Aditi Ashok made the world sit up and take note of women’s golf in India when she almost made it to the podium at the Tokyo Olympic Games last year.
A fourth-finish was a reward for her incredible consistency over four rounds and brought her recognition like never before. Her medal-miss was more of a talking point than her winning the 2016 Hero Women’s Indian Open here.
The Bengaluru-girl was back on the DLF Golf and Country Club course to win back the title - after her unsuccessful title-defence in 2017 - when the $400,000 event tees-off on Thursday.
“I think as a golfer, obviously I’ve changed a lot since I last played here in 2017. Like I felt I had a great short game when I used to play in India and then when I got to the LPGA, I realized everyone has a great short game. So I had to work at being even better at something that I was already good at, and same with putting and same with driving accuracy and so many other things. I feel like I’ve made them tighter and so, as a golfer, definitely better,” Aditi said.
Talking to Sportstar, Aditi described the course as one of the toughest on the ladies Tour. “Most courses where we play are narrow but the one here is far more challenging. Week after week we play on greens that are faster than what we see with our Bermuda grass in India. Here, the speed of the greens is certainly faster, even up to 10.5 on the stimpmeter. I am not sure. The course is playing increasingly longer and we all are prepared for it,” said Aditi, one of the contenders for the top prize of $60,000.
“One thing I’ve noticed about this event is, every year the winning score has gotten lower. So it’s not that you figure this course out once and you’re set because I feel like it keeps changing and players figure it out, too. So you kind of have to play better each year here,” she said.