For those who keep pointing to S.S.P. Chowrasia’s barren run since that historic moment at the Indian Masters almost two years ago, the wiry Kolkatan has this to say: “Perseverance comes from a strong will.”
The battle with form and injury firmly behind him, it is now a wait for that “elusive week” that will turn things around. Chowrasia could well turn the corner at the Classic Golf Resort (CGR) when he tees off today at the PGTI Tour Championship, featuring the elite 60 of the domestic circuit.
“It was an intense struggle with the driver and in Europe if your driving goes awry, you don’t stand a chance,” said the 31-year-old, among the fistful of Indians who enjoy full playing rights on the European Tour.
“After the wrist injury last year, I altered my swing and the benefits have started to show,” he said. Coupling this with a soaring confidence level can yield imminently desirable results and an armed Chowrasia is ready to prove that the triumph at the Delhi Golf Club in February last year wasn't a flash in the pan. “Detractors aren’t an issue, I have the ability to silence them,” he said in a matter-of-fact tone.
The positives this year may have been far and few but Chowrasia has drawn heavily from them, be it the T22 in last month’s UBS Hong Kong Open or the T21 at Munich’s BMW International Open in June (his best finish this year).
Playing the practice round on Tuesday added to the feel-good factor and had him gushing over the course. “It may not be apparent but the greens are lightening quick, quite like in Europe.”
Known for its openness, the CGR is a haven for long-hitters but this time the contest could even out.
“Unlike the SAIL Open (in March), the rough's down and this means that shorter hitters too can strike the ball without fear," he said.
Amidst the talk of near-perfect conditions, came words of caution. “The headwind could prove to be a major factor,” warned Gaganjeet Bhullar. Though satisfied with the turf on offer, the gusts were not to his liking.
Starting March, a whirlwind six months saw him add several firsts to his name, but since the DLF Masters triumph in September, the success meter has lost pace. The 22-year-old remains unperturbed. “That’s golf for you. Barring my putting, I fine,” he smiled.