Happy Garcia Hopes to Build on Good Start

Thu 06 Dec 2012

Happy Garcia Hopes to Build on Good Start


Chonburi, Thailand, December 6: Spaniard Sergio Garcia was beaming after carding a three-under-par 69 in the opening round of the Thailand Golf Championship on Thursday which was a seven-shot improvement from last year’s opening effort.

The Ryder Cup star, who won once on the PGA Tour this season, produced some sensational golf at the Amata Spring Country Club as he moved up the leaderboard on five-under through 15 holes.

But his round came unstuck at the ankle-deep rough on the 16th hole. A wayward tee shot ended in the thick stuff and a few hacks later, he staggered with a double bogey which saw him end the day four back of leader Charl Schwartzel of South Africa.

“Played nicely … started nicely but I got a little unlucky on the second. Struggled a little on the back nine and hit a few bad shots here and there. I hit it into the rough three times but every time I was in there, it was a horrendous lie and I could only advance it 15 or 20 yards farther,” said Garcia.

“Unfortunately, I had a bit of an error on 16. I didn’t hit a good tee shot and had a terrible lie and I tried to get it out with a nine iron and couldn’t get it out. At the end of the day, it’s not a bad round. It’s a much better start than last year and I hope to keep doing that.”

With winds picking up in the afternoon which brought some respite from the heat and humidity, Garcia is ready to throw in a title challenge at the weekend.

“I feel okay. I’m looking forward to my holidays but I feel good. They’ve been treating us great here in Thailand,” said Garcia, who will end his season at the Iskandar Johor Open in Malaysia next week.

“It was definitely tougher in the afternoon. There were some winds out there and the greens got bumpier towards the end. I played okay for a while and then I had some unfortunate lies.

“There’re still three rounds to go. Hopefully I can play a little bit better tomorrow and shoot a good score and get myself in a good position for the weekend. I need to hit the ball a bit better than on the back nine for sure.”