Watching Rory McIlroy makes me work harder everyday: Varun Muthappa

golf

Watching Rory McIlroy makes me work harder everyday: Varun Muthappa
spogonews
2022-09-08 10:54 AM
0 min read

Despite being just 18 years old, Indian golfer Varun Muthappa recently won four prestigious tournaments conducted at the Karnataka Golf Association (KGA) and the Bangalore Golf Club (BGC). In this exclusive interview, he speaks about his journey as a professional golfer, winning four golf tournaments, special achievements, influence of his coach Mr. Tarun Sardesai, looking up to Rory McIlroy, overcoming challenges and his future goals.

Q 1) When were you first introduced to golf and what motivated you to pursue it professionally?

I started playing golf when I was about four and a half years old. It was just a pastime and I come from a family of golfers. My dad, uncle and my grandfathers from both sides were golfers. I was always a decent golfer growing up and I could hit the ball well. I started getting better and golf felt like a very natural career path for me. All roads ended up leading towards golf for me so it worked out nicely.

Q 2) You recently won four golf tournaments conducted by the Karnataka Golf Association (KGA) and the Bangalore Golf Club (BGC). Tell us about that experience?

Keeping form for 4 to 5 weeks is always challenging as you need to be on top of your game. I think what is important for me is staying in the present, what is done is done. I follow a process oriented procedure rather than looking at results. I just focus on the process and the rest just happens. It is a lot of work but all paid off during that time period.

Q 3) Which out of the four was the most special victory for you and why?

The Karnataka Amateur Tournament was really special as it was a two round tournament where in the first round I shot 3 over and I was one shot behind my mentor David D’Souza who is a former Indian golfer. On the second day, I stuck to my game process and shot 9 under par as I broke the course record that day. I won the tournament with 9 shots remaining, all in all it was a bittersweet victory for me.

Also read: My aim is to win the World Championship: Snooker player Varshaa Sajeev

Q 4) Tell us about the influence of your coach Mr. Tarun Sardesai on your career so far?

I have known Tarun sir since I was 7 years old but I started officially working with him 2 years ago when I joined his academy. I moved there since his academy is on the outskirts of Bangalore, I stay there 5 days a week and only come back home on the weekends. He is the reason my game has improved so much as we have improved on all the finer details like changing my swing, my workout routine, my diet etc. His entire structure brings a lot of clarity in my game as I hope to continue with Tarun sir for a long time

Q 5) Which golf player do you look up to and why?

My favourite golfer is Rory McIlroy from Northern Ireland, he is currently ranked number 3 but he was world number 1 for a long time. I relate to Rory McIlroy because of the way he hits the ball. Both of us hit the ball a long way and I just love his style of play. I also love the way he presents himself on and off the court, he is really humble and down to earth. I aspire to be like that and play golf the way he plays it. To be the best in the world consistently is the dream and that's where I want to be. I can see myself doing that and Rory is a great role model to have and he has been my favourite ever since I was a little kid. Looking at his photos and some of his old videos gives me a lot of motivation when I'm lacking some. Watching him makes me want to work harder everyday.

Q 6) What are some of the biggest challenges that you have faced in your career and how did you overcome them?

It's definitely not an easy road. People think it's very easy to play sports as you do what you love, practice for 3 hours and then relax. It may look like that from the outside but it's not like that. You need to work every single day and it can get a little boring sometimes because you are doing the same thing day in, day out. You have to work on the finest of details which a lot of people just don't get. I think I was transitioning to my swing when I went through a really rough patch where I was shooting really high scores and I just wasn't able to get the ball where I wanted to. This was about 7-8 months ago where nothing was going my way. I called my coach to ask him what is happening and why I'm not able to perform despite working and doing what I need to do. I went back to the academy and had this insight on how to work better and ever since then I have really changed how I do things. 

From shooting 9 overs, I feel that I can now shoot under par every single day which is where you want to be if you're looking to turn professional. The hardest part was to change my thinking and the way I do things. My goal is to wake up everyday and be the best. If you want to be number 1 in the world then you have to live like the world number 1. You have to behave like the best golfer in the world and do the little things that the best golfers do. I'm doing all these things and they have made a big difference in my game. I'm thinking more positively, I'm working a lot more effectively and I'm taking better care of my health. 

Q 7) What are your future goals? How do you plan to accomplish them?

My goal in the world of golf is to be winning majors and to be consistently competing at the world's biggest stage like the European tour which is now the DP World Tour and the PGA tTour. I want to be able to win the majors and I think the best way to do that is to stick to your process, believe in yourself and your team. Giving into your team's expectations is also a big part of it. I'm working the hours right now, trying to improve in order to be better not just as a golfer but also as a human being. I think the smallest things will make the difference in the long run.