Round four: What they said #HIO2018

Sun 11 Mar 2018

Round four: What they said #HIO2018

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Matt Wallace (Eng) Fourth Round 68 (-4), Total 277 (-11)

I feel amazing. It was a hard week and a hard golf course. You can’t be off your game. The people who played well are going to be on top. I think, I played great and didn’t miss too many shots. It was satisfying to master this course. Dave (his caddy) was saying that it was set up sometimes like the U.S. Open. You can hit great shots, but it can run into the rough or slope. So, it’s particularly satisfying to win here.

I had never thought of playing it safe during the playoff, even during regulation play when I was farther out. I was swinging it that good. I feel that my long iron play this week was the best part of my game, so as soon as I was all the way down on the end of the fairway, I was going to hit an iron and go for the green.

I was most nervous on the 16th tee. For the second shot, I hit it into the bunker on the downslope. Then, I hit an unbelievable shot out of there and holed the putt. Stephen Gallacher put his arm around me and said, ‘keep going, kid’. That helped me a lot as he’s a veteran. To make a bogey like that was key for my round. I went to the tee box on 17th and got back into the game.

As soon as we finished yesterday and Shubhankar made birdie on 18th  to grab the lead with me, I told Dave, ‘we’re not going to be favourites tomorrow.’ But as soon as I woke up in the morning, I was like, ‘this is going to be like round one and I will shoot my best.’ I planned to play the aggressively and score. That front nine today was special to me this week.

I was in the zone midway through round three. You have to be calm here. If you double bogey, you can’t be too disheartened, and similarly you can be too excited if you shoot an eagle.

This is one of the hardest golf course that I’ve played. I’ll learn from it and I’m looking forward to playing in similar conditions next time.

If Shubhankar had played well and had the local support, it would have been really tough for me. For him to achieve all the things he has done, he has been phenomenal. I’ve done something similar, but on a lower level as I’ve won many times on the Alps Tour in a short time. We had a chat on the golf course and I think he’s going to do really well, especially when he has the local support.

This week has taught me a lot. Hopefully, it can be the start of a few things coming up.

Andrew Johnston (Eng) Fourth Round 66 (-6), Total 277 (-11)

I feel good as I played very well today, as I did on Friday. I was happy to be able to put up a good score today and force a playoff. I’m slightly frustrated, as I attempted a similar putt on the 18th during regulation play. I didn’t think it broke that much and I hit a good putt, but it didn’t go in. It’s alright. I had a very good week.

I was trying to stay patient and I wanted to start well. Yesterday, I made a mistake on eighth, and made a birdie on ninth. Today, I made birdies on both holes, which was good. I played solid on the back nine, so I played lovely all day.

Anything could have happened out there. I just tried to play my own game and I knew that I was just a couple of shots behind. When I birdied 17th and I got to the green on 18th, I realised we were tied.

I didn’t like the yardage at the 18th. It felt like it was just setting me down the left towards the traps a lot of the time. I said, this is a percentage golf course and stick to it. I’ve been hitting the wedges well, putting well and sticking to my game plan and that was what I worked for.

I’m very happy with the way I played this year. Last year was tough. This year’s start has been good so I just got to keep pushing on and keep working hard.

Sihwan Kim (Usa) Fourth Round 68 (-4), Total 280 (-8)

It was a difficult course and I didn’t expect the leaders to shoot so low. I had a number in mind this morning, and I achieved what I thought. The number was four-under-par, obviously. I thought I had a pretty good chance to win, but with scores that low, that wasn’t the case.

Today I was good off the tee. I made some great putts and great up-and-downs. Indeed, I got the momentum going.

Even though I was within two shots of the lead after I birdied the ninth, I approached the back nine pretty much the same as I did the whole tournament, which was to stay aggressive.

At the 18th, I wasn’t the most comfortable on the tee box. I pulled it left into the hazard, then I just made the best out of the situation.

This result will get my confidence up, especially when playing on difficult golf courses. If I continue to play like this, then I’ll be fine.

The conditions have been great and the people have been nice. It’s nice to have co-sanctions like this event, which means more opportunities for Asian Tour players to play on the European Tour.

Pablo Larrazabal (Esp) Fourth Round 69 (-3), Total 281 (-7) 

I played three-over-par the last three holes yesterday and another three-over-par the last five holes today. So it hurts. If we keep working like this we’re going to win, not just one event, we’re going to win many. 

You know how I am. I like to look at the leaderboard on the first tee and see how many behind I am or how many in front I am and go and attack the golf course. It’s tough to attack this golf course but I had to do it. I came here from Barcelona for one week to win a golf tournament. I didn’t do it, so I’m a little disappointed. I play to win. I only have four trophies back home and I want to retire with many more. 

Finishing fourth or whatever is good, it’s a step forward but I came to win and I have a little bit of disappointment now.

Finishing fourth is better than finishing seventh but I feel like I gave away half of the tournament yesterday afternoon and I gave the other half in the last four holes today. If I put eleven-under-par on the leaderboard and have two or three to play, then it will be very difficult for them to play the last three. But this is golf. This is the best game in the world and to finish fourth in the Hero Indian Open is great. 

Shubhankar Sharma (Ind) Fourth Round 75 (+3), Total 284 (-4)

I am disappointed obviously. The good thing today, was that I made a birdie at the last hole. It was a mixed bag. These things happen and it is not an easy course. Even though I started well, I made a few bad swings and in the end it’s alright. I really enjoyed the tournament and I loved the support. I’d like to thank everyone for coming out to support me.

I was just trying to keep up with Matt. He was playing so well. I made a bad swing on the fifth hole, which put me out of contention. I was trying to come back, but I made another bad swing on the seventh. You can’t really drop too many shots on this course and I dropped nine today.

I was five-over-par going into the last hole, but, it’s alright as it’s all part of the game. I’m happy about the way I’ve been playing and that I’m able to get myself into contention every week.

I’m looking forward to playing the 2018 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play tournament. It’ll be a good break from stroke play. The last time I won a matchplay event was the All-Indian Amateur, which was six years ago.

I put in a lot of hard work, and I’m happy with the way things have been. Disappointments are part of the game. It’ll just make me stronger. The next time I’m in this situation, I’ll do better.

Gavin Green (Mas) Fourth Round 71 (-1), Total 288 (even-par)

I made some good putts. Although, a few bad tee shots had cost me during the round. It was an average week and I wished I had played better. I love India and I will want to come back next year.

Towards the end of the round, the putts started to drop and I thought to myself, ‘OK, this isn’t too bad.’ This course is tough, so to walk away with even par is pretty decent.

I’ve made changes to my game and it’s working out so far. Compared to last week, this week a lot better for me. I struck the ball a lot better, my short game got a little strong. I just have to work on my drives, hopefully before my next event.

I’ll be taking a nice break, then probably head over to Morocco and Spain. But for now, I’m going to chill out, have fun and enjoy my break.