Kuala Lumpur: The first time Anirban Lahiri came into prominence on the Asian Tour, it wasn't quite due to the fact he had produced wonders in a golf tournament. Back in November of 2008, a wide-eyed Lahiri couldn't believe his luck when he got into the Singapore Open as the first alternate following Ian Poulter's withdrawal at the 11th hour and the young Indian stepped onto the first tee in the company of Major champion Phil Mickelson and Asia's great Thaworn Wiratchant.
"That was my claim to fame back then," Lahiri laughed. It was indeed a baptism of fire which backfired as rounds of 80 and 76 saw him finish ahead of only six other golfers in the field of 150.
Fast forward to 2014 and Lahiri now sits happily at the summit of the Asian Tour's Order of Merit following a superb start to the season where he was victorious at the Indonesian Masters, courtesy of a sensational eagle on the 72nd hole, and three other top-10s.
The 26-year-old Lahiri's transformation from one of India's leading amateur golfers to the country's leading player on the Official World Golf Ranking is nothing short of hard work, dedication and pure focus.