Muirfield: Indian golfer Shiv Kapur believes he is more prepared for his Open Championship challenge after receiving valuable advice from six-time Major champion Sir Nick Faldo.
Kapur, the only Indian in the elite field, was in the company of Faldo, who won two of his three Open titles at Muirfield, when they played a nine-hole practice round yesterday. "He knows the course very well and I tried to pick his brain on how to play in the wind and he was quite helpful and gave me some nice pieces of advice. We played nine holes and it was a cool experience. I really had some good words of
wisdom," said Kapur.
"He told me to keep my arms and hands soft when playing in the wind. We also studied the approach shots into the greens and he said when you are on a links course you have to study what's around the greens and not just on the greens.
"That's something we are not accustomed too. We usually look at the yardage and hit our shots but these little things make a difference," added the Indian, who will have Gregory Bourdy of France and Scott Jamieson of Scotland for company in the opening two rounds.
The 31-year-old reckons the experience of playing with Faldo, who is coming out of semi-retirement to play this week, will put him in good stead as he shoulders the sole Indian challenge at the year's third Major championship. "This is the first time I played with him. It is obviously cool. He is arguably one of the greatest golfers of all time. It was a great experience," he said.
"I think my chances of finishing as the best Indian are pretty good (jokes)! It is nice to have some Indian representation here. I think we got a really strong bunch of players at the moment and it won't be long before we have three or four of us playing in the Majors.
"My family is here and I'm looking forward to the experience. I'm carrying the hopes of the nation so I have to live up to that billing," said Kapur, who has won once on the Asian Tour.