Golf has traditionally been a sport reserved for a certain cohort of societies, but in India, the rise ofwomen’s golf has seen the popular game become inclusive to all players. In 2007, the Women’s Indian Open was founded, with its tournaments sanctioned by the Ladies’ European Tour. This milestone marked the start of many success stories – one of which involves 18-year old Aditi Ashok, who won the event in 2016.
The Women’s Golf Association of India (WGAI), led by Champika Sayal, has made remarkable progress over the past few years, giving Indian women the opportunity to compete. Since its inception, many impressive players have emerged, both domestic and foreign – such as the young siblings Jahanvi and Hitaashee Bakshi. Their story of success stands as a great example to other aspiring female golfers in India.
The story of women’s golf in India is not without obstacles, however. The sport still faces a significant gender disparity, with golf courses and even practice rounds often reserved for men. There is also a lack of social and cultural acceptance, making it difficult for women to pursue and express their passion for the sport.
The Women’s Golf Association of India (WGAI) plays a key role in enabling more women to participate in golf. I everyday the organization builds more dayclubs and manages tournaments, in addition to supporting its members through mentorship and training. WGAI not only offers a platform for developing new talent, it also helps create an environment for female golfers to thrive and excel.
Aditi Ashok is also a prominent ambassador for women’s golf in India. She, alongside other female professionals, has helped empower young female golfers, who are now able to chase their dreams without discrimination. What has been achieved in such a short time, simply through passion and dedication, is remarkable and inspiring.
The journey of women’s golf in India is only just beginning. Although there is still a long way to go until it reaches the level of acceptance it deserves, it is an exciting time for India’s growth as a nation and its strong commitment to the development of its female golfers. Onwards and upwards we go.