Having lived in a 10x10 shanty near the Bombay Presidency Golf Club (BPGC) at Chembur all his life, golf automatically became his first love.
Education or golf?
Mane had to choose between education and golf early in his poverty-stricken childhood and eventually chose the latter. At the age of 12, he joined as a forecaddie (one who does not carry the golfer’s bag but instead rides on the back of the golf cart or runs ahead of the cart on every hole) to earn some money.
He picked up some of the finer nuances of the game and became caddie at 16, before playing amateur golf at 21 and finally turned Pro in 2010.
Mane’s best performance has been a second-place finish at the PGTI Feeder Tour event at the Madhuban Meadows Golf Course in Karnal, in May this year.
Needless to say, with a wife and four kids to support, his financial struggles continue as the money he makes from coaching kids and playing on the Pro tour is not good enough.
“I was unable to complete my schooling and began working at the golf course. I have lived most of my life on the streets, standing besides crazytraffic, stray chickens, dogs and chaos. I don’t want my kids to live the way I did. I hope to give them a better life with some good outings on the Pro tour,” Mane told MiD DAY yesterday, after a poor start of six-over par after Round One at the Crompton Greaves Open at BPGC yesterday.
“I’ve started badly and am in 99th place now. For me, it’s not about winning; it’s about earning. I don’t have a choice. I must play well to finish in the Top 50 to earn some prize money,” he signed off.