HKO Rd 1 What They Said

Thu 16 Oct 2014

HKO Rd 1 What They Said

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Jyoti Randhawa (Ind) – First Round 64 (-6)
Q.  Happy with your start?
JYOTI RANDHAWA: For me, it's really awesome because I've been playing decent in the last few weeks but haven't been able to putt up a good number.  Today I really putted my heart out, so I'm really happy with the way it went, and I'm glad I got the pace on the greens right.
Q.  You know this place well and you've come here for years.  It doesn't give up scores easily, does it?
JYOTI RANDHAWA:  Yeah, the golf course is playing a little easier than past years because the greens are soft and the fairways are soft, so you know you can really attack them.  This is the first time I've played this golf course being so soft.  It used to be very hard when you play in November.  You have to lay up your shots and run it up.
Right now you can go straight for the flags.  That does help a little bit, but the rough is up and if you hit it in the rough, then it's tough.  But you've got to putt, so I putted well and that's the score.
Q.  You'd better put the score in context because you've been playing pretty well on the Asian Tour, haven't you?
JYOTI RANDHAWA:  Yeah, I've had some decent finishes, just trying to get four rounds together.  Hopefully this week, if I can do that, it will be great.  Leader in the clubhouse right now, I'm very happy with the way I played today.
Q.  And yet from a European Tour perspective, where have you been?  We haven't seen you for so long.
JYOTI RANDHAWA:  I lost my card a few years back, and I'm just trying to get my game right.  You know, I think it's working right now, so let's hope I can put a few numbers together and get back on The European Tour.
Q.  I know you had some injury issues, as well.  Are they nicely behind you or something that you manage?
JYOTI RANDHAWA:  Yeah, well, I'm not getting any younger, so I've got to keep fitter.  Injuries come, but I'm quite good right now.
Jyoti Randhawa of India Jyoti Randhawa of India
Q.  Still plenty of ambition in this game, I'm sure.
JYOTI RANDHAWA:  This is one game you can really play for a long time, so I'm hoping my better years are yet to come.
Q.  You talk about getting fitter; has your regime changed?
JYOTI RANDHAWA:   Yeah, I've been working out at home, the three months I had off, so been working on my physical fitness with my coach.  He's in India.  We've been doing a lot of cardio and just legs, lower part, building my lower body.
Because of the swing change, I'm a little better, swinging more from the inside than the outside and I have a more stable base, so my base was not that strong.  Still is not that strong, but I'm working on it.
Angelo Que (Phi) – First Round 65 (-5)
Q. How good was the five-under?
It was really good. I putted like a maniac today. I holed a lot of six footers for pars on the first few holes then I started to hit it better and holed a few more putts. I kept it going. Five-under and bogey free is a really good start for me.
Q. You are enjoying some good form?
I haven’t had a bogey free round this year and it is already October! I’ve been hitting the ball quite good. I’ve been struggling with the putter for a few months. I’ve been working with my putter when I was home last week and I think that’s helped.
Q. Which was your best birdie?
My first birdie was on the 15th hole (started on 11) from 40-foot putt. I wanted to put it near the hole but it went in and I thought to myself “well that’s a start”. I hit my putt too soft on the next hole and it still went in and that’s when I told myself that it could be my day.
Q. Must enjoy coming back to the Hong Kong Open?
I love the ambiance in this event. I always enjoyed coming and playing here. I think it is a great event and definitely one of my favourite events.
ERNIE ELS (Rsa) – First Round 66 (-4)
ERNIE ELS:  I needed a good one to start off, especially in the afternoon on the first day, it can get a little sideways.  I kept it together for the most part.  Actually I had quite a few opportunities on the back, so I'm quite pleased with that obviously.
Q.  Clearly you saw the course in the Pro Am but is it difficult playing it in competition?  Is it everything you expected?
ERNIE ELS:  The course played a bit shorter.  I played yesterday morning so there was a bit more run in the fairways, which is quite nice.  The greens ran beautiful.  They have really got the greens on some good supervision, so I'm sure it's going to get quicker through the week.  But it was a real pleasure to play it today.
Q.  So many cases and times where you say, it could have been better, that's the nature of golf but one of the days where you give yourself plenty of chances?
ERNIE ELS:  Especially on the back nine, I missed three very makeable putts.  But I think on the front nine, I made up for it.
So I think all in all, you know, if people    if they had the cameras with us on the front, you'd have thought I was a 7 handicap.  But pulled it together and played much better on the back nine.
Q.  You have a nice gauge on the history of the event, had a good tour of the clubhouse and facilities?
ERNIE ELS:  Absolutely.  The captain gave me the full treatment this morning.  Showed me everything, gave me the history lesson of the whole thing.  It's quite something.  It's a very unique club with wonderful membership and wonderful champions.  I saw the list and it's a Who's Who of golf.  But I don't even want to think about that.  Let's talk about trying to get a good round tomorrow and take it from there.
You know, it really doesn't matter where you are now.  You want to have a good round the first day.  It's easy to shoot yourself out of it.  At first there's quite a lot of pressure and then you take it from there.  Each day, it's like a session in cricket.  You take the session and do as best as you can, and then it all happens on Sunday afternoon.
Q.  Are you going to work on your putting this afternoon?
Hong Kong Open - Day OneERNIE ELS:  Yeah, I think I did miss three very makeable ones on the back nine on 14 and 15 and probably 18, also.  So those hurt a little bit but I felt like I hit good putts.  It's just I didn't quite read them the correct way but I feel like I'm putting it solidly.  On the front nine, I made quite a few as I said.
Q.  The defending champion, he's a bit sick with food poisoning.  Will that boost your confidence to get into
ERNIE ELS:  No, no, no.  It's not me against the Spaniard (laughter).  You know, I feel for Miguel.  I've had that over here.  It's not a lot of fun.  Food poisoning, playing a tournament where you won four times must be tough.  So you've got to feel for him.  But, you know, there's a hundred    not sure how many are in the field, 155 that you've got to try and beat.  So there's a lot of great players out here, a lot of good talent.  So you've just got to keep going.
Q.  Are you happy with what you achieved today?
ERNIE ELS:  Yeah, as I say, could have been probably in the lead, but my uncle and my auntie and my auntie could have been my uncle.  So those are things that happen.  If you can pull out everything in a round of golf, you'd be probably the first one.  You're going to miss some shots.  I've got to be pleased with that and I'm looking forward to tomorrow morning where I can hopefully get something going.
Q.  How about tomorrow?  Tomorrow is your birthday.
ERNIE ELS:  Yeah.  That's why I've got an early time so I can celebrate big in the afternoon (laughter).
Nicolas Colsaerts (Bel) First Round 66 (-3)
Q.  Tell me how good 4 under par is around here?
NICOLAS COLSAERTS:  Well, you need to play good to shoot any score under par I think.  You easily get yourself in trouble if you don't hit the fairway, you don't really get it close, because the greens are rolling quite fast.
So, yeah, from tee to green, you need to be pretty good to give yourself birdie chances.  The greens are pretty slick, and when you play in the morning, you notice once you go past, like 11 o'clock, you can see the grain coming in more to play on the grain, so that's the tricky part.  But yeah, I'm quite happy with my score.
Q.  You're a man who came mightily close to a 59 in Portugal and this is a par 70, very short course.
NICOLAS COLSAERTS:  I'm curious to know how many times some of the guys got close to 60, how many chances they had.  I'm curious to see how close I can get to another 59 again.  I don't think you can go that low out here.  You really need to be on an A++ kind of game to give yourself that kind of chance on this course.
Q.  That was my point, really, that this course doesn't give up those kind of scores.  It's old style, a lot of strategy involved.
NICOLAS COLSAERTS:  Yeah, you know, most of the greens slope from back to front and if you're over the hole, then you're basically just lagging it even if you're pretty close.  You need to be under the holes all the time to give yourself really good looks at it, and even if you're pin high, you're coming out with a lot of slope on them, and like I said, grain.  We haven't played bermudagrass for quite some time so takes a little bit of adjustment.  I'll be curious to see how the Europeans play this week.
Q.  You've come from Portugal, other side of the world; how are you?
NICOLAS COLSAERTS:  I'm okay.  I'm waking up in the middle of the night.  None of my bags showed up until Wednesday morning probably two hours before the Pro Am.  I didn't do a very good effort at trying to get into the jet lag, and done pretty badly.
So I think I'm going to be up or waking up quite early in the middle of the night for most of the week, but that's fine.
Danny Chia (Mas) – First Round 67 (-3)
Q.  Thoughts on the day?
DANNY CHIA:  Hit some bad shots but still give myself a lot of birdie opportunity.  It's okay.
Q.  What was good in your round today?
DANNY CHIA:  My short putt was pretty solid today, because actually I got a bit of a problem judging the green speed.  A lot of my putts are like four feet past, five feet past, and I'm making the return putts, so that's good, yeah.
Q.  Considering what happened, good result for the first round?
Danny Chia of Malaysia Danny Chia of Malaysia
DANNY CHIA:  Yeah.
Q.  How has your record been on this golf course?  Has it been a good place for you?
DANNY CHIA:  It's okay.  It's always been a golf course that you really need to stay patient, and hit a lot of good iron shots here actually.  This year I think they have grown the rough a little bit, and so hit the fairways to give yourself an opportunity to hit the green is very important.
Q.  Game seems to be gradually improving?
DANNY CHIA:  Yeah, I've been more consistent now.  Been hitting a lot of fairway and greens.  Still the main priority for me, hopefully I can get back all my strength and body condition is what I'm concentrating at the moment.
Q.  Are you still feeling not 100 per cent healthy?
DANNY CHIA:  Just I get tired really quick on my right shoulder, like especially when I'm facing like two, three weeks in a row stress and I'll get really weak on my right shoulder.  That's the only thing I worry about actually.
Q.  Do you practise less during tournament weeks?
DANNY CHIA:  Less, actually I do a bit more putting and chipping.  But don't spend so much time hitting.
MIGUEL ÁNGEL JIMÉNEZ – First Round 72 (+2)
Q.  Probably pretty happy with two over in those conditions?
MIGUEL ÁNGEL JIMÉNEZ:  Well, it's fine.  You know, it's a pity, I'm coming here and I'm sick.  But I tried to do my best today and 2 over.
Q.  Was it dinner last night?
MIGUEL ÁNGEL JIMÉNEZ:  Don't know if something last night or the night before.  I'm sorry for that, but I'm a professional and I'm coming here to play but my body    it was something that I don't eat, something not very good and I've been not sleeping, nothing at night, and I've been all day (indicating ill).
Q.  Is it hard to get around?
MIGUEL ÁNGEL JIMÉNEZ:  Well, you have only two slopes on the second and the third, and on the way to the tee    that's it, but it's a pity.  Three more days.  I'm going to rest this afternoon and hopefully I'll be back tomorrow.
I'm going to get something that helps now.  I think my body now can sustain something.
Q.  What was it you ate?
MIGUEL ÁNGEL JIMÉNEZ:  I had seafood before.  Last night we have some    I don't know, maybe the ice, I don't know.  I've been very sick all night.
Q.  Are you confident that when you get better, you can move up the leaderboard?
MIGUEL ÁNGEL JIMÉNEZ:  I think so.  I think so, yeah.  I've been hitting good.  I make only one birdie but I saved a couple of good pars, and then I missed a couple of birdies, also.