Momentous season and watering down of a stereotype for Ridhima Dilawari

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A phenomenal rookie season in 2019 saw Ridhima Dilawari win an unprecedented five times on the WGAI.
A phenomenal rookie season in 2019 saw Ridhima Dilawari win an unprecedented five times on the WGAI.

As Ridhima Dilawari was working towards her dream of making a career in professional golf, one of the driving forces was the belief in her work ethics — “hardworking and dedicated”. The vindication came soon enough when she turned pro at the end of 2018.

The next year on the Women’s Golf Association of India was her full season as a rookie, and despite going in with little or no expectations, she was aware that the pressure of competition would get the best out of her.

The quiet confidence paved the way for a phenomenal 2019 and saw her win five times, a first on the Tour. But more than the record, this piece of statistic helped belie the perception about women’s golf in some ways. “That sport isn’t a hobby and we (women) too can be serious competitors.”

 

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Ridhima speaks about the season that helped her create space among peers and competitors.

“Going into my first full season as a professional golfer in 2019, I didn’t have too many expectations. All I wanted was to play the best golf and prove to myself that I was ready to play on the highest level of the sport.

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“Winning five events as a rookie was not something I had anticipated. Being able to close out tournaments and hold my nerve down the stretch showed that I truly belonged in the professional sphere and subsequently gave me the motivation to work harder to try and reach the pinnacle of women’s professional golf.”

 

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Since then, she has won many times, the latest being at the start of the the year in Bangalore at Prestige Golfshire. It set hope going that the 2021 season ccould pan out in a similar way, but that was not to be.

 

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The second wave of the pandemic stalled the Tour in March after just six events. When it restarts next month, no stone will be left unturned to ensure the prolific run of the rookie year is re-enacted.

Pix Credit: Ridhima Dilawari

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