Bhullar aiming for No.1 spot

Bhullar aiming for No.1 spot

Gaganjeet Bhullar of India. Asian Tour ASIAN TOUR
Gaganjeet Bhullar of India. Asian Tour ASIAN TOUR

Kuala Lumpur: To quote the Rolling Stones, Gaganjeet Bhullar can't get no satisfaction.

Winner of 11 titles, which makes him the third most successful player in the history of the Asian Tour, the 35-year-old Indian has now set his sights firmly on winning the Asian Tour Order of Merit.

His craving to become the sixth Indian player to end the year as No.1 just got more intense after a fantastic 2023, in which the Chandigarh-based professional finished third behind Andy Ogletree and Miguel Tabuena.

It would only be a natural progression for Bhullar, who finished No.6 in 2009, improved to fifth place in 2012 and 2013, then bettered it to a fourth place in 2018, before the third place last year.

As he starts a new season at the Malaysian Open this week, Bhullar revealed some of the goals he has set for himself in 2024.

"It's absolutely a top goal for me," said Bhullar, winner of the Indonesian Masters, following which he also won the season-ending Tour Championship on the domestic Indian Tour. "So many of my friends have done that, and I am very eager to join that club.

"When I won in Indonesia, the field was stacked as it was an International Series event. I played with Patrick Reed, who is a major champion, on Saturday. Winning that tournament has given me a different outlook. I personally feel that I'm ready to step up the game and I'm ready to go for the Order of Merit."

Bhullar hasn't played much golf in his six weeks of off-season, instead focusing on his body and mind.

"I mostly stayed away from golf. Spent a lot of time with family. But through this time off, I've been working a lot on my fitness, because I won't get much time from February all the way until May or June. So, I worked the last five weeks on my body -- my balance, the core and the glutes," said Bhullar.

A refreshed Bhullar can't wait to return to the golf course, the excitement heightened by the fact that the Malaysian Open is being played at Mines Resort, a golf course he loves.

"I was talking to my mum and dad a couple of days ago. They were there in Malaysia 12 years ago, when I played at the Mines and I had a top-10 finish in the CIMB Championship against all the PGA Tour stars. It was a long time ago, but still feels like as if it was part of last year's schedule," he reminisced.

"The golf course really suits my eye. I played well on it back in the day, and I'm hoping that I will play even better now."

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