Friday, April 19

Teen Golf Champion Sadbhav Eyes More Golfing Glory after Historic Tour Win

Utsav Shakya, Kathmandu

Winning the Surya Nepal Challenge at the par-68 Royal Nepal Golf Club on Friday, Amateur golfer Sadbhav Acharya became the youngest champion to win the title in prestigious Surya Nepal Golf Tour.

At 16 years and 10 months, Sadbhav clinched his first major title and surpassed the previous record held by the current top amateur golfer, Subash Tamang. Subash previously set the record for the Youngest Champion of the Surya Nepal Golf Tour, winning the Surya Nepal Challenge at 16 years and 11 months.

Sadbhav secured victory in the sixth event of Surya Nepal Golf Tour 2022-23 carding a four-under 64 in the final round and finishing with a winning total of three-under 269. This performance was enough to see him take a two-stroke lead over the defending champion Bhuvan Nagarkoti.

Sadbhav overtook all the professional golfers with impressive rounds of 69, 66, 70, and 64. Even though the rain played spoil sport at times, he went on to win first Professional Golf Tour title at the young age of sixteen. “This victory has boosted my morale, and I feel confident about winning future tournaments as well,” he said.

He further added, “I am pleased with my performance. Beating the pros in a pro event for the first time and that too by 2 strokes in those conditions felt unrealistic.”

Sadbhav’s love for golf began at a very young age, inspired by his father Deepak Acharya, one of the finest professional golfers, and his grandfather. “I started playing golf when I was just 4 years old,” he recalled his early days.

Sadbhav Acharya with his father Deepak Acharya at Gokarna Golf Course when he was 9.

Sadbhav aspired to become a professional golfer from the age of 11. “My dad showed me a video of Tiger Woods chipping from outside the green in the Masters’ tournament when I was 11, and I was inspired to become a professional golfer after that. Tiger Woods inspired me, and I hope to surpass his level when I grow up,” Sadbhav replied when asked about his future plans.

During his childhood, Sadhbav used to visit the golf course with his parents for leisure. However, he gradually developed a fondness for the game. “My parents used to take me to the golf course just for fun, but I started to take it seriously and fell in love with the sport. They supported my decision, and I decided to pursue it as a career in the future,” Sadbhav explained his affection towards golf.

Sadbhav Acharya walking around at Gokarna Golf Course in his childhood.

Sadbhav made his debut in the Surya Nepal Golf Tour at the age of 14, competing in the Surya Nepal Central Open in March 2021. He has participated in a total of eight events in the tour so far. It did not take him long to win his first career title, as he won his maiden amateur title where he had started two years ago.

It was only two weeks back when Sadbhav emerged as the champion in the amateur section for the first time in Surya Nepal Central Open. He won the title in the 5th event of the current tour leaving behind his fellow golfer Subash Tamang.

Soon after, in the next event, he clinched his first-ever title of the Surya Nepal Golf Tour. He also came first in the Amateur section along with bagging the tour title.

In March, Sadbhav had a successful outing as he and Subash also won the men’s team event at the 36th Orion Bangladesh Amateur Championship in Bangladesh.

In June 2022, Sadbhav and Subash went to Bangalore to enroll at the Tarun Sardesai Golf Academy (TSG), the first professional golf, sports science, and educational institution in India. Sadhbav feels that he has made a lot of progress since joining the TSG Academy.

Sadbhav expressed his gratitude towards his parents for fulfilling his wish to join the TSG Academy in Bangalore, which required a huge budget. “I am here today only because of my parents’ sacrifices,” he said after winning his first golf tour title.

He also credited his improvement to the academy and its head coach, Tarun Sardesai. “I have improved a lot after joining the academy. Without him, my game would not have reached this level,” Sadbhav added.

According to Sadbhav, his psychologist at the TSG Academy has played a significant role in his game’s development. “Pranav Jose, my psychologist, has also been instrumental in shaping my game. He has taught me how to manage pressure during the game and many other things that are helping me a lot while playing,” said Sadbhav.

Sadbhav is looking forward to his next challenge, the 74th Singapore Junior Golf Championship 2023 which will be held in June at Seletar Country Club in Singapore. “I will work really hard for the Singapore Junior and I also have my exams coming up, so I have to balance my practices and studies,” stated Sadbhav.

When asked about his goals, Sadbhav mentioned that his initial goal is to clinch gold medals in Asian Games and Olympics. His ultimate goal, however, is to win more majors than Tiger Woods and break his records.

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