Virat Kohli Foundation is a great support in terms of nutrition, training, and finance, says Indian golfer Aadil Bedi

Aadil Bedi turned professional in the Panasonic Open
Aadil Bedi turned professional in the Panasonic Open

Aadil Bedi is a young Indian professional golfer, who turned pro in the month of October this year. He also represented India in the 2018 Asian Games. He is a great admirer of Jeev Milkha Singh.

In an exclusive interview with Sportskeeda, Bedi talks about his entire career and his plans for the future.

What inspired you to choose golf apart from all other sports?

Bedi: My parents were Government officers posted in Fatehgarh Sahib (40 km from Chandigarh). My father was a cheerful golfer. He uses to go to play golf every day in the evening to Chandigarh. I use to accompany him most of the times to get cold drink and chips. 

He uses to play Civil Service tournament and other social events. I use to accompany him as the only child. Slowly I developed my interest in the game at the age of 4. Then my father quit his own game and started planning and developing my game with the assistance of coaches and experts. Initially, I use to practice golf in the football ground located behind my house at Fatehgarh Sahib. I use to make a flag with an iron rod with my mom’s dupatta as a flag and hit sand wedges before my family finally shifted to Chandigarh and I started practicing at CGA golf range.

My family supported my dreams. I preferred this game as there was only batting in golf, no fielding and waiting like in cricket. Although, my first love was cricket I prefer golf as my father was my babysitter and I spend a lot of time with him.

You turned into a professional golfer in October. How do you look at this?

Bedi: I played two matches as a professional and I'll be going to Malaysia for next match in this month end. The game is the same as I use to play as an Amateur. We are not fighting with players directly as in archery or shooting. But definitely, I don’t feel settled here. It will take me a couple of matches before I can control my adrenal as I use to control in Amateur matches. I have already learned that I have to put ice in my nervous system to win big championships on Asian tour / PGTI tour next year. 

What role has the legendary Jeev Milkha Singh played in your life?

Bedi: I grew up at Chandigarh golf club watching Jeev sir. I saw him winning Majors and leading in big matches. He used to guide me a lot when I was a junior. He was like a star and mentor to me. He outlined the guiding map for me as he played all over the world. I started playing in USA / UK in very early years of my life. My aim is to win at Augusta Masters and PGA USA. This aim was set keeping in view the of Jeev sir's record and achievement as he played all Majors in USA.

You represented India in the Asian Games 2018. What was your experience out there?

 Bedi: I was leading the Asian game for first 3 days. A small mistake on final day cost me the podium. But I learnt a lot from my failure. I was the youngest participant from India. Incidentally, in the next Asian Games, only professionals are eligible to play. This motivates me to work harder and make my ranking in the professional circuit so that I can qualify for the Asian games and Olympic games.

Virat Kohli Foundation aims to empower athletes from all over India. What would you like to comment upon this initiative?

 Bedi: VKF is a great support in terms of nutrition, training, and finance. It means a lot to me as no big sponsors support you in the early years of your career. They approve and funds almost all my matches including the cost of caddy and manager. It means a lot to me at this stage. 

Which particular tournament would you like to call as the turning point of your career?

Bedi: Becoming India number 1 amateur in April this year really boosted my confidence and I gained the required momentum which was required to clear Asian games trials and ultimately I finished T13 in Asian games.

Sports like Cricket and Badminton has a huge fan base in India. How can we develop interest amongst the people for Golf?

Bedi: My final aim to win at Augusta Masters and play at PGA tour of USA. Golf is a major game among developed countries. All successful player from India like Shubankar, Gaganjeet Bhullar and Anirbhan Lahiri plays there. Your country follows you automatically if you are playing for your nation and do good in foreign countries. But definitely, India is Cricket playing nation. More sponsors and more money is there in cricket as compared to Golf. I am planning to start my career simultaneously at PGTI /Asian Tour, so my fan following will be at the world stage. Youngsters will automatically follow successful players life as we watched Jeev Milkha Singh Sir.

Edited by Rajdeep Puri

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