Having secured her Ladies European Tour card for the second straight season with a fine show in the Qualifying School, Sharmila Nicollet said on Wednesday that her goal now is to retain her playing rights.
“Having played for one season, I'm slowly getting used to the conditions and playing style,” said the 22-year-old at a press conference where she was announced as the brand ambassador for Champion Reef Golf County in KGF.
“Last year, being my debut season, was very difficult. However, I’m glad that I made it through again via Q School. During the off season I worked on different areas of the game, especially the short game. I’m also happy that Champion Reef happened at the right moment.
“Generally, in Europe it is extremely windy and at Champion Reef the conditions are very similar. Also they’ve got bentgrass on the greens just like most courses in Europe. So it helped me prepare well this time around and I’m looking forward to the season,” added Sharmila, who will leave for Morocco on Friday for her first event of the season, Lalla Meryem Cup.
Talking about her goals, Sharmila said the ultimate aim for any professional would be to win. “So far, no Indian has won in Europe and I’m targetting that. I know it’s very difficult but if I play consistent golf I know I can. A win will definitely provide a major boost to women’s golf in the country. Having said that, the main focus would be to finish within the top-80 and maybe get a few top-10s.”
Meanwhile, George Menomparampil, managing director of Champion Reef Golf Pvt Ltd, said they were keen to tap golf's potential to blend business with sports. “Our main aim is to create Bangalore as one the top golfing destinations in the country. We also want to build an build an academy which will create champions for the future.”
The academy at the Champions Reef has already been certified by the Indian Golf Union and so far construction on nine holes has been completed. The full course is expected to be ready by end of next year.