Fiji, August 15: Read what the players are saying ahead of the Fiji International, which gets underway on Thursday.
Siddikur Rahman (Ban)
I am still trying to cope with the jet lag but I am really excited to be here in Fiji for the first time. I played yesterday and it was not as windy as I thought. I expect it to be windier in the next few days. Hopefully I can get a taste of the windy conditions this afternoon before the tournament starts.
The game’s feeling good. I am hoping to ride on the good momentum coming into this week. I had a superb week in Germany last month, claiming a tied-third finish on the European Tour. Things have been coming along really nicely so I am hoping for the best this week.
I take pride in my results so far this season. I am really happy with the way I have been playing. I practise a lot and I work a lot on my fitness. I am glad the efforts are paying off. I don’t set targets for myself anymore. I don’t want to myself any expectations. I just want to enjoy my game.
I think I am lucky because I tend to play better under windy conditions. I heard it can really windy here on this course but I am prepared for it.
I haven’t had time to explore Fiji but I would love to do so over the next few days. I have got a rented car so would probably drive around and check out the places here.
Rahil Gangjee (Ind)
It’s a very straightforward golf course. It’s right there in front of you, no secrets and no hidden traps. The main thing to note on this golf course is the wind.
It didn’t get really windy yesterday and it was raining today but the wind is surely going to be a factor this week.
You need to get the numbers right. You got to try and hit as many greens as possible because it’s going to be tough if you miss it. It’s hard to make up and own, especially in the wind.
I am pretty happy with the way I am playing right now. It was not that great in the first half of the season so I worked out on my short game a little bit. It’s getting better now.
It’s my first time in Fiji and it’s been phenomenal. It reminds me of Mauritius and it’s amazing.
Liu Yan Wei (Chn)
I am getting some good vibes coming here. It’s a beautiful golf course. It gets very windy but overall, it’s good. The game’s shaping up pretty nicely as well.
It’s my first time in Fiji and also my first time playing in a tri-sanctioned event. It’s been really nice and I am enjoying myself so far! It’s always nice to be near the beach.
I have had some pretty good results in the first half of the season so I hope to maintain my good form and carry it forward into the second half. I had some good opportunities to play in bigger events this season as well and that has helped me a lot in my game.
I have gained a lot of experiences playing against the top players in the world. Hopefully I can put them to good use this week. I just want to focus on preparing myself well this week. No expectations, I am just glad to be here.
Poom Saksansin (Tha)
I arrived in Fiji last night and I can’t wait to head out to play the course. I am very excited about this week. I have heard about the tough and windy conditions on course before coming here so I am prepared for it. The course looks really beautiful from what I have seen so far.
The game is in a good shape and I am feeling confident after winning my second Asian Tour title in India two weeks ago. I had a simple dinner celebration with my family when I got home from India. It’s been great so far. I just hope to bring the positive vibes into this week.
It’s a brand-new week for me and back to the starting line again this week. I just hope to play my best and get more good results heading into the remainder of the season.
“I played with the young Thai player today Jazz Janewattananond and he asked lots of questions, he’s a big talent. You can see it on the range the talent from the young players these days, it’s neat to look and see where the game is now, it’s fun to watch.” – Mike Weir, 2003 Masters champion.
Mike Weir (Can)
It’s beautiful, it’s been a bucket list item for my daughter for a long time, I’ve heard about it a lot from playing many rounds with Vijay (Singh), and it’s just a beautiful place. We just arrived yesterday morning so we played the back-nine yesterday then we went back and just had a relaxing day trying to get adjusted to the time, just spent some time at the beach and by the pool and just enjoying the resort. We’ll try to get around a little bit more as the week goes on.
I have played the full 18 holes now. They’ve done a nice job I hear with the changes from before. The course is starting to grow in nicely and the greens are rolling well and we got lucky today with not much wind.
Yesterday was quite windy and I hear it blows quite a bit here and that will make the course difficult. Today without wind, you could shoot a good score but I think with the wind it’ll be quite challenging.
I’ll probably play that mind trick with myself and say that it will, I think it’s just a nice solid ocean-side course, it gives you lots of room with the wind because the wind is such a factor and I think they’ve done a nice job planning for strategy around conditions.
That’s what a good designer does and the mark of a good golf course play to what the conditions lay out there for you, they’ve done a nice job with that.
Vijay’s been a great ambassador for Fiji and a great player worldwide, one of the best players of our generation.
To come from a country that’s far away from the mainland of golf on the PGA TOUR where he makes his home now to be able to come back and give back to his country and the tournament and support it, he talked to me about coming to support.
He’s been a friend of mine for a long time so I was glad to come and support him here.
Yeah it’s nice to see so many young and upcoming players in the field this week. When I was in their shoes as a young player I’d look to guys like Greg Norman and Mark O’Meara, Nick Price when I saw them at events I’d try to talk to them and see if I could pick up a few tips here and there.
I played with the young Thai player today Jazz (Janewattananond) and he asked lots of questions, he’s a big talent.
You can see it on the range the talent from the young players these days, it’s neat to look and see where the game is now, it’s fun to watch.