India has produced a number of golfers, with the sport recently finding some promising traction in the country. Seventeen-year-old budding golfing star Aadil Bedi is the latest to join the list with heaps of potential under his belt, aiming to take Indian golf to a newer realm.
He may only be 17-years-old, but he’s already put together an impressive resume that is gaining plenty of notoriety. At an age where most children are in school, Aadil, at 1o, was playing golf for Team India.
Aadil was inspired by his father, who he counts as his biggest support system in his golfing career. His father also caddies for his son on occasion, accompanies him to every tournament.
Besides golf, Aadil has a keen interest in all the sports – swimming, chess and skating but golf is what he is passionate about.
And his career is dotted with interesting milestones. Aadil, who took up Golf at the young age of 4, clocked 10000 hours of practice in 13 years, won 170 medals and trophies in 286 national and international tournaments across the globe.
Bedi is currently holding the sixth position in the 2018 IGU Merit List with 203 points. He is already making a smooth transition from the junior to the men’s category.
Also, he\'s the youngest Golfer to represent India at the upcoming prestigious Asian Games where he will have to overpower the challenge of 132 golfers, including 60 foreign golfers from 20 different countries.
We were fortunate to ask Aadil a few questions about his background, representing Asian games and much more. Let’s hope the youngster can reach even greater laurels in his career!
Check out the interview below:
What made you take up Golf as a profession?
My father was an addicted golfer. He used to go to golf every day in the evening to Fategarh Sahib 40 km from Chandigarh and I also accompany him most of the times for the cold drink and chips.
Slowly I developed my interest in the game at the age of 4. Then my father quit his own game and started planning and developing my game with the assistance of coaches and experts.
Initially, I used to practice golf at football ground behind my house at Fatehgarh Sahib, I would make a flag with an iron rod with mom’s dupatta
as a flag and hit sand wedges before my family finally shifted to Chandigarh and started practiced at CGA golf range Chandigarh.
Your long term and short term goals
My short term goal is to get fit and prepare well for forthcoming Asian games and Eisenhower cup this month at Jakarta Indonesia and Ireland.
My long-term goal is to play at PGA USA tour in the coming years. I have been playing golf in USA for the last 7 years. I understand their training and workout routine which I am following nowadays.
What would be your ultimate achievement?
Winning at Augusta Masters USA and Major tournament at PGA is my ultimate aim. Although, I started playing golf with my sheer love but now my mindset is changing with time. I am getting more aggressive with age and wanted to win at the highest level.
You are a part of Virat Kohli foundation, how does it felt to interact with Virat Kohli?
VIRUSHKA are an amazing family. I met them when they selected me for Indian Sports Honor in 2017. I personally met Virat and other team members of VKF.
They are totally professional and Virat is personally monitoring my progress in golf and in fitness. I am not only growing under their supervision but make my mind more professional in the golf and off the golf course.
How did you feel, when you were told of representing India in the Asian games?
In fact, I was not told to represent the country. I earned this spot through my hard work and clear the gruelling 6 days trials. Only top 15 amateurs were invited to play in trials and I was number 2 ranked players in the country. It\'s feeling very nice when I see India on my blue blazer. It was my childhood dream coming true.
How supportive was your school and what do you expect from the UCLA you have signed up?
I maintain the balance between study and golf very nicely. My school supports me a lot. My teachers send me coursework on email. And I study while playing golf. I scored 75 % in 11th grade and 78 % in 10th grade.
My game is ready for the professional circuit in India. If I don’t go to higher study in the USA next year after my 12 class from Vivek High School Chandigarh, I might turn professional. I have already signed by one University at the USA.
I will review my game after the Asian Games with my Dad then turn pro in January 2019. My next goal is Olympic 2020, where I have to be in top merit in Indian Professional circuit (PGTI)/ Asian Circuit.
Sooner you start more comfortable you become with time as I stopped playing junior circuit at age of 15 and started Men’s Division.
What is Aadil Bedi like, away from the Golf course?
I am very soft and friendly and mix up with everybody in the school. Once I am on the golf course, I treat it as my office and don’t talk and interact much.
I am learning professionalism from VKF team. In the school, I enjoy with my friends. Weekend movie and window shopping is my favourite with my classmates and my neighboured friends.
What is the most embarrassing thing that you have done on the Golf course?
I did not sign the scorecard and got disqualified once. In that match, I was winning after day 4. In the excitement when I shot under par first time in my life I forget to sign the card, this is the most embarrassing moment of my life.
What is that one element of your game that needs to be fine-tuned?
For golf, my parents have built up a hi-tech lab at Forest Hills golf club which includes trackman, Sam Putt Lab and another important sensor to keep an eye on my golf swing. My father taught a couple of courses to operate trackman and Sam putt lab from Netherland.
We give our input to my coach Mr Jesse Grewal at CGA golf Range on weekly basis and working on my game in a very scientific was as compared to non- scientific way earlier. My father and my coach is playing an important role to monitor my swing data on the computer now and keeping a record of every shot I am hitting on the range now.
ACCURACY IS WHAT I NEED TO IMPROVE WITH HIGH TECH GADGETS.
Have you been star struck by any celebrity?
I met Virat Kohli and he told me to respect my parents. The way he told me touched my heart.
Other than Golf, what other sport are you good at?
I play all sports at my school, which include cricket, handball, and Volleyball. I am like freewheel in the school, I fit in every team whenever someone absents from the team.
Have you ever felt like hero among others around you?
School gives me special recognition. Every time I win a trophy school gives me a special round of applause. This boosts my confidence. Now the media also give me some important. I feel honoured and thankful to God and parents for supporting me conditionally.
Do you agree with the saying that golf is for elite people?
In USA / Europe, it is still considered as rich man’s game as it requires a lot of money to travel. But once you gain the recognition it is a game of group with a lot of publicity, dignity and honour attached to this game.
How different is it to play Golf as an individual and as a team?
It is an individual sport but there are a couple of events when you are paired up for the honour of your countries like Euro Asia cup in pro event and Asian Games.
It is generally called a Gentlemen game and I learnt how to show sportsmen gesture with my teammates and fellow senior and junior players in both individual and team sports.