Nov 21, 2018: Indian hotshots Anirban Lahiri and Gaganjeet Bhullar will be looking to turn their friendly rivalry into a formidable partnership when they battle for their country’s honour at the ISPS HANDA Melbourne World Cup of Golf on Thursday.
Bhullar and Lahiri, who turned professional in 2006 and 2007 respectively, have been spurring each other on with their individual achievements throughout the years. Their successes also served as a motivation for each other to reach greater heights in their careers.
Having known each other since they were 11 years old, the Indian pair, who has won a combined total of 16 titles on the Asian Tour, is confident they can produce the right chemistry and combine effectively for a great showing at The Metropolitan Golf Club.
Lahiri and Bhullar are part of the six two-man Asian teams in the 56-man field hoping to hoist the famous trophy at the US$7 million event, won previously by many legends of the games.
Japan (1957 and 2002) and Chinese Taipei (1972) remain the only two Asian nations to have won the prestigious event since its inception in 1953.
In the 59th staging of the World Cup of Golf this week, the first and third days of competition will be four-ball (best ball) format while the second and final days are foursomes (alternate shot) play.
Did you know?
- Anirban Lahiri and Gaganjeet Bhullar are making their second appearances in the World Cup of Golf this week. Lahiri first partnered Bhullar in the team event which was held at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club in 2013.
- Lahiri and Bhullar hold a combined total of 16 victories on the Asian Tour, which includes three co-sanctioned wins on the European Tour.
- Lahiri, now a regular player on the PGA Tour, is a two-time International team member of the Presidents Cup. He is also the Asian Tour Order of Merit champion in 2015.
- Lahiri, 31, and Bhullar, 30, have represented India together in numerous team competitions since their amateur days. They featured in the Eisenhower Cup, Nomura Cup and Asian Games, delivering a team silver in 2006, before venturing almost at the same time into the play-for-pay ranks where they also represented Team Asia in the inaugural EurAsia Cup in 2013.
- Bhullar holds the most number of victories by an Indian player on the Asian Tour after claiming his ninth career triumph at the Fiji International presented by Fiji Airways in August.
- For Bhullar, being picked by Lahiri offers him an opportunity for redemption as he finished last in the field in the 2013 edition when the tournament was played under a different format. Players competed individually and both scores contributed towards the team’s score back then.
- India’s best finish of ninth place in the event was achieved by Arjun Atwal and Jyoti Randhawa in Portugal in 2005.