Greater Noida resident Arjun Bhati, 12, is a new star on the horizon. An ace golfer, he is the winner of Kids World Golf Championship 2016, held at Malaysia from Dec 12-16. He defeated South Africa’s Methu Denish with two extra shots, and emerged as World No. 1 in Under-12 category. As many as 21 countries participated in this championship.
This is his ninth win this year, in the 23 national and international tournaments that he participated in. No mean feat for a 12 year old. No wonder his coach Monish Bindra is all praise for him. “I am extremely delighted and proud of Arjun. He is an excellent player but he needs to be consistent with his performance for the future tournaments,” says Bindra.
“It was a great experience; to compete with the international players of my age was thrilling. I really feel very good to have represented my country and won the game. I hope to do more for my country in the future,” says Arjun, while talking about his win.
Kids World Golf Championship is tournament for children between the ages of 5 years and 18 years. It is organized by US Kids Golf Foundation every year, and this time 21 countries participated in it. In fact, this competition is the international version of the prestigious US Kids Golf tournament and provides an excellent opportunity for young people to compete and earn world amateur ranking points.
During the three-level final match, Arjun scored a total of 234 points followed by South Africa and Malaysia with second and third position with 236 and 239 points respectively.
A student of Greater Valley School in Greater Noida, Arjun entered into the game of golf four years back after having been too impressed watching Tiger Woods matches on TV. “He is my inspiration and my idol too,” says Arjun.
That his home is near a Golf Course in Greater Noida played a vital role in developing his interest in the game. “I used to watch people playing golf from my room window and slowly I too got interested in it. Then I started watching golf games on TV and often saw Tiger Woods winning, which impressed me a lot. That was when I decided to follow his footsteps,” says Arjun.
“He was eight years of age when he asked me to buy him golf clubs, I was surprised. I thought this is his way of entering the golf course and meet player there,” says Arjun’s father, Bobby Bhati, a businessman.
“So, one day I took him to the golf course so that he could meet the players, but when we reached the playing field, Arjun expressed his deep interest in the game,” says the father. That was when the father understood his son’s aspiration and thereafter applied for the membership of golf course, just “so that Arjun could play”.
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Arjun practices the game for six hours every day while one hour is specifically devoted to physical training to acquire the required stamina. So how does he get time to study? “There is enough time to study after my golf,” he says, adding, “When I grow up, I want to become World No.1 golf player. I need to do a lot of hard work and practice for that,” says the boy with maturity beyond his age.
Till now, he has played a total of 73 tournaments, bagging the first position in 42 of these. The first tournament that he won was the 62 Albatross Junior Golf Tournament held in Pune (Maharashtra) in July 2014. The same year he was awarded the trophy of Golfing Champ by his school.
Arjun has been awarded by a number of organizations for his sporting talent, including the Trophy of Appreciation for Excellence in Golf from the All India Council of Human Right Liberties and Social Justice.