#MaybankChampionship Rd 1 What They Said

Thu 18 Feb 2016

#MaybankChampionship Rd 1 What They Said

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Nathan Holman (Aus) - First round 64 (-7)
How good is seven under out there?
I think it's pretty good. There's a lot of chances still, but you get in the rough and it can really grab you so seven under, I'm really happy with that.
What is it you've done well?
I just played really well to be honest. Every part of my game was quite good and I was saying a few weeks ago that my game has been trending in that right direction so it was nice to get a really good one in.
This certainly seems to be a tricky course and you've got the conditions to deal with as well.
Yeah, it's hot. It is very tricky but today the cloud cover is quite nice and kept temperatures down a little bit which is comfortable to play out there. It was good.
Your kind of course? Do you like this old style?
It suits my eye. I quite like the look of it and obviously that's shown through with the score I had today so I'm looking forward to playing the next three days.
Good to play with K.T. Kim as well, shooting a nice score?
It's always good when you can play well together and just keep ticking along and keep pulling each other along, it's good.
Your form is always up there on a nice level.
Yeah, it's good. I'm playing fairly consistently and consistently getting better which is another good thing so I'm looking forward to the next few weeks.
Angelo Que of Philippines Angelo Que of Philippines
Angelo Que (Phi) – First Round 65 (-6)
I holed a lot of putts and that’s what you need to do in a tournament, especially on this course. I did that today. It is hard to hit it close if you miss the fairways. Luckily for me, I read the lines and holed my putts.
I like old style layouts where you have to work the ball a little bit. The course isn’t that long and I like that. Malaysia has been good to me. I played well a lot here in Malaysia in the past 14 years.
You don’t need to hit a lot of drivers here. You need to keep the ball in play and find your way around the golf course. I like playing that way where you have to think. This week I’m really focussed on what I need to do on the course to stay in the game.
The weather is so much cooler as compared to other Malaysian events we have. It was slightly windy as well. I’m used to the heat but it helps when you play in weather like this.
You can expect some funky colours but I’m still debating on what to wear.
Danny Willett (Eng) – First Round 65 (-6)
Thoughts on your round?
It was a very mixed bag. I hit it very nicely on the front nine but made nothing. It was one of those days where you put two very different nines together and got a good score.
You are in good form, did you expect this score?
No, it was a very long flight here and my body only started feeling good yesterday. I was coming down with a bit of cold and flu. One thing I tried to do was to keep expectations as low as possible. It is always easy to come here and go ‘Hey, I just won’ and keep expectations high. I’ve done that before and it kind of kills you. I came here, doing the same things, working hard and trying to hit the same shots.
Danny Willett of England Danny Willett of England
Is there a transition from desert golf to coming here?
Yeah, it is massively different. Different grasses, different temperatures. Everything is different. There is nothing that can prepare you when you come to Malaysia. It is stifling hot and sweaty.
It is a great week to come here and play golf. You can’t stand on the range and keep hitting balls. You need to put in some good work before coming here. Warm up nicely before the round. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. Luckily for me it worked today and I came back with a nice 65.
Miguel Tabuena (Phi) – First round 66 (-5)
I’m really happy with my round today. I wasn’t 100% and I’ll take anything under par. I think I ate something wrong on Tuesday and when I got back to the hotel, I felt really sick. I went to the clinic in the hotel and they said it was food poisoning. I was in bed the whole of Wednesday and the good was that I had a late tee time today for some extra rest. I was really really sick both ways on Wednesday and Tuesday.
I thought of withdrawing as you don’t want to miss a prestigious event like this. It’s one of the biggest events we have and I’m glad I shot five under today. I was really weak this morning. I just told myself to keep it on the fairway and attack when I could and not force anything. Sometimes you really play well like that. I’m glad I didn’t force anything. I hit more fairways than usual which helps on this golf course.
I was like 65%. I clubbed up one in almost every shot. I felt week. It was a bit overcast and we got a bit of rain which helped. I did feel faint out there. Had to go to the bathroom four times and my playing partners (David Howell and Natipong Srithong) were really helpful and told me to take my time as they hit ahead.
I’ll be glad to shoot anything under par tomorrow. Hopefully I can still be in position on Saturday and Sunday. I would like to get into position to win the tournament.
Prom Meesawat (Tha) – First Round 66 (-5)
I didn’t expect to shoot five-under because I didn’t hit it as good as I should during the practice round. I started with birdie, birdie and tried to find the fairway. You must hit a lot of greens here and find fairways to have a good score.
I’m not in very good form at the moment but I hit the driver so well today and that’s the key to a good score on this course. After I made two birdies, I put myself in a very comfortable position. From there I kept playing well and I felt relaxed.
It is very nice weather. It doesn’t happen a lot when you play in Malaysia. It is nice to play in this weather (breezy & cloudy).
(On his form) I still have a lot of work to do so I’ll continue to work hard and prepare for the rest of the season.
Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand
Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) – First Round 66 (-5)
I didn’t have good drives but my putting helped me. I had two long putts (25 yards on 9 and 17 yards on 17). I was bogey free and I felt very confident on the greens. I holed a lot of putts but struggled on the tees.
I have no complaints with my round. I’m very happy with my score. If you hit on the green, you will have a good chance to score. I like the green speeds, it suits me.
I like the course a lot. It is not a long course but it is very important to find the fairways. I didn’t find many fairways but I managed to recover nicely and return with a good score.
Gaganjeet Bhullar (Ind) – First round 67 (-4)
What do you make of this four-under start?
To be honest, I played really well today. Could have saved three shots out there. But four under is a decent opening round. Gave myself a lot of birdie opportunities and I think after a long time, I think I hit 16 greens in regulation. I’ve been striking the ball really well and I’m feeling quite positive about this week.
Did you find something?
The last one year was pretty much a healing period of my injury. I started feeling healthy again as I worked on my fitness in the off season. It’s good to be in the red numbers and always good to talk to the media.
What was happened with the injury?
It was a ligament tear, grade two back in October 2014. I had to sit out for three to four months as my hand, left wrist, was in a cast. I started playing in the beginning of 2015 but it took me a while to get adjusted to the short game as that’s the area where you need your wrist the most. It took me a while to gain my confidence back. I’m feeling quite positive with my short game now and it’s really good to be back in the tournament scene. I need a few more rounds in the red numbers and get my confidence back. Working really hard on my game right now.
Is this the kind of course you like playing?
Yes, we do get to play these kind of courses on the Asian Tour quite a lot. It reminds me of the golf course which we played last week in Bangladesh. It’s a great set up. The greens are absolutely pure and the ball is spinning when you hit a good shot. It suits my eye. Just go back to basics, pre-shot routine. That’s what I’m going to focus on.