Sports

A fresh, stronger and eager Lahiri is all set to start PGA Tour next week

V Krishnaswamy Sept 23 | Updated on September 23, 2021

Anirban Lahiri   -  REUTERS

Having contracted Covid, he managed a punishing schedule even as many top stars lost their full playing rights.

Anirban Lahiri sounded fresh and was raring to go as he came off a well-deserved month-long break after a challenging season, both on and off the course. Having recovered from a tough season, and despite losing valuable time, tournaments and physical strength because of having contracted Covid, Lahiri did exceedingly to not just qualify for the Olympics, but also managed a punishing schedule and also kept his PGA Tour even as many top stars lost their full playing rights.

Lahiri recognises that the way he played towards the end of the season and even got into the play-offs after a long time, augured well for the coming year. He said, “I knew I was getting into my rhythm. So I want to continue with the same mindset. So, the key is to start this season in the same vein, albeit fresher, stronger, faster and I will be able to manage my schedule better and not have to wait till the last minute.”

Talking about the off-season, he said, “It has been a good month; a much-needed month which started off by taking some time off with the family to vacation. That was a first after a couple of years. It was probably what I needed after the hectic end to the schedule. Physically I found it myself quite drained and I think I played like seven out of nine weeks to finish the year. That included travel to Japan and back and the play offs,” said Lahiri, who begins his season next week from the Sanderson Farms Championship.

It was very challenging and a lot of things happened very quickly. Also the situation I was in - like what I need to do regarding my card; the Olympics; managing the travel and the fatigue and the energy levels. Frankly, there was a lot on my plate and I am quite pleased with the way I handled the pressure with covid situation. You know how challenging it can be for not fully exempt players, not knowing till the week whether you are into the tournament or not. So, I am glad I was able to do that and I had to dig deep. I am proud of how I managed that.”

Lahiri, who last won in 2015 at the Hero Indian Open and then made his move to the PGA Tour by the end of that year. He has been on it since then but is still looking for his first win on the PGA Tour.

He added, “I was totally spent every which way and all this happened within 3-4 months of having Covid. So the first part of the time in-between the seasons was spent in some family times, and some downtime and rest. The last two and a half weeks or so I have gotten back in the gym; have started working out a little bit more trying to work on endurance as much as possible. At the same time, I am trying to keep an eye on all my parameters and trying to follow post covid guidelines’. I am recovering my strength and have been in touch with my coach Vijay Divecha as well and just trying to get back into the same rhythm that I had found towards the end of the season last year.”

The Indian ace, who has now spent more than seven seasons on the PGA Tour, the toughest professional golf Tour in the world, is now all set to start the 2021-22 season next week.

Lahiri skipped the first tournament, the Fortinet Championships and starts at Sanderson. “I want to hit the ground running and check some things off my list,” added

Published on September 23, 2021

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