Akshay Bhatia, the world’s top-ranked junior player who recently won the boys’ division of the 2019 Dustin Johnson World Junior Golf Championship at TPC Myrtle Beach, is taking the next step in his quest to turn professional as he prepares to compete in the PGA TOUR’s Valspar Championship this week on a sponsor’s exemption.
Bhatia, who is coached by Allen Terrell at the Dustin Johnson Golf School, won the World Junior in runaway fashion earlier this month, finishing six strokes clear of the field with a 54-hole scoring mark (-10) that tied the TPC Myrtle Beach competitive record initially set in 2007 by East Tennessee State University’s Rhys Davies during the General Hackler Championship. Now, he’ll test his game against the world’s top golfers as he continues his current quest to forgo college golf and turn professional upon turning 18 in January 2020.
Ironically, among Bhatia’s competitors this week is none other than the world’s top-ranked golfer at whose golf school Bhatia trains. Dustin Johnson is joined in this week’s Valspar field by several players who contended in last week’s THE PLAYERS, including Jason Day, Webb Simpson, Jim Furyk and John Rahm.
Alan Blondin of the Myrtle Beach Sun-News offers a comprehensive profile of Bhatia here – where, beyond his preparations for this week’s event, the piece chronicles Bhatia’s rise to prominence; the dominance he’s displayed on the junior golf circuit; and the tag-team instruction approach Terrell and his school have engaged in to prepare him for the next step.