Phil Mickelson compares Masters debutant Shubhankar Sharma to Tiger Woods

Shubhankar Sharma (Courtesy of his official Facebook profile)

Sharma received a special invitation to compete in the 2018 Masters.

Shubhankar Sharma, the 21-year-old Indian golf player, who became the fourth player from the country to play in the Masters Tournament, said that he was happy because of the attention he was getting.

Sharma, who is playing his first major championship, hopes to get a good finish this weekend.

“I’m actually very happy that I’m getting a lot of attention. A lot of people back home are following me, and if I can get a good finish this weekend, maybe even win a green jacket, it will be great for the game,” Sharma was quoted as saying by augusta.com.

Sharma received a special invitation to compete in the 2018 Masters.

Two days of playing at the Augusta National Golf Course has given Sharma enough experience to advance in the tournament.

“I thought I was kind of prepared for it, but most of the holes exceeded my expectation. Of course, it goes without saying that they were all just very, very beautiful,” Sharma said.

Though Sharma has watched the masters on television for years, his on-the-ground experience, in the beginning, was surprising.

“I was surprised just seeing the slope on the first hole…the fairway there has huge elevation. That was very surprising. On TV, it looked pretty flat,” he said.

“Another new thing I learned was the effect of Rae’s Creek on the putts. The PlayStation games are very realistic but you don’t get to know things like this. Because of the pull of the water, any putt towards it is faster. On the 10th hole, with the creek behind the hole, I was surprised how the uphill putts were significantly faster than you’d expect,” noted Sharma.

The player from Chandigarh has roped in veteran caddie Mitch Knox, who has over 25 years of PGA & European Tour experience, to strengthen his side.

“Mitch has been fantastic, and he was joking yesterday that he has yardage books which are older than me. So, it is great to have that experience to help me this week,” said Sharma.

Three-time Masters champion Phil Mickelson praised Sharma for his talent by comparing him to Tiger Woods.

“Given the way he played in Mexico and his talent level, I’m excited that he has the opportunity to play here and compete at the Masters,” said Mickelson.

“It will create more awareness in his home country for the game of golf. I think the growth potential in India is enormous, and what he’s doing to help grow that game could very well be similar to what Tiger has done to grow golf in the US and world,” he added.

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