Atwal eyeing repeat glory in India

Tue, 30 Nov 13:52:00 2010

Arjun Atwal will return to the site of his first tournament win as he prepares for the Hero Honda Indian Open in New Delhi.

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Atwal made history this season, becoming the first Indian to win on the US Tour after his victory at the Wyndham Championships.

But the 37-year-old said his triumph at the Indian Open 11 years ago held just as much significance to him.

"Winning the Indian Open in 1999 is one of my favourite victories," he said.

"It was my first win on the Asian Tour. It gave me so much confidence as I had been on the Asian Tour four years before that without winning.

"The Indian Open is a very important part of my schedule and that is why I try and make it back every year, no matter how I am playing or where I am playing.

"Anytime you win it is fun, especially when you win in India. Winning our national Open is always a great feeling."

Atwal's last victory on the Asian Tour was at the Malaysian Open in 2008, and since then he has been concentrating on the US Tour.

"Winning on the PGA Tour definitely took a lot of pressure off my mind," Atwal said. "Actually, I can also feel it in my body.

"Before I won, all the weeks before that when I was trying to keep my (Tour) card I had a really sore neck. As soon as I won it was gone. I think it was just the pressure that caused the sore neck.

"I had it worked on every day with the physio, but nothing was working. It was obviously in the back of my mind that I had to keep my job and keep my card.

"Now that pressure has gone."

This year's Indian Open, being played at the Delhi Golf Club, boasts a line-up including Thailand's former winner Thaworn Wiratchant, Sweden's Daniel Chopra, Irishman Paul McGinley and Indian three-times winner Jvoti Randhawa.


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