Kapil Dev, top Indian golfers raise funds to combat COVID-19

Though for charity, the exhibition match in Delhi to raise funds was the first sporting activity in India post the COVID-19 enforced lockdown.

By Utathya Nag

Indian cricket legend Kapil Dev and former India spinner Murali Kartik teamed up with ace Indian golfers Gaganjeet Bhullar and Shubhankar Sharma, respectively, for a charity golf match to help raise funds for India’s COVID-19 relief work.

The event saw the two teams go toe to toe over 18 holes at the Delhi Golf Club before ending on level terms with a score of five-under-par. In the process, they also raised a little over Rs 45 lakhs.

“When you have Shubhankar and Kapil paaji to tee alongside, you know no quarter is going to be given as far as the sport part of it is concerned,” Gaganjeet Bhullar said after the match.

“I was very surprised to see how high on golf skills Murali Kartik has become. It was a refreshing change to play alongside them.”

Gaganjeet Bhullar, a nine-time Asian Tour winner, and Shubhankar Sharma, the 2018 Asian Tour No. 1, are among the best golfers from India currently.

Kapil Dev, India’s 1983 Cricket World Cup-winning captain, and Murali Kartik, meanwhile, are both known for their passion for golf and have been regulars at the Pro-Am circuit since retiring from cricket.

A first of its kind event

Played at the newly-renovated renovated DGC course on Saturday, the event, Champions for a Cause - Charity Golf Match, was the first domestic live sports event in India post the COVID-19-enforced nationwide lockdown.

Subhankar Sharma was delighted to be playing live golf.

“It was really good to be travelling out and playing on a Championship course after quite a break.

“Looking forward to some top competition in the coming months and this round with such top athletes will do my confidence a world of good,” he said.