Gulf News exclusively caught up with 40 year-old Dubai based Shiv Kapur prior to his return from injury to play on the 2023 Asian Tour.
Shiv, tell us about your off-season?
Firstly, I picked up an injury in September. My last event before the injury was in the Mercuries Taiwan Masters on the Asian Tour. I was very pleased with my top 10 finish there. I came home to Dubai after Taiwan to rest and recover and planned to go again out on the Asian Tour for the remainder of 2022.
I had an MRI and various other tests and found out that I had a stress fracture of the seventh rib, that I had apparently been playing with for a while. It came about from an overload on my body. I am not sure exactly when it happened.
Now I am in my fifth decade, age and fitness are especially important for all athletes. I missed the last six events on the Asian Tour and took 2 ½ months off.
How has your rehabilitation been?
It has all been about rest. My first event back was three weeks ago, the Tour Championship in India – where I finished tied second on the Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI). I had rounds of 64, 69, 70 and 67 to be 18 under-par. That was a confidence booster.
How is your game now?
I have had my golf coach, American Shane Gillespie out here in Dubai the last 10 days or so, preparing me for the start of 2023. I have been with Shane for 5 years, previously he coached at La Costa and then at TPC at Sawgrass.
We have been working on my game, I feel in a good place and we have put together a performance programme. My short game is excellent, there was nothing else I could do over the break! I suggest I am 75% there now. I have lost some swing speed and a priority has been trying to get my speed up.
What is your schedule like for the first part of 2023?
I am really looking forward to playing on the Asian Tour from next week, in the Saudi International, Oman and Qatar, the last two International Series events.
It is going to be a busy start to the season. I am playing seven out of the next eight weeks including the Indian Open on the DP World Tour. I will be coming back after most events as it is important for me to keep the connection with my family and Dubai. I will see how I play and how my body holds up, then I will decide my schedule moving forward for the rest of the year.