New Delhi: Local hero Gaganjeet Bhullar will be aiming to play his way into the history books by becoming the champion at the 50th Hero Indian Open next month, an event he calls as his “fifth Major.”
The 26-year-old, currently third on the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit, will be fired up to produce a winning performance at the Delhi Golf Club from November 7 to 10 when his national championship celebrates its golden edition.
He will be amongst the home stars who include Arjun Atwal, Anirban Lahiri and Jyoti Randhawa, who will be keen to wrest the Hero Indian Open title away from defending champion Thaworn Wiratchant of Thailand.
“I think it’s a great achievement that the Hero Indian Open has gone so far ahead. It’s one of the strongest events on the Asian Tour and everybody looks forward to playing at the Delhi Golf Club,” said Bhullar.
“It’ll be a good achievement for me to play in the 50th edition and Delhi Golf Club is always one of my favourite courses. I’ve been in contention there a few times and I’m looking forward to play there again.”
Bhullar recalls watching his first Indian Open when Randhawa, who is a three-time champion, triumphed at the Delhi Golf Club. “When I was about 13, I pretty much remembered Jyoti winning the Indian Open. At that time, we can only dream of playing on the Asian Tour and now, we are on the Asian tour,” said Bhullar, who is a four-time winner on the Asian Tour.
“It’s a great achievement for us. The Indian Open is the fifth major for us. All the hopes are definitely positive and I’ll be giving it 100 per cent. It’ll mean a lot if I can win the 50th Indian Open. You’ll go into the history books.
“I’m not sure I’ll be alive to see the 100th Indian Open. Everyone would certainly remember the 50th champion. These are the things that players want to strive for, including myself,” he added.
With Hero MotoCorp title sponsoring the Indian Open and also being one of his personal sponsors, Bhullar knows that a victory would also repay the faith that Hero MotoCorp has put on him.
“Mr Pawan Munjal (CEO of Hero MotoCorp) has been supporting me for the last four to five years. He’s one of the biggest sponsors of Indian sports and it’ll be really good to play in front of our home fans and our sponsors. Nothing will beat winning your home title for your sponsors,” said Bhullar.
“Delhi Golf Club is a name that scares a lot of foreign players. But for us, we are from that golf course. We’ve found a way to play there. I’ve had decent finishes over the years, I’ve been contention a few times but I’ve never got the opportunity to win. This time, I’m feeling really positive. I’m striking the ball good and if my putter becomes friendly, I’m sure I’ll be right up there.”