Tribute To Slemat Rakisan – A Rare Breed Of Malay Sportsman, True Rugby Gentleman


I’m just lost for words Thursday night when I heard of the death of a role-model former Singapore rugby international and ex-Vice President of the Singapore Rugby Union (SRU).

Slemat Rakisan, a 57-year-old father of three, was dreadfully killed when a runaway tire from a trailer truck hit him on his head in a freakiest accident along the Kranji Expressway.

What a very sad day for Singapore sports!

He was a rare breed of Malay sportsmen from Saint Andrew’s School, who went on to great heights as an international oval-ball stalwart.

News of his dreadful death shocked the Singapore rugby fraternity as he was saluted as an international rugby role-model, who came from the rugby-fanatic Saint Andrew’s School, and excelled as a player, coach, referee, referee instructor and leading rugby administrator, internally and internationally.

Slemat was the Past President of the Singapore Society of Rugby Union Referees (SSRUR) and was one of two Singaporeans who served as Citing Commissioner (CC) with the Asian Rugby Union (ARU). He also served as Vice President of the Singapore Rugby Union (SRU).

Former Singapore Rugby Union (SRU) President Dr Chan Peng Mun wrote over Facebook: “A tragic and premature passing of a gentle rugby star. In the mid 90’s when rugby awoke from its slumber, he had put his shoulder to the wheel for rugby to gain momentum. Heaven welcomes a very able referee and rugby administrator.”


SNOC (Singapore National Olympic Council) Vice President & current President of the SRU Low Teo Ping saluted Slemat’s outstanding contributions: “His love for rugby went beyond playing the sport. He went on to administer, referee, coach and promote. Slemat will be missed. RIP.”

Ridzal Saat, the Rugby Services manager at World Rugby, the sport’s global governing body, described Slemat as an “extraordinary role model at rugby and football”.

He added: “I’m lost for words. He was very special in many ways. Whatever Slemat touched, just turned wonders. He was outstanding as a player, referee, referee instructor, SRU senior official and was faithful in his sports-community work at Yuhua Community Club at football and he even actively served at Jamiyah Singapore, too, to help the Muslim community.”

Funeral arrangements are being finalised by family, most likely Friday late afternoon.

RIP Slemat Rakisan.

My special tribute to a rugby gentleman:…/gentle-rugby-star-dies-in-tragic…/


Source: Suresh Nair

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