Wang on dual mission in Austin

Tue 21 Mar 2017

Wang on dual mission in Austin

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March 21: Korea’s Jeunghun Wang will be on a double mission when he makes his debut at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play starting on Wednesday.
The Asian Tour star, who finished third on the Order of Merit last season, hopes to seal his spot for a first Masters Tournament appearance next month by staying in the top-50 on the Official World Golf Ranking after this week’s tournament. He is currently 45th in the world.
Another goal on the horizon is for him to qualify for his first Presidents Cup appearance for the International Team which takes on the United States in in New Jersey in September.
Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand
The 21-year-old, winner of the Qatar Masters on the European Tour earlier this season, is currently 11th on the team rankings, with the top-10 automatically earning their team spot as of September 4.
Lining up alongside fellow Asian Tour stars Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand and countrymen Byeonghun An and K.T. Kim in the elite 64-man tournament at Austin Country Club in Texas, Wang has been drawn in Group 10 for the preliminary round with Tyrrell Hatton, Rafa Cabrera Bello and Charles Howell III.
After three round-robin matches, the winner of the 16 groups will qualify for the knock-out stage at the weekend, which Wang hopes to pull the rug from under the players ranked higher than he is.
Wang said: “Of course the goal is to win but I know it’s hard. So I just want to enjoy myself this week and if I can play good, that’s great but if I don’t, it’s okay.
“The key to match play is confidence … you’ll need to show confidence to have more chance to win a hole. This week is a great opportunity for me to improve my ranking higher and I certainly hope to qualify for the Masters and also play in the Presidents Cup.”
The ultra-talented Korean has skyrocketed up the world rankings thanks largely to back-to-back wins in Morocco and Mauritius last season, before adding a third career victory in Qatar to jump into the world’s top-50.
He was picked by India’s Jeev Milkha Singh to represent Team Asia in the EurAsia Cup early last year and earned a half point in the singles against Ross Fisher. Singh described Wang as one fo the best ball strikers he has seen in recent times.
The key to match play is confidence … you’ll need to show confidence to have more chance to win a hole. This week is a great opportunity for me to improve my ranking higher and I certainly hope to qualify for the Masters and also play in the Presidents Cup. - Jeunghun Wang

Wang said the experience was an eye-opener. “The EurAsia Cup made me so much better and I actually love match play,” said Wang, who finished tied 23rd at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Bay Hill last weekend.
“My short game around the greens has improved and now I feel like it is one of my strengths. But I do have to get my putting better.”
Thongchai, who qualified for the quarter-finals in 2010, was drawn into the same group as Alex Noren, Francesco Molinari and Bernd Wiesberger.
Currently ranked 63rd in the world, the former Thai paratrooper, who has not played a tournament since the Maybank Championship in February, is hoping to be fully recharged to put up a strong account of himself.
Wang’s compatriot has reigning Masters Tournament champion Danny Willett for company in the group stage along with Russell Knox and Bill Haas.