Ryan wants Moore in CIMB defence

Wed 15 Oct 2014

Ryan wants Moore in CIMB defence

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Kuala Lumpur, October 15: American Ryan Moore hopes to become the first man to successfully defend the CIMB Classic later this month, saying the US$7 million showpiece has a special place in his heart.
The 32-year-old was triumphant after a Monday morning play-off at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club a year ago and is relishing the opportunity to take on another caliber field from October 30 to November 2.
“I'm excited to come back there as a defending champion. I think it's something special at any event. This is my third PGA TOUR victory and I've been out here for 10 years, so it doesn't happen all the time. It's definitely always a special week,” said Moore in a teleconference with the media today.
“Obviously I won it last year, so it has a great place in my heart as a tournament that means something to me.  I love the trip, and I've loved going there every single year. I missed it one year only because my son was born literally the same weekend of the tournament, so I couldn't play that year, but I've played it every other year, and I love going there.”
Another top-class field which includes Ryder Cup stars Lee Westwood and Sergio Garcia and FedExCup number one Billy Horschel will tee up at the CIMB Classic which is co-sanctioned with the Asian Tour. The leading 10 players from the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit as of Monday will qualify for the CIMB Classic, which was inaugurated in 2010.
Moore defeated countryman Gary Woodland in a play-off last year and subsequently posted seven top-10s on the PGA Tour in the recently concluded seasons. With the chance to recharge his batteries recently, he is ready to rumble again at the CIMB Classic, which is the only PGA TOUR-sanctioned tournament in Southeast Asia.
“I feel great about my game. I've actually had a few weeks off.  I've had some great rest after the end of the FedExCup going into these next few weeks, and I've had some great practice in, and I feel really ready to go.  I'm starting this week at the Shriners Hospital tournament which is in Las Vegas, which is where I live, at home for me.  I'm playing this week, and then I'll be ready to come to Malaysia,” said Moore.
“For me it's about winning.  You know, I'm trying to play good, solid, consistent golf at all times, but for me I play golf to be competitive.  I mean, that's what I love about it. I love competing at the highest level. Every single week it's just trying to be in contention and have a chance, have a chance to win going into Sunday. That's what I play golf for.”
Moore is predicting another strong challenge from the Asian Tour contingent where Thai star Kiradech Aphibarnrat finished joint third, one behind the play-off duo, last year.
“Obviously they're great golfers. I've been fortunate enough to play with Kiradech a few times, and he's great. I mean, he's absolutely a PGA TOUR caliber golfer, which means there's a lot more guys like him playing down there and being competitive, and it's great to see those guys getting out and being in the events and having success,” said Moore.
“It just speaks about golf in general.  I mean, it's growing, and everybody is just getting better and better everywhere. It's great to see. That's what we want. This is the industry we're in, and I love to see the game of golf just keep growing and more people get exposed to it and enjoy the game that I love and get to do it for a living.”
He is looking forward to visiting Kuala Lumpur again. “You know, I've enjoyed the hospitality which is amazing.  Kuala Lumpur is a great city.  I always have fun there. It's nice staying downtown and seeing different things, experiencing great food and great people. I've really enjoyed the golf course last year, and really just every aspect of it.  It's just different,” he said.
Past champions of the event are Ben Crane (USA), Bo Van Pelt (USA) and Nick Watney (USA).
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