Taipei, October 2: Read what players have to say following the second round of the US$650,000 Mercuries Taiwan Masters on Friday.
Rashid Khan (Ind) – Second round 70 (-2), Total 138 (-6)
I started really bad. I made a double-bogey on the first hole. I hit it into the bunker and I had to chip it out. I hit it onto the green but three-putted. That was a very disappointing start but I didn’t let you affect my game. I holed a 15-footer on the next hole for par and I gained a little confidence from there.
I had three straight birdies starting from the fifth which got my game going heading into the round. I chipped in from greenside bunker on the fifth and made up and down there. I told my caddy if I can shoot three or four-under par, it will be good. But I three-putted on the ninth again. I kept the ball in play on the back nine, made another three birdies although I three-putted on 17th. I holed a six-footer putt for birdie on the 18th which was a good finish to the round.
Overall, I was feeling confident with my game but my short game just wasn’t as good today. I didn’t putt well and my chipping was not good as I didn’t manage to control the distance at all. My ball striking was good. I was able to find most of the fairways and greens out there. That helped today.
I am going to work on my short game a little bit more so I can have more control on my distance in the next two rounds. The playing conditions out there was totally different compared to yesterday. With the way I started, I must say I played really well, except for my short game and I am happy to be in the lead today.
This is my first time playing the Mercuries Taiwan Masters and it’s nice to be here. This season hasn’t been great for me so far but like I said earlier, I practiced a lot and it’s good to see the efforts paying off. I just need a good result to get back my confidence for the remaining season. Hopefully it will be this week. This is the first time I played with Danny and it was nice. We were just playing our own games and it’s only the second round. We didn’t want to push ourselves that much. It’s going to be a good fight heading into the last two rounds. Anyone can shoot a low score out here.
Danny Chia (Mas) – Second round 72 (even par), Total 139 (-5)
I think there’s nothing bad about my round but it wasn’t good either. It’s hard for me to say because it was really windy out there. I feel good hitting every shot but the ball is just going everywhere. I don’t know if the wind is affecting it or if it’s because I didn’t hit the shot well. It’s always like that whenever I come to play on this course. Therefore, I always tell myself to avoid the bogeys whenever I play here.
I guess playing conservatively is probably the best option out here. If I can save par, I try to save par. I try not to focus so much on my swing. You will have an advantage if you can read the greens. Like Rashid, he will able to hit a lot of greens today. Putting will be the key too. I felt like I hit the ball well today but the ball went left and right. So I think putting is the key to play well here.
This season has been good to me. Whatever I have been working on is starting to pay off right now. I am playing some good golf and I am pretty happy with how I played so far. I have been doing a bit of physio workout this year, instead of the usual practice routine. I’m sticking with this UMW program on the road to the Olympics back home in Malaysia and that has helped quite a bit.
It was good playing with Rashid today. I think we kind of fit into each other’s game on the course. He played well today and managed to get a few up-and-downs too. I think it’s going to be fun playing with him again tomorrow.
It’s always nice coming to Chinese Taipei, especially having won here before in 2002, although we are playing in a different course this week. I remembered that week was hit by a typhoon as well. I always liked to be here. I love the food here and the people are very nice too. We still have two more rounds to go, hopefully I can continue to stay up there.
Antonio Lascuna (Phi) – Second round 71 (-1), Total 143 (-1)
My putting was good and I drove the ball well today too. You have to be good off the tee to play well on this course. I thought my game was pretty steady given the tough conditions out there. The winds were blowing strong and the greens are grainy but this is the Tamsui course that I used to know!
I finished well here last year and that has given me a bit of confidence coming to this week. The way I tackled the course these two days were pretty similar to how I played last year. If I can play like how I did last year, I should have a chance to win this week.
Siddikur Rahman (Ban) – Second round 74 (+2), Total 143 (-1)
I started off well actually. I had a lot of birdies as well as a lot of bogeys. I had a 12-yard chip-in for birdie on the ninth hole which was a good finish to the round. It was really challenging out there. The winds were strong and there were more gusts today. It was hard to determine the wind directions and all. So I’m happy with how I played, given the tough conditions.
I’m happy with where I stand at the moment. Two more days to go. We will see what happens. I can say I am 90% recovered from the back injury last year. I go to the physios during tournament week and it helps. It’s improving everyday.