Mental strength will be key at Hero Women’s Indian Open, says Aditi

Gurugram, Oct 18 (Golf News) Exhausted after playing non-stop for over two months, India's Aditi Ashok says conserving her energy, especially mental reserve, will be the key as she looks to reclaim the Hero Women's Indian Open beginning here on Thursday.

Aditi had become the first Indian to win a Ladies European Tour title when she claimed the 2016 Women's Indian Open.

Since then, the Indian has been a regular at the LPGA and also came close to winning an Olympic medal at the Tokyo Games, eventually finishing fourth.

"I came back to defend it in 2017 (was T-13). That was the last time here, so I am looking forward to it. This is actually my ninth week in a row and so I'm a bit tired, I guess a bit jet-lagged," three-time LET winner Aditi said on Tuesday.

"But I'm just going to try and conserve my energy for this week because it is four rounds. I'm used to it being a three-round event! It's like a tough walk out there too, and you need a lot of mental energy to play this golf course.

"So, I'm just going to try and focus on that so that I have the best physical and mental state for those five hours every day." The golfer from Bengaluru had finished T-8 as an amateur in the 2012 edition as a 14 year old.

Now 24, Aditi says she has become a better golfer over the years.

"I think as a golfer, obviously I've changed a lot since I last played here in 2017. I think just the level, the skills I have like I felt I had a great short game when I used to play in India and then when I got to the LPGA, I realized everyone has a great short game.

"So, I had to work at being even better at something that I was already good at and the same with putting, same with driving accuracy and so many other things. I feel like I've made them tighter and so, as a golfer, definitely better." "I'm basically homegrown, I've lived here, and played here all my life. So if I could reach that level, I think anybody can do it. So yeah, it is pressure, but I feel like it's also an opportunity to motivate youngsters to do the same." Besides Aditi, the Indian challenge will be led by Tvesa Malik, Diksha Dagar, Amandeep Drall, Vani Kapoor, Ridhima Dilawari, Gaurika Bishnoi and Neha Tripathi among others.

Tvesa, who had an outstanding season in 2021 but struggled this year, knows that a strong finish at her home event will give her enough takeaways for 2023.

She said, "I think the first year I came out on the tour, the Hero Women's Indian Open is probably the first experience that I had playing with players from the LET when I was playing full time on the WGAI." "I'm coming back here to play again and I'm very excited to play at home, so I'm looking forward to it," added Tvesa.

The USD 400,000 tournament will see former winners such as defending champion Christine Wolf, 2018 winner Becky Morgan, Camisole Chevalier, and Caroline Hedwall in action at the DLF Golf and Country Club.

Christine said, "It's really nice to be back. I got to hold the title for the last three years, so I enjoyed that. It was very special for me to be back and walk past the 18 again. I'm just very excited to be back." Four-time Ladies European Tour winner Linn Grant will also be in action this week. 

Also Read : Aditi Ashok to participate in Women's Indian Open starting Oct 20

News Source : PTI


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