Lahiri targets Macao Open defence after Incheon heartbreak

Sport360 staff 07:37 15/10/2015
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Disappointment: Lahiri.

Indian ace Anirban Lahiri is aiming to successfully defend his Venetian Macao Open title starting on Thursday, saying he has overcome his Presidents Cup heartbreak.

– Presidents Cup: Kirk ‘hated’ seeing Lahiri miss putt
– Portugal Masters: Levy hoping for repeat triumph
– GALLERY: The Presidents Cup’s past winners

Lahiri, the current Asian Tour Order of Merit leader, declared he is ready to launch a final push to become the region’s new No. 1 starting with this week’s $1 million event which has attracted a stellar field.

It includes four-time Major winner Ernie Els, 2013 champion Scott Hendand and eight of the current top-10 players from the Merit list.

“It was a disappointing result but it was certainly not a disappointment,” reflected Lahiri, who missed a three-foot birdie putt for a half point that could have altered the end result of the Presidents Cup.

“What we witnessed is exactly the nature of the sport. What I experienced was what Scott (Hend) experienced here last year. We both hit good putts and it didn’t go in.

“Sometimes you’re on the receiving end. You take it in your stride and take whatever you need to do to get better.”

Lahiri revealed he slept easily on Sunday night knowing he had stuck to his process and routine before hitting his putt. The United States of America beat the Internationals by one point.

“Obviously, you reflect on it. I thought to myself ‘what did I do wrong’ and I couldn’t come up with an answer. If you can’t come up with an answer, you can sleep peacefully and I did,” said the world No. 39.

“I followed my process, I was focused and I tried my heart out. I hit the shots exactly how I saw it, even with the last putt. There’s nothing I regret but I feel bad about it as the team had worked hard.”

After winning the Venetian Macao Open some 12 months ago, the 28-year-old Lahiri went on to win in Malaysia and India in February and has since enjoyed a magical season which included a top-five finish at the PGA Championship and earning a card on the PGA Tour.

His goal now is to wrap up the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit title and join compatriots Arjun Atwal, Jeev Milkha Singh and Jyoti Randhawa as the only Indian golfers to have won the Merit list.

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