Zambia to Srinagar, Shravan Desai’s tryst with golf

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Unknown to Shravan Desai, the industrial city of Ndola stoked a fire that was different from the ones that raged in the copper mines of Zambia’s second-largest city. It all started with a neighbor inviting the 10-year-old to accompany him to the nearby golf club. It was fun to start with, but the sport took root in a way that by 16 Shravan was certain where his future lay. Hailing from a non-golfing family, there may have been a few raised eyebrows but that did matter as the father stood firmly by his boy. That front taken care of, it was now about getting better.

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That has been the hardest part, but Shravan kept at it. The grind as an amateur spilled over and his first six starts as a pro last year resulted in a missed cut. But that did not fluster the young athlete, and sure enough, a special week lay in store when he made his first pro-cut at the Gujarat Open on his home course, Kalhaar Blues and Greens, this February. From there on, making the weekend regularly has added to the confidence to the extent that Sharvan has had a taste of playing the leader group and notching his first top-10 at the J&K Open in Srinagar. It was a moment Shravan would have liked to celebrate with his mother, but life isn’t always fair. But wherever she is, her blessings are with Shravan.

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