Muirfield: Indian golfer Shiv Kapur went through the paces one final time today before he tees off in the first round of the world's oldest Major, the British Open here on Thursday.
The 31-year-old Indian, making his second appearance at the British Open, will look to improve on the best-ever performance by an Indian -- tied 27th by Jyoti Randhawa in 2004.
"Being the only Indian in the field there will be focus on me but I am not going to let the pressure get to me. I am feeling good and the game is in right shape. The first goal is to get into weekend action and then take it from there," he said.
Kapur will play the first round late in the afternoon at 3.40 pm alongside Frenchman Gregory Bourdy and Scotsman Scott Jamieson.
Kapur has been working with Jamie Gough for his swing and with Italian Alberto Binaghi for his short game. In recent months, Kapur has spent most of his time in Milan.
He said, "I have based myself in Milan because it helps me travel around Europe and I am working with Alberto over for the last few months. We worked on my short game and hitting shots in the wind. Jamie helped me get the belief back in my swing."
Kapur has also been reading Zen Golf: Mastering the Mental Game by Joseph Parent to toughen himself mentally and focus better.
Over the past few days, Kapur has played practice rounds with Nick Faldo, the six-time Major winner. Faldo's three Open titles include two at Muirfield.
Kapur also played with Matteo Manassero and Francesco Molinari, the Italian duo coached by Binaghi.
"No one knows Muirfield better than Nick Faldo. He gave me a few tips and playing with Matteo, who is just 20 and a top-30 player is a pleasure," said Kapur.
Only seven Indians have played at the British Open, and Kapur is only the third after Randhawa and Jeev to play in it more than once. Kapur's previous experience in 2006 ended with a missed cut.
"In 2006 I was still learning and before I knew the first two rounds were over," said Kapur, who shot rounds of 72 and 73.
Though Kapur has lost his European Tour card, in the last seven months, he has won once on domestic Indian Tour in Delhi and once on European Challenge Tour in Ahmedabad. Now a mature Kapur is ready to have a second fling at the 142nd Open Championships.
Story first published on: Wednesday, 17 July 2013 21:08 IST