PARIS: Thailand’s top-ranked Kiradech Aphibarnrat has already shed close to 20 kilograms and given away dozens of shirts and trousers as he continues on a massive weight-reduction campaign that has seen tangible benefits to his form.
The European Tour website once listed Kiradech’s weight as 120 kilograms but that was some four months ago before the Bangkok-born golfer decided to lose weight.
The 28-year-old currently weighs 108 kilograms with a goal of getting down to 105.
This decision has been prompted by a move at the start of the season to work with renowned England-born coach Peter Cowen.
“I just thought now that I am working with Peter that it would be an ideal time to lose some weight and get myself stronger,” he said.
“I feel that when I can get my swing to the position Peter and I are working towards then I can keep trying to lose more weight.
“All I am doing to watching closely what I do eat and try to eat more heathier foods while I have started working out and that is something I have never undertaken before.
“I have been on the Asian Tour and European Tour for 11 years without walking into any sort of gym whatever and wouldn’t know what a treadmill is.
“So, I have started going to the gym back home with my good friends who I grew up with and I do feel everything is going the right way.”
Kiradech’s weight-loss program has certainly kept his clothing attire and sponsors busy given the large number of shirts he says he has sought only to find a fortnight later the shirts are far too big for him.
“Losing so much weight has meant I have dozens of new shirts and trousers that no longer fit me but then my father is happy as he is the same weight I was before I started losing weight,” he said smiling.
Kiradech compete will this week in European Tour’s Nedbank Golf Challenge at Sun City in South Africa.
It will be his 10th event in a marathon run of 11 weeks and a journey that has taken Kiradech to the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Holland, Portugal, Britain, Italy, China, Turkey and now South Africa.
In this time, he has enjoyed three top-10s including finishing runner-up in the Italian Open and then last week sharing the lead heading to the last round of the Turkish Airlines Open before ending tied sixth.
The efforts see Kiradech lying 19th on the Race to Dubai and already assured of ending the European Tour season next week in Dubai inside the top-30 to automatically qualify for next year’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.
“The way I have been playing the last three months or so is really awesome,” he said.
“I am getting really comfortable with my swing since working with Peter and the move to working with him has been great for my game.
“Losing all this weight has made me feel so much better and stronger walking the golf course and before I used to feel very tired but in getting stronger as I am, I am recovering much quicker than I used to.”