Round One: What they Said #HIO2018

Thu 08 Mar 2018

Round One: What they Said #HIO2018

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Emiliano Grillo (Arg) First Round 65 (-7)

I almost had to play perfect golf out there. It’s a very difficult golf course. I’m very happy with the way I handled myself out there. It was very tough and I was able to make some good putts and hit the fairways when I needed to.

I had, I think, 26 putts and that helps anyone’s round out there. Hopefully I can keep rolling them in. I’ve just got to keep the ball in play, that’s what matters around here.

The par save on 15th was a rollercoaster. Then, on 16th, I got a little bit unlucky and hit the rocks on the bunker and it went pretty far on a bad lie. But I was able to make the putt coming back in there. It was very important to close with a birdie because I was playing very well going into the last hole. Just got to keep going.

You have no idea how difficult the course is. I shot seven-under-par, but I think anywhere else it would have been close to a 59. It was definitely a magnificent round of golf. Every tee shot, every second shot, you don’t want to miss it in the wrong place.

Paul Peterson (Usa) First Round 67 (-5)

I’m really happy with today’s round. Four-under-par was my goal today, so to one up that was nice. It felt like it was nice to get out in the morning. There was not much wind out there, and I felt like the pin locations were pretty accessible today. I have a feeling that they are not going to be as nice over the next three days. It was good to get out in front of that.

I made a bad swing there on the sixth hole. Then, to bounce back with three birdies to finish the day was big. It’s funny how sometimes a bogey can kind of catapult you to make a few coming in, so I was happy I was able to bounce back from that.

I’m still hitting a lot of greens, really happy with consistency from tee to green and I was able to roll in a couple of putts, so it was great.

It’s unbelievable (the course). Some of the tee boxes changed from last year as I remember. It just seems like even off the fairway it’s getting a little bit more brutal with some of the fescue grass that they have got. So, you just have to be in control of your golf ball and be really, really patient. I think that will be a good recipe.

It’s just good to start off with some momentum. To be able to carry that going into the next few days, I’m really happy to be in the spot that I’m at. I’m feeling confident with my game.

Pablo Larrazabal (Esp) First Round 67 (-5)

My lovely new iPhone went back to Spanish time overnight and I woke up at the hotel 38 minutes before my tee-time.

Thanks to Dorothée, the secretary of the European Tour, who called me in my room and said 'Pablo, you're playing in 38 minutes, you must wake up and go to the tenth tee'.

I woke up, had a ten-second shower and I ran and had a courtesy car waiting for me. I arrived at the course 25 minutes before my tee-time. My heart was pumping big time, I was very nervous. I think the courtesy car made a world record from the hotel to the golf course in a couple of minutes, a ride that can take ten or 15 minutes, it was really wild.

I started with a birdie on 11 and then I four-putted 15, then birdied 16, 17 and 18 to shoot two-under-par on the back nine - that is very, very good. Then a three-putt on the first but I kept playing well and birdied four to eight, and then another three-putt on the ninth. One four-putt, two three-putts, nine birdies on this monster is quite unbelievable.

Ajeetesh Sandhu (Ind) First Round 68 (-4)

I could say today’s round was almost a dream round. My hitting was just amazing. I hit all fairways and made regulation on 17 out of 18 greens. We were a little lucky that the wind wasn’t up today otherwise this course can pose many more challenges.

I just missed a few putts out there but that wasn’t due to bad putting. There were a few lip-outs.

It’s just 18 holes done and a lot of golf is still to be played. So I’ll have to keep my thoughts in check since this golf course can come back and bite you at any moment. It’s a course that you can’t overpower. So the effort will be to continue in the same manner over the next three days by trying to find maximum fairways and greens.

I was very comfortable playing with Jeev as I’ve played a lot of golf with him in Chandigarh. I must admit that there was a little pressure at the start as this is my National Open, but Jeev’s presence in the same group helped calm me down.

Gavin Green (Mas) First Round 69 (-3) 

It was a pretty slow start for me. I’ve hit good tee shots, but I just didn’t good second shots. I got into the groove later in the round, after the birdied the sixth hole and eagled the eighth hole. That got me into a momentum a bit.

I hit good shots with my long iron. Throughout the round, I just kept the ball in play and didn’t do anything crazy. I’m just aiming to hit fairways and greens, and make putts. I made a 20-foot birdie at the 14th hole, which was satisfying.

At the 18th, I hit a good three wood, and then a good five wood; I just went for it. I’m happy with my round considering my jet lag. I flew in on Tuesday. I’ll just adopt the same approach tomorrow, hopefully with a more solid start.

Nicholas Fung (Mas) First Round 69 (-3)

We started early and I think that's an advantage. I teed off at 7.30am, and there were no winds at all. I was just aiming to keep the ball in play all the time. It doesn't matter if the approach shot is long. It is most important to keep your ball on in play here at this golf course.

I've hit it well and I'm happy with three-under-par. The holes from 14th to 18th are the most difficult and most important in many golfers’ opinion. I three putted and bogeyed the 14th, birdied the 15th, bogeyed the 16th and birdied the 18th. Overall, I played even-par for those five holes, which I think is good. The most important thing to do is to score on the front nine. Bogey is not a bad score, just don’t go beyond that.

Panuphol Pittayarat (Tha) First Round 69 (-3) 

To score a three-under-par 69 here is very satisfying for me. And, to be bogey free anywhere is nice, especially here on this challenging golf course. I struck the ball well today. I also had two great up-and-downs on holes 14 and 16.

After winning the Indonesian Open last year, I’ve been playing golf with plenty of confidence. Right now, I’m just enjoying my game and looking to improve every aspect my game. Nothing has changed. I have the same routine, same practice and I’m still grinding every day.

I’ll be adopting the same approach tomorrow. I’ll just keep the ball in play and I’m not going to try anything too funky. It’s a “place” golf course. You have to place the ball in the right positions on the fairways and greens.

Prayad Marksaeng (Tha) First Round 70 (-2)

I’m glad that I’m in the first group today. As there are no groups in front, I don’t have to wait constantly on the golf course. I can just play my game without interruptions.

I’m also happy about every aspect of my game. I drove accurately today, hit my iron shots cleanly and putted well. The morning was quite calm and it wasn’t windy, so that may have helped in my good scoring. The pin positions remain challenging. At the 16th, I left it far from the pin and ended with a bogey. But overall, I’m very happy with my opening round.