EurAsia Cup - Preview What They Said

Wed 26 Mar 2014

EurAsia Cup - Preview What They Said

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March 26: Read what players have to say before the start of the inaugural EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM on Thursday.
TEAM ASIA
Thongchai Jaidee (Tha)
I would say Team Europe is very strong today.  We played with Miguel in the first match and he played great.
I tried to get some points at the start but we ended up losing all the matches. We will try again tomorrow. We have a change of game plan tomorrow, we change all the people, all the players different tomorrow except myself.  We will work really hard tomorrow.
We must make some points tomorrow to win our match.  It is not going to be easy. That's why I changed the players around and hopefully we can get some points back.
You never know, tomorrow Europe, you can see the result, they played so well today, they made a lot of birdies and a lot of eagles.  The course is good, if you keep the ball on the fairway, it's easy to attack the pin.  And also, the putts are so well today.  You see Miguel putting unbelievable today.
The weather was so hot today.  My players were good too but they made some mistakes. They made good birdies, and they have very good team work.
Team Europe has more experience than our team.  I would like my team to just enjoy the golf game and feel comfortable out there.
Nicholas played well today, except last two holes, he lost on 16.  He did well, 3-up after seven, and then he lost on 8 and 9 because the guy putting, he made some. He played a lot of time here.
Foursome, alternate-shot, it's going to be tough. I think it's not easier than the four-ball.  You have to play different game, not your own game as you have to alternate. You have to concentrate and ensure a solid game so you don't miss anything.  I’ve changed my plan a little bit. Tomorrow is going to be fun. I’m looking forward to the next two rounds.
Nicholas Fung (Mas)
I’m so happy that I’m playing against Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland. Now I have that chance to do so. Kim Hyung-sung is such a good player. He played well on the Japan Golf Tour last year and his game is still solid. I’ve achieved my dream of playing with McDowell so now I can do better and win.
In this sort of format, you need to get as many birdies as you can. I average about five or six birdies on this golf course so hopefully I can get more than that to win the match.
We know each other very well. The team mood is good. The atmosphere is great and the Japanese guys are really funny! Actually all of us have been joking around and having fun. This relax mood will definitely help us.
Thongchai (Jaidee) believes in us and he wants us to play our own game. He is very confident we can beat Team Europe. He asked us to go out and have fun and not put too much pressure on ourselves. He told us not to be so stressed out but maintain a more relaxed mood by playing pool and ping pong in the team room.
I have home advantage and the crowd will be following my group. I know both of them are good players and hopefully we can give them a good fight. I’m ready to go for the attack tomorrow.
Siddikur Rahman (Ban)
I feel proud that I can represent Team Asia. I’m also very happy because I’m playing with Prayad Marksaeng. I’ve played with him on a couple of occasions and he is a friend of mine. I’m very confident with this combination. I think both of us and Team Asia are very strong. I’m really excited about tomorrow.
Our game combines very well. I’m a consistent player and Prayad is a long hitter and aggressive player. I played two practice rounds and this match really suits my eye. I’m happy that we are playing on this golf course.
Team Asia is in a very positive mood. We really have good strength in the team. Thongchai (Jaidee) is truly an inspiration to us. He has won so many tournaments and his experience will help us. Prayad is a very funny guy so it will be a fun day!
I don’t put pressure on myself when I play in any tournaments. This is a big tournament and it will be a good experience for me. I’m happy with the support which I’ve received so far and that will help me when the tournament starts.
KIM Hyung-sung (Kor)
It's going to be an exciting experience for me. I've played in a lot of big events last year and this year, so the experience will help me to compete better tomorrow.  For Nicholas and I, we have never played or competed with each other for a while, so I think tomorrow as we play 18 holes together, hopefully it will be shorter, but as we play 18 holes, we'll mesh together and we'll have a big combination. So we're looking forward to playing this match with G-Mac and Donaldson, and hopefully it's a fun match and hopefully we'll get it done in a very quick fashion.
Gaganjeet BHULLAR (IND)
Well, you know, obviously you play for your country, and then you play for Asia.  These are probably two biggest things you can do as a professional golfer.
In this format, this is the biggest event for Asia, at least for the moment, and it's fantastic that we have the opportunity of having the Indian flag stamped out there tomorrow when we go out.
I think as the week has progressed, things have gotten more and more and more relaxed.  Guys have gotten to know each other.  People are pulling each other's legs and there are some jokes and it's the kind of atmosphere that you need.  Everybody obviously is here to give their best and win this trophy and everybody knows that, but it's nice that when we are here, it's good we can take our minds off and really relax.
Anirban LAHIRI (IND)
I've played with a lot of the Europeans and I think tomorrow is going to be a really tough match.  Both guys have won a few times on Tour but if you look on our side, we are hungry to go out there and just to make a name for our country and continent.  I wouldn't be surprised if we win this trophy.
It's quite cool to see people speaking different languages within the same dressing room.  The guys play on our tour and every week we see different faces, different Nationals but for the first time many guys are paired up as a team and the guys are gelling with each other really well.
Bhullar and I played two practice rounds and put our minds together and then came up with a few other options.  But Captain TJ came up with this one and we are comfortable playing with each other.  Of course we have been playing together from junior days, and if you look at the other four games, everybody knows each other's game on the other team.
TEAM EUROPE
Miguel Angel Jimenez
The draw looks very nice to me. This event is different from we used to play normally.  Normally we play stroke play and you play for yourself.  When you play a team event like this one, you know, like this EurAsia Cup, you play a partner; you play for yourself; you play for your team; and you play for your continent.  The pressure is different.  When you miss a shot and then you miss a shot and, you miss a shot, but when you miss a shot, it's not only you, it's about your family and what it means about it.
Conditions very hot today, very humid, but it's nice.  It's normal here.  We know what happens here.  When we are coming time after time, you never are expecting it to not be the same, you know.
Well, it's going to be a tough match for me.  You know, Pablo and myself, we are playing well and we know how they are playing. Thongchai Jaidee and Kiradech Aphibarnrat are playing well too.  It's going to be a very tough match.  We don't know what's going to happen.  I think to put myself in the first group to see how the rest of the group are doing.  Obviously Thongchai is thinking the same thing and we are going head-to-head tomorrow.  We shall let the golf clubs do the talking tomorrow.
Being a playing captain, you have to take care of all the things. You have to be in the media more than anyone else. The condition of the golf course is very nice condition.  I hear that a few weeks ago the condition is not that good, but having played here the last few days, I think it is looking great.
European Tour player Paul McGinley is coming here this week and he wants to see what is going on with this EurAsia Cup.  So many of the players are already qualifying and some of them are going to be qualified are playing here.  He wants to see also the new guys and he wants to know with the players that are already in, like Thomas here on my side, and Gonzo is close, Stephen is almost there, too.  He wants to see all these guys, how they play.  It's for the future and I think it's good to come here.
Thomas Bjorn
It's a pretty obvious choice for partner.  We get on well.  He's a wonderful player, Thorbjørn, and he's got a great future ahead of him.  Ever since he came on the Tour, we have been great friends and to take that out on the golf course now is going to be interesting.  It's going to be very exciting I think for the both of us.
Our opponents are very strong and successful Japanese players.  I am very fortunate to have played quite a bit of golf in Japan and I know the qualities of the players out there, so the worst thing to do this week is to underestimate any of the 20 players here.  Everybody is very capable and they will go out, and there's nothing more exciting to play in a team event and play with one of your competitors.
Stephen Gallacher
I know Gonzo very well.  He has obviously been on the Tour for a long time and I’ve played with him a couple of weeks back in America.  My family name is Spanish if that means anything, but like Thomas said, we are playing with some good players here. They have played on our Tour before and the standard of the Asian Tour players here are very high.  You know you need to play well if you want to win.  It's as simple as that.
Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño
Well, it's a good atmosphere on the team, that's for sure.  Miguel knows how to make everybody happy and excited about the week.  I don't know, I think it's a very exciting week ahead.  This first edition of the EurAsia Cup, I think it's one of those tournaments that we are looking forward to play.  There's a lot of potential here in Asia.  Golf is growing so fast, and I think this might become one of the biggest and most important events in the world, probably in the near future.