Golf: The hot flavour

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:38 IST

For the first time, an Indian golfer would feature in a television advertisement with ICICI signing up the hugely marketable Shiv Kapur.

New Delhi:

For the first time, an Indian golfer would feature in a television advertisement with ICICI signing up the hugely marketable Shiv Kapur. The golfer, who offers golfing tips in the advertisement, is promoting the ICICI's corporate golf tournament. "The relationship between the public and cricketers is becoming increasingly volatile, one day they celebrate their success and the other day they burn down their house. So golfers are a safe bet with them doing well internationally and others like Sania," said Anirban Das Blah, Vice President, Globosport. Jeev Milkha Singh, who has many firsts to his name could now become the first Indian golfer to earn a major sponsorship deal. Its rumored that British banking major Barclays want to sign him on. "Even the Ceo's are celebrating Christmas, so there's nothing on just yet. As soon as there is any news, I'll let you know," said World No. 37 Jeev Milkha Singh. Jeev's deal with Barclays could be worth close to 90 lakh rupees, far less than the 10 crore that he has earned this year in prize money after winning four titles. However, for any sportsperson the prestige of being recognised as a 'saleable' commodity by the sponsors is far greater than just the idea of earning more money. "Someone like a Jeev should get what the senior Indian cricketers get about 60-65 lakh, someone like a Jyoti or a Shiv should get about 30-35 lakh what the junior cricketers get," added Blah. Conventionally, endorsing an Indian golfer may not make business sense for Indian corporates but that mindset seems to be changing with cricketers proving to be frightfully expensive and of course India making its debut at the Masters. That of course will be when Jeev Milkha Singh becomes the first Indian to play at the Augusta Masters, considered the Wimbledon of golf in 2007.

Topics : Golf
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