Indian golf legend Jeev Milkha Singh is looking forward to a winning debut at the USD 1 million Resorts World Manila Masters later this month when he returns to a country which holds fond memories for him.
The 42-year-old Singh has committed to the full-field Asian Tour tournament at the Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club from November 20 to 23 where he will be seeking a seventh Asian Tour title.
The Philippines provided the backdrop for Singh to stamp his mark in Asia as a young professional when he won the Philippine Classic and Asian Matchplay Championship back in 1995.
Those victories subsequently provided the cornerstone for the tenacious Indian to enjoy a highly successful career which includes two Asian Tour Order of Merit triumphs in 2006 and 2008, four wins in Japan and three on European soil.
"I've not been back to the Philippines for years and I'm looking forward to playing in the Resorts World Manila Masters," said Singh, who is an Asian Tour Honorary Member.
"I remember those two wins which were early in my career.
Obviously, the Philippines has been a good hunting ground and it has been fantastic for me. I love coming back to play in Asia. It's given me a lot and I just love the Asian Tour and the camaraderie that we have on our Tour. It just feels like home to me."
Singh's last victory came at the 2012 Scottish Open but he has since struggled with his game due to injuries to his finger and shoulder.
"I just want to get my confidence level up, that's my main goal for the rest of the year," said Singh.
"I'm much better, not 100 per cent yet but I'm working on improving my driving which needs a lot of work. The more I play and the more I start to hit the driver more freely, the rest will come back," said Singh, whose father Milkha was a famous Olympic runner.
"I'm trying to get more still on the swing. With the injuries, I've started moving too much and I'm working to still myself and then take the club back."
Singh currently has a bone spur in his right shoulder, which according to his doctor, requires surgery but the Indian star has opted for alternative medicine to ease the pain.
"I've got a bone spur in the right rotator cuff and I need surgery. However, I'm avoiding and am taking homeopathic medication. If it doesn't get better, I'll get a cortisone injection shot in," he said.
The Resorts World Manila Masters, the richest golf tournament in the Philippines, will celebrate its second edition and Singh saluted the Asian Tour for launching the new event with title sponsor Resorts World.
The Asian Tour has also recently announced new tournaments in Dubai, Mauritius, Malaysia and Thailand for December and next season which Singh believes is a wonderful sign of growth for the region?s premier Tour.
"I'm very excited for the players and the Asian Tour," he said. "I hope we have more tournaments coming up."
Sponsors of this year's Resorts World Manila Masters include Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club, Bally Technologies, Aristocrat, International Gaming Technology, Renoir Implementation Services, Marriott, Philippine Airlines, Maybank, PLDT.