulated Tan on his appointment and stated that he was looking forward to golf's drive forward.
All's well that ends well, and it was a win-win situation for golf, and sport, in Singapore.