In the ongoing Tokyo Olympics, golfer Aditi Ashok missed out on her Olympic medal by a whisker. However, in pursuit, inspired a generation of golfers in the country. On August 7, she was playing the final round of the golf competition and finished at the 4th overall position. The young 23-year-old golfer from Bengaluru ended 2 strokes off pace and had a total of 15-under 269.
A country that has an ever-going love-affair with cricket and hockey, recently transformed and for a brief moment, fell in love with all things golf. The reason? One golfer from Bengaluru made the country proud by coming inches closer to an Olympic medal in golf competition.
Tokyo Olympics – Olympics for the Female Players, By the Female Players
Tokyo Olympics will be remembered by Indians as the Olympics for the female players, and by the female players. 3 out of 5 medals have been secured by female weightlifter (Mirabai Chanu), badminton player (P.V. Sindhu), & boxing (Lovlina Borgohain). On August 7, golfing star Aditi Ashok came whiskers close to securing another medal for her country. The first woman golfer at the Olympics, and Aditi had already qualified for the final of the competition.
Golf Competition Final – Shaky Start for Aditi
The first round had a mix of despair and hope for Aditi as she was able to putt par in the 4 holes, but also tied at 12th under par position with her Danish and Japanese competitor. On her fifth hole, she finally registered a clean birdie and thus secured the 13th sole position on the table. Further, another birdie on sixth hole helped her to get tied at the second spot.
Changes in Leaderboard, Disruption due to Storm
Her 7th hole at par meant that she had a three-way tie for the first position with Korda, Lydia all tied under 14. As the day progressed further, the table saw heavy shifts and changes with each passing shot. Soon, Aditi made her way to the second spot in a 3-way tie at under 14. The competition also saw a small delay when a storm hit the venue and a disruption followed.
So Close, Yet, So Far
Aditi Ashok continued to be in the medal contention for the most part of the game, but by the end, her two bogeys did a lot of harm to her prospects and New Zealand’s Lydia Ko swept past against Aditi through her 9 birdies in the final moments.
PM Modi, President Kovind, and Others Laud Aditi
Although she couldn’t secure a medal for her country, she did inspire a generation of new golfers in India. The netizens too lauded her for her accomplishments and her play. Indian President Ram Nath Kovind took to Twitter and wrote, “Well played, Aditi Ashok! One more daughter of India makes her mark! You have taken Indian golfing to new heights by today’s historic performance. You have played with immense calm and poise. Congratulations for the impressive display of grit and skills.”
Well played, Aditi Ashok! One more daughter of India makes her mark!
You have taken Indian golfing to new heights by today's historic performance. You have played with immense calm and poise. Congratulations for the impressive display of grit and skills.
— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) August 7, 2021
Prime Minister Narendra Modi too took to Twitter and wrote, “Well played @aditigolf! You have shown tremendous skill and resolve during #Tokyo2020. A medal was narrowly missed but you’ve gone farther than any Indian and blazed a trail. Best wishes for your future endeavours.”
Well played @aditigolf! You have shown tremendous skill and resolve during #Tokyo2020. A medal was narrowly missed but you’ve gone farther than any Indian and blazed a trail. Best wishes for your future endeavours.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 7, 2021
Sports Minister Anurag Thakur, cricket commentator and analyst Harsha Bhogle, BJP leader Kieren Rijiju, prominent journalist Vikram Chandra all lauded Aditi on her accomplishments.
India’s 🇮🇳 1st woman golfer
to finish 4th at Olympics Games!
Aditi Ashok, deserves a standing ovation for her exemplary performance at #Tokyo2020.
You played consistently well, had us holding our breath till the end @aditigolf !
You created history, best wishes ahead. pic.twitter.com/ZirJgzcgFw
— Anurag Thakur (@ianuragthakur) August 7, 2021
Well done #AditiAshok. So near and yet so far but that is part of the emotion and learning in sport. You will become a better player for this.
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) August 7, 2021
Aditi Ashok, you missed the Olympic medal by a whisker but you have finished at 4th spot at #Tokyo2020 !
We are proud of your achievement @aditigolf and best wishes for your future journey!#Cheer4India 🇮🇳 https://t.co/QUaeNVAJRu pic.twitter.com/tBRN3narYI
— Kiren Rijiju (@KirenRijiju) August 7, 2021
That's perhaps one of the biggest heartbreaks of theseOlympics! After a fantastic, fantastic performance over 4 days – #AditiAshok just misses a medal and finishes at the 4th position.
— Vikram Chandra (@vikramchandra) August 7, 2021
“Was anybody’s game”: Former Coach
After the game, Aditi’s former coach Tarun Sardesai spoke to ANI and said-
“It was anybody’s tournament. One stroke can make all difference. There was nothing lacking in Aditi’s game. She didn’t make any mistakes. She did well despite shaky start. I’m very happy.”