Vivek Gupta (17) entered golf greens just to earn pocket money. On seeing the growth of many caddy-turned-golfers, including his uncle Harinder Gupta, his perspective towards the greens changed. And whenever he got time from the job of a caddy, Vivek, son of hawker, started investing it on learning the nitty-gritty of the sport.
Today, he is among the country’s best junior amateur golfers. Recently, he won a title in the Indian Golf Union Feeder Tour in Delhi and finished runnerup twice in Kapurthala and Lucknow.
(Golfer Vivek Gupta with his trophies at the CGA golf course, Chandigarh.)
“As of now, I am placed second in the tour and three more tournaments are left. The top three will get a chance to represent the country,” says Vivek, who works as a part-time coach at the Chandigarh Golf Association (CGA) Range and at times doubles up as caddy to earn more.
“My next tournaments are in far away Mumbai, Kolkata and Coimbatore. Meeting the travelling and others expenses is the next big target for me. Hopefully, I will be able to generate that much funds, otherwise I will have to skip the events,” he adds.
Vivek hails from Kishangarh, a village adjoining the Chandigarh Golf Club, and because of the proximity to the club, it houses a number of caddies. “In Kishangarh, the kids grow up listening the golf tales and Chandigarh Golf Club is the most sought-after destination for youngsters to earn pocket money. For some, it is even a way of helping their families to make ends meet,” says Vivek, who decided to leave studies after he cleared the Class-10 board exams with 58% marks last year, so that he can devote all the time to the sport.
“As a caddy, I gathered decent knowledge of the sport and that helped me get a part-time job of a coach at the CGA Range. Now, whatever money I earn from the coaching and as a caddy, I spend it on my training so that I can realise my dream of becoming a successful professional golfer one day,” he signs off with a confidence of making it big some day.