Aditi Ashok, the one who made India sit up and watch golf
- Aditi Ashok finished fourth at the Tokyo Olympics
- She is the first golfer from India to quality for the Tokyo Olympics
- She envisions an India where women are encouraged to play golf
The first Indian golfer to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, Aditi Ashok signed off 4th in the individual stroke play event after carding a three-under 68 in the weather-hit final round on Saturday. In the final round, she fired five birdies -- on the 5th, 6th, 8th, 13th and 14th holes -- against two bogeys on the 9th and 11th.
It was a heartbreaking end to Aditi's campaign considering she started the day at 2nd. But it was nonetheless a major improvement as she had finished tied 41st in the 2016 edition where golf made a comeback to the Olympics.
Who is Aditi Ashok?
The 23-year-old golfer was born in Bengaluru, Karnataka. She was barely 5 when she started her golf journey and later trained at the Karnataka Golf Association driving range.
Interestingly, her father Ashok Gudlamani accompanied her in the caddie. Aditi Ashok paved her way into Olympics at the age of 18 when she participated in the 2016 Rio Olympics, becoming the youngest ever contender in the women’s event. While she managed to lead the second round at the Olympic Golf Course, the young Indian golfer couldn’t sustain for long and finished at 41. However, as made it in the Ladies Professional
Golf Association (LPGA) and the Ladies European Tour (LET), her entry into the 2020 Tokyo Olympics solidified.
Two-time Olympian always sounds better than just one time," Aditi told Times of India. "It's an honour to be representing India at the world's biggest stage. Very few athletes get to do this in their career. I am looking forward to this opportunity, and I'm excited to go to Tokyo,” she added.
I knew I would make it to Tokyo. Unlike Rio, where I had to make an effort to qualify as I was an amateur till 2015, I did not get to play many world-ranking pro events. But I am proud of the journey I have had so far,” said the Bengalurean representing India at the Tokyo Olympics.
She envisions an India where women are encouraged to play golf. Setting an example and becoming an inspiration to many budding golfers, Aditi Ashok was felicitated with the Arjuna Award in 2020. Did you know that the Bengaluru girl is the only Indian golfer to participate at Asian Youth Games in 2013 , Youth Olympics and Asian Games in 2014.