Virat Kohli takes a swing at Golf
I have always admired India’s cricket captain, Virat Kohli, to be one of the most physically fit cricketers ever. The way he moves in the field, his extraordinary agility and anticipation, his precise movements with a bat in hand all speak of a high level of commitment to his physical well-being. So when the Indian cricket team had a few weeks off and the captain decided to try his hand at golf, it was both a challenge and a test for me as a coach. Unlike with most players, this coaching stint came with a twist.
Perfection from bat to golf club
Virat Kohli wanted to get everything pretty much right and understand every aspect of the game like equipment, stance, set-up, swing and a variety of different shots before even stepping out onto the golf course. Guess that’s where his quest for perfection comes from.
Padding up or rather glove-ing up
The setting of the day was first an indoor lesson on a golf simulator and then out onto the golf course itself, organized by Ateet Gaur at the Ambience Greens Golf Club. Once the session started, as it was his first formal session in golf, we went through every aspect of the game bit by bit and he was still curious to know more. In a lighter moment when Virat had taken his stance he was looking at the bowler’s end and not down at the ball, I proclaimed, “Mr Kohli, there is no bowler today, it’s just a static ball at your mercy". Later, Virat made it a point to have an interactive session with everyone, enjoying the informal and having fun.
Eye of the tiger
The supremely talented athlete that he is, Virat’s body, hand and eye coordination kicked in quickly and he started middling the club-face to the ball almost straight away. The other excitement was that he was now getting to hit sixes that flew between 150 and 250 yards but golf is more about destination than distance. Therefore, I spent more time on his chipping and putting but long drives hitting, is what really got his fancy. TaylorMade had asked me to fit out his golf set, which to no surprise was all an extra stiff feel on the shaft. You can understand that he’s someone who likes control.
Golf has patience
Virat Kohli was deeply taken up by the game and its nuances, but I guess golf will have to wait, as we know where he belongs for the moment.