Golfer Lahiri credits meditation for rise

Hoylake (England), July 16 (IANS) Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri credited Vipassna meditation for his rise as he concluded his Open Championship preparation with a practice round with US Open champion Martin Kaymer Wednesday.

The current Asian Tour No.1 enjoyed playing 18 holes at Royal Liverpool with the German who offered him valuable insight on what he needs to do to break into the world's upper echelons.

"It was a great round and awesome fun. He is a fantastic player. It was nice to play and get to know him," said Lahiri.

Two victories and 10 other top-10s, which include three runner-up finishes over the past 18 months on the Asian Tour, have seen Lahiri rise to World No.86 which has been phenomenal considering he was No.1,381 following his rookie season in 2008.

"My career graph has been on the upper trend but it's been bumpy. I've relied on meditation throughout this period which has helped me a lot. I have to try really hard to stay calm. It's not something that comes naturally to me," said the 27-year-old.

Lahiri, who tees off Thursday with EurAsia Cup teammate Koumei Oda and Ben Martin, limited his practice after his round with Kaymer due to a slight fever which he picked up earlier in the week.

"Obviously a little under the weather and jetlagged. I've got a low grade fever. It also happened to me the last time I was here in 2012. I wouldn't mind a similar finish," said Lahiri, who enjoyed a tied 31st outing at Royal Lytham and St. Annes two years ago.

Lahiri has delivered some of his best golf of late to rise to the top of the Asian Tour's rankings and the Indian knows there will be more hard working days ahead if he is to emulate the likes of Kaymer.

"The last 18 months have been tremendous. One of the good things was playing with top class players globally renowned as ball strikers like Sergio Garcia and Henrik Stenson. It was nice to play with them to know where you are against where you need to be. It's been an important part in learning in golf," said Lahiri.

"When I was a junior, I was in shock seeing how the Americans and Europeans were hitting the ball and that spurred me on. It is always nice to experience first hand where you want to go with your golf. Your perspective changes between great golf and good golf.

"It's gone in the right direction for me. I've got to keep learning although I've got some good results. I have set my goals on trying to get out here and challenging myself a bit more to play more with players of really high calibre. That's got to be the way forward for me."