Sports

Aditi close to becoming Indian with most Major starts; Tvesa ready for debut

V Krishnaswamy August 18 | Updated on August 18, 2020 Published on August 18, 2020

A file photo of Aditi Ashok   -  Reuters

The history-making Indian women’s trio will have family and friends with them at Royal Troon, even though there will be no spectators. The young threesome Aditi Ashok (22), Diksha Dagar (19) and Tvesa Malik (24) will write a new chapter in Indian golf as never before have three Indians, men or women, teed up at the same Major. They will also have someone familiar to turn to on the famed course, which hosts the Women’s Open for the first time.

Aditi, who often has her father on the bag, has her mother, Maheshwari, this time – she was also there at Scottish Open – while Diksha’s father, Col Narendra Dagar will, as usual, do the duty of a caddie. Tvesa has a friend and experienced European Tour pro, Kiran Matharu, as her caddie.

Debutant Tvesa said, “I have some experience of playing with the European players, especially at home at the Hero Indian Open, where I had my first Top-10 last year, but a Major in Scotland is a different thing altogether.”

About playing at Scottish open last week, Tvesa laughed and said, “Links golf is interesting, and now I know the importance of missing it in the right place. I believe this week it will be amplified in terms of wind and conditions. I have a friend, Kiran Matharu on the bag for a second week. She is an Indian, who lives in Britain and has played much golf on European Tour. She is very experienced.”

When she tees up on Thursday, Aditi will come on step closer to becoming the Indian with most Major starts. Since her maiden Major at the 2016 Women’s Open, this will be her 15th Major, which takes her past Jeev Milkha Singh’s total of 14 and leaves her one short of Anirban Lahiri’s 16. However, women have five Majors each year, while men have four.

Aditi, who was only 18 when she won the Hero Women’s Indian Open in her rookie year in 2016, said, “The course is pure and in great shape. It’s a bit soft because of the rain the past couple of days. I’m excited to be competing in such a storied venue with so much history. The key for me this week is accuracy off the tee and staying out of the bunkers. Hopefully, the wind isn’t too much during the week. I didn’t have the best week last week, but it was good Links practice, and I’m feeling more ready than I felt last week.”

Aditi, whose first two efforts at The Open in 2016 and 2017 were low key, was T-22 in 2018. It has also been her best showing in a Major, so will be looking at going better than before, especially since she did not play it last year.

Dagar’s two Major starts, at the Women’s Open and Evian in 2019, ended before the weekend.

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Published on August 18, 2020
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