Long before Sunday happened, Shiv Kapur had planned his yearend getaway. The rigours of the tour take a toll on the body and mind anyway, for Shiv it was the added burden of a prolonged barren run.
Sylvan surroundings beckoned him to stop and ponder. The idea was to stay away from golf but even while sprawled by the seashore, the mind would have reflected on a tag that's stayed with him for seven years. After all, the win at the Volvo Masters of Asia in Thailand is but a mere speck now.
Perhaps, it was the inability to put together four rounds of solid golf or even intense self-criticism, which added to the pressure – he is still unable to place a finger on, but that's in the past. "The monkey off his back", he will look ahead with renewed hope as he tries to replicate the success on bigger platforms outside home shores.
"You play sports to win, and that's the way it happened," he said after lifting the Shubhkamna Champions' silverware at the Noida Golf Course on Sunday.
Task accomplished, the prospect of putting his feet up came to the forefront again, but along with it was the eagerness to get back to the practice greens. "The holiday will not be long now that I feel I'm in the groove."
Shiv ended with a three-shot cushion but in his hour of glory he did not forget to mention overnight leader Daniel Chopra's contribution. "I grew up idolising him and a few tricky shots I played today were in fact taught by him.
Two adrift of Chopra at the start of the day, Shiv knew birdies were what he needed as "Daniel would keep coming at him".
Not only did he go past Chopra before making the turn, birdies on the 14th and 15th signalled his superiority. He was the target of some "friendly" sledging towards the end --- "let's see if we can make your hands tremble", were Chopra's words, but Shiv withstood the test.
"I've got more patient, probably it has come with my receding hairline," he said amidst peals of laughter.