India’s women’s professional golf circuit was missing her for some time. But a fitter and determined Sharmila Nicollet is now ready to take on the world. The 12-time champion on the Hero Women’s Pro Tour is training in the US under coach Gary Gilchrist to boost her chances of winning an international crown soon.
“It’s been a while since I played professionally. I have been training under Gary near Orlando for the past 3 months. He made a lot of changes to my game and my life. I felt it is time I needed to make certain changes to reach where I want to be. I have started to enjoy the process with the new swing. It’s always good to have a new perspective about the game. The practice facilities and the technology in Orlando are really good. It’s going to take me a while to trust those changes. I haven’t played any tournaments in the last 6 months but I will enter new tournaments with a positive mindset,” Sharmila told Golf Digest India on the sidelines of the Krishnapatnam Port Golden Eagles Championship.
“I have got a brilliant mentor in Gary. He is one of the best coaches in the world. What Gary brings to the table is he makes practice a fun activity. I really enjoyed it and I am hitting 10-15 yards longer with my new swing,” she added.
The 26-year-old put up a brave fight before missing out on a Ladies European Tour (LET) spot following a disappointing 77 in the fifth & final round of the Lalla Aicha Tour School in Morocco.
“I had to sacrifice many tournaments as I was training in the US. You have to devote at least 3 months if you want to make changes to your game. Hopefully I will have a good start to the new season.
“I will go to the USLPGA Q-School next. If I get a few starts like I got last season (ShopRite Classic), and if I capitalise on them, it will be huge,” the 5’11” Bengaluru lass confirmed.
Sharmila has hired a new fitness trainer too (Nicolas from France) and one can see the results on her Instagram account – she looks a lot fitter thanks to extra hours in the gym.
She is the only woman’s professional to have walked the ramp for several top designers. And whenever her performances take a dip, the critics get a chance to take a dig at her affinity towards fashion. “This has been there since I was a kid. I do whatever I have to do. If I am doing things right, people don’t say anything. You just got to take it in good spirit,” the style icon signed off.
(Read more in the January issue of Golf Digest India. Download here.)