Rashid Khan keeping himself busy with martial arts, PlayStation

The Indian golfer does miss going out to play at the course or competing at events, but admits “it’s not in our hands.”

Rashid Khan... “The safety and health of the players cannot be compromised and we need to be aware of the current situation.”   -  Getty Images

His eyes were transfixed on Tokyo 2020 but all India’s top-ranked golfer Rashid Khan can do now is practise martial arts to keep himself fit and use the precision of his fingers to play the Play Station, as his wrists are at rest for the time being. He is also playing with his 15-month nephew, which is, for him, the best part of being at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I am busy with PS4, fitness through martial arts (I follow Billy Blanks on YouTube) and then there is my nephew, who is just 15 months. This takes up a good part of my day,” Rashid said when asked how he is adjusting to a life beyond suitcases and hotel rooms. To be sure, he does miss going out to play at the course or competing at events, but admits “it’s is not in our hands.”

“Golf is not like other games, but the key is to stay strong mentally and to stay fit. That’s what I am doing. Anyway, I have not been the kind to practice on the course each and every day.”

Mentally prepared

There is no clarity on the Olympics. “No one is sure about the situation, but I am keeping myself mentally ready for the Olympics and the events in the run up,” said Rashid.

How is he keeping fit? “Billy Blanks is good. What he does is called Tae Bo and it is a total martial art technique and helps total body fitness with martial arts. He has thousands of followers from all over [the world].”

As for staying strong mentally, “There is nothing more relaxing than playing with my 15-month old nephew and he is a delight. I love that time. When I am on Tour, I have no time for these things, so might as well make the most of it now.”

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Rashid’s last participated competition was the Bandar Malaysia Open where he was T-31. He has played three events in 2020 on the Asian Tour and has two top-10s — sixth in Hong Kong and T-8 in Singapore Open — both events having been held in January. “I feel the Asian Tour was absolutely right in cancelling or postponing many events and the Tour has been giving us the information on that,” he said.

“The safety and health of the players cannot be compromised and we need to be aware of the current situation.”

For the present, the Asian Tour has either cancelled or postponed events until the end of April. Many of the events will be re-scheduled when the situation improves.