New Delhi, April 10, 2008: Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) member Shiv Kapur is back home in Delhi to take a break from his hectic international schedule. He is using this break to prepare for the long season ahead by sharpening certain areas of his game. While in the capital Kapur spoke to PGTI about his performances in 2008 and his goals for the rest of the season.
How has the year 2008 been for you so far?
It’s been a bit up and down. Despite delivering a couple of good performances I have missed out on three to four weeks of competitive golf due to ill health. I had a great week at the Johnnie Walker Classic where I posted a tied fifth finish despite being unwell at the start of the tournament. I also started on a high at the Dubai Desert Classic as I went head to head with Tiger Woods for three days but unfortunately could not finish well. I’m now looking forward to the long season ahead as I have another 21 events to play this year. I have worked hard on my game in the last three weeks so that effort should pay-off soon. Hopefully if I can stay away from injuries I should be fine for the rest of the year.
Do you think playing too many tournaments leads to a burnout?
I’m still trying to learn what works for me as it’s only my third year on the international circuit. It’s trial and error. I haven’t settled on the right formula but I definitely think that if you play too much you cannot be competitively sharp every week because golf’s such an exhausting sport that you need to be mentally sharp all the time. I think playing 30-35 weeks in a year works for me. In my view if you play four weeks and then have a week or two weeks off, you’ll be raring to go.
What are your goals for the year 2008?
My primary goal is to win on the European Tour this year and qualify for the PGA Championship. I’m also aiming at getting into the top 100 of the world and securing a berth at the Volvo Masters.
How do you rate Jeev Milkha Singh’s chances at the US Masters this week?
Jeev has been in great form of late and has a good chance of delivering a memorable performance at the Masters this week. He played well at the WGC-CA Championship recently and has been in the hunt two out of the last four weeks that he’s played. There’s no doubt that he has the ability to beat the best in the world but it’s just a question of finding form at the right time.
You have a short breather from competitive golf at the moment. How are you utilizing this break?
I took the first four or five days off. Since then there’s been lot of work on physical fitness because I’m trying to get in shape for the long stretch ahead. I’ve worked a lot on my short game and sharpened up areas that were not so sharp. In the last couple of weeks I have had seven to eight hour sessions on the course where I have concentrated on my short game.
What kind of a fitness regimen do you follow in order to keep in shape and avoid injuries?
I spend a lot of time in the gym and do a lot of stretching exercises. But now I am also looking to take up yoga as I believe meditation would help me with the mental side of my game. I tend to get very impatient on the golf course at times and yoga would help me in dealing with this problem.
What has been the most memorable moment of your golfing career so far?
Winning the gold medal at the 2002 Asian Games in Busan. This victory was special because it was not only for myself but also for the country. I’ve won the Volvo Masters and quite a few other things but standing on that podium with the medal is something different.
What is your mantra in life?
It’s always about being the best you can be and remember that you can only control the effort you put in and not the result.