Bad karma has a way of jumping up at you like a fluffed lob wedge. I should have seen it coming. All that snickering over some of the idiosyncratic swings you’ll see at my home club would have furthered my case for golf purgatory.
Even well-meaning counsel by friends was abruptly ignored. “Don’t do it bud,” said Sammerjit Raikhy grimly when I mentioned, halfway into our weekend round, that I was planning on having my swing video-analysed at the DLF Golf Academy’s studio. Raikhy, a single-handicapper, pressed on with uncharacteristic seriousness. “You’ve got a decent swing. You just don’t hit it as well as you could because you have old clubs. Get new cavity backs—that’s what you need, not a video swing analysis,” he proffered. “Cynic,” I retorted suspiciously. Hard to trust a man who probably uses his weekly Nassau winnings from me to pay his car installments.
The studio at the DLF Golf Academy in Gurgaon is a golf swing aficionado’s Eden. Six cameras encircle the hapless golfer from all sides (and from the top), recording every move, which is played back real-time on a big screen. A ‘Samputt’ lab sits on the other extremity, while golf bags (with very attractive blades) line the edges. Seems like a single-handicapper hangout from the looks of it. Karan Bindra says that’s not the case. “The V1 Pro software, which we’ve installed here is obviously great for the pros, but it’s the amateurs who derive the most benefit. Why don’t you get warmed up by hitting a few balls first?” he says ominously.
Caddies passing by look at me and exchange grins. My last appearance here, at a pro-am, obviously left an impression. The pro on that occasion, Asian Tour regular Angelo Que, had been diplomatic. “I’m just glad you’re a writer!” Que had said warmly, putting his arm around my shoulder.
Banishing all negative memories, I scour my mental database for a few positive ones and heave away. There it is—the infernal slice, which has been plaguing my driver for the past month. Bindra looks on glumly before cancelling an appointment. “No sir, not today, I’m going to have a long afternoon,” he whispers into the phone.
“Okay, let’s have a look at what you’re doing,” he says finally. Bindra sets up the video of my swing alongside a side view of PGA Tour pro Aaron Baddeley’s swing. “Can you see how