Breaching the pain barrier a norm with Khalin Joshi

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Turning up on a tournament week in discomfort and beating pain is not new for Khalin Joshi.
Turning up on a tournament week in discomfort and beating pain is not new for Khalin Joshi.

Pain and Khalin Joshi go back a long way and discomfort tends to bring the fighting spirit to the fore. A broken right wrist at the start of 2014 stoked the fire to an extent that on return he broke through on the Professional Golf Tour of India with the win in Noida.

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The setting before the Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational in December 2020 was a throwback to those days. Khalin was shooting low scores at practice and felt confident “having figured out a couple of things in the golf swing and ball position”.

With hours left for the flight to Chandigarh, he left the Karnataka Golf Association, stopping at a haunt nearby before heading home.

 

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Perhaps preoccupied by what lay ahead in competition, he did not notice the charge of a couple of strays till almost the last moment. Stung into action, he bolted with the dogs in pursuit. Khalin made it to safety but in the haste to close the heavy gate hurt the left wrist.

By morning the wrist had swollen up and the advice of the physio on arrival in Chandigarh was to withdraw from the Wednesday pro-am. The wrist in K-tape, Khalin decided to play once the fear of aggravating the impact injury was addressed.

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“There was pain but it got better as I warmed up.” Walking the course but not hitting all the shots and of course the chatter set him up for competition. Each day, Khalin arrived at the golf course an hour earlier than scheduled to allow the physio to work and tape the wrist afresh.

 

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He had a one-shot lead the opening day, slipped but bounced back strongly on Sunday. The finish is testimony of grit as never before had Khalin played a tournament in a plaster or with painkillers. For the man though, the injury had no role to play. “I finished T7 because of the way I played; the wrist is no excuse.”

As the PGTI restarts operations in Hyderabad next month, Khalin will be drawing from that fighting spirit and making a charge with an eye on the order of merit summit.

Photo credit: PGTI