Randhawa sees bright future in Lahiri at Omega European Masters

Crans Montana, Switzerland: India’s Jyoti Randhawa, the Asian Tour’s number one in 2002, believes the future of golf in India is bright with compatriot Anirban Lahiri among the shining stars.

The eight-time Asian Tour winner is convinced that Lahiri, who is 15 years his junior, will be among the next generation of golfers to put the spotlight on India which holds the distinction of having the most Asian Tour Order of Merit winners.

“He’s a great talent and he’s playing really well. He’s also a focused individual and I know he’ll go far in life,” said Randhawa, who mixed four birdies against one bogey to post an opening three-under-par 68 at the Omega European Masters.

Although Randhawa is five shots back of first round leader, Gregory Bourdy (63) of France and two behind Lahiri (66), he is satisfied with how he has conducted himself at the Crans-sur-Sierre Golf Club.

“I haven’t been playing for two, three months now and I’ve been taking it easy and relaxing at home. So coming here and performing like this, I’m really happy,” said Randhawa, whose last victory was the 2009 Thailand Open.

With testing weather conditions including mountain snows and temperatures likely to fall below 10 degrees, Randhawa is unperturbed about the tough week ahead.

“This is Europe. You have to expect rain and you have to expect these kind of conditions,” said the Indian.

The Omega European Masters is the first event in Europe to be co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and European Tour since 2009.