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THE PRESIDENTS CUP MEDIA CONFERENCE
November 6, 2019
CHRIS REIMER: Welcome to the media joining the call today. We are excited to kickoff our 2019 Presidents Cup International Team captain's picks with our captain, Ernie Els. Before we get to Ernie Els, I'll go ahead and introduce our Executive Director of the Presidents Cup, Matt Kamienski, to kick off our conference call.
MATT KAMIENSKI: Thank you, Chris and thank you everyone for joining the call, especially Ernie. It's hard to believe it's only 3 it days until we welcome 24 of the best players in the world to come down and play in The Presidents Cup. It's been a long time coming since we announced it back in 2015, so I can tell you now that Royal Melbourne is primed and ready to go. It's going to be in the best shape it's ever been, and the support that we have already received from the fans and community and the corporate community here in Melbourne has just been tremendous.
I'd like to say a special thanks to Visit Victoria, who is our host as well as our global partner, Citi and Rolex, we couldn't do it without them.
We are very confident this is going to be the best Presidents Cup we've ever had. You look at Ernie and our captain on the U.S. side it's going to be an amazing event.
I'd like to thank the media, the Australian of the media who have supported the event from day one and who will support through the week of the event. We look forward to we will copping all the U.S. and international media who will be coming to Australia to cover the event.
Before I turn it over to Chris and Ernie to make his picks, I'd like to make the announcement that we did get word from Ernie this week that he has chosen to start with fourball in the matches, so on Thursday, we will tee off with fourball starting at approximately 9:30 in the morning.
So with that, I'll turn it over to Chris and good luck, Ernie. Thank you so much for everything you've done and look forward to having you here 30 days from now.
CHRIS REIMER: Thank you, Matt.
And Captain Els, if you would, let's go ahead and make your first pick for your captain's picks.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Okay. Thank you, gentlemen, everybody listening in. I'm speaking from Beijing. There's quite a bit of a time change and hopefully this call doesn't get dropped.
But my first choice is a young man from Korea. He's 21 years old. He's 24th in the World Ranking now. He's our Rookie of the Year on the PGA TOUR. He's had one hell of a year, lots of Top-10s. Played his way on the team with his consistency and coming to the meetings and showing a lot of spirit with the other players, but Sungjae Im is my first pick from South Korea. Congratulations, Sungjae.
SUNGJAE IM: Thank you so much, Ernie.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: It was a wonderful season, my friend. Seven Top-10s, and the only rookie to qualify for the 2019 TOUR Championship, that is a hell of a feat. Finishing 19th on the FedExCup points list last season, you were really -- I was already looking at you, but I didn't want to get you too excited when I saw you through the season. Kind of left you alone, but you were always a lock in our picks, so congratulations, my friend.
CHRIS REIMER: Sungjae Im of South Korea is the first pick.
Ernie, go ahead and give us your second selection.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: My second selection is an even younger man. It's his birthday. He's in Florida at the moment. He's a young man from Chile, he's 20 years of age, or in another day, Joaquï¿½n Niemann, what a great kid. I want to call you kid, you're my daughter's age, but you played like a grown man this past season. Winning your first event on the PGA TOUR as a Chilean player at the Greenbrier, that solidified you in my view.
Obviously in 2018, you came out as a young guy, and had so many Top-10 finishes and didn't even have to go to the Korn Ferry Tour to get your card, and you automatically got on to the TOUR.
So I knew you were a special player then, and you definitely solidified it since the summer this year. Congratulations, my friends, on making our team. We are really going to lean on you. So can't wait to see you down in Australia, my friend.
JOAQUï¿½N NIEMANN: Thank you, Ernie.
CHRIS REIMER: Your third pick, Captain.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: My third pick is a young man from Canada, Adam Hadwin, who is 32 years old now. Adam was such a great member of our team the last time under Captain Price's leadership in New York. You know, I loved the way he interacted with the team. He's got an all-around great game, especially for our team formats in the first four sessions, and he's had a very consistent year. You know, five Top-10s, he finished second in the Desert Classic, sixth in his home country, his home open, Canadian Open, and lately he's been playing well, fourth at Safeway and Shriners. Really excited to announce Adam Hadwin as our next captain's pick.
Welcome to the team, Adam. Really excited to have you.
CHRIS REIMER: Fantastic. And then final and fourth pick for you, Captain Els.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Well, this one should be a huge surprise to everybody around the world. This is going to be shocking news. I thought I'd leave it for the fourth pick. He's from Australia, former world No. 1, major champion, Jason Day.
He's won 12 times on the PGA TOUR. He's played in four Presidents Cups. He's going to come down to Australia as a hometown hero. You know, he won twice in 2018. Five Top-10s this season, including a fifth at the farmers and a fourth at Pebble Beach, and eighth place at THE PLAYERS Championship, fifth at the Masters.
So you know, very solid year. And he brings a lot to the team. He brings leadership to the team. He brings a lot of experience to the team, and obviously he's bringing some home flavor.
Very excited to announce Jason Day as rounding out our four picks.
CHRIS REIMER: That's great. Congratulations, Ernie. Four great picks.
Q. If you look at stats, looked like putting is a strength of a lot of guys you selected. Was that intentional and how did you go about the process of seeing that that was a strength you needed to add to your team?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Let me just put it one way. This was very difficult for me. The four guys earned their place on to the team but there were numerous guys that I had to call, and I actually called them before I called the elected, selected guys.
I called Branden Grace. I called Byeonghun An. I called Corey Conners and some of the other guys, Erik Van Rooyen, guys who were really, really close. It was really, really difficult to make those calls to tell the other guys they were not on the team.
I didn't go all-out the statistical way, but yes, I had to look at guys' long-term form. Guys who have played well for a while, and yes, looking at all the stats, I wanted good driving, good ball-striking obviously, but putting is very important. In my experience of these Cups, it comes down to pressure putting in a lot of instances.
Yes, putting is a pivotal attribute that you need, especially in what we play. Yes, putting was very important for me.
Q. Can you expand upon the decision to add the four guys you did versus potential picks like Byeonghun An or Corey Connors and what attributes led you to the picks that you made?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: As I said, it was very, very close. At the end of the day, you know, it was captain's picks. I didn't want to stray too far from my core belief, and that's why these calls were so very difficult to make for me.
All these guys, we had a group of close to 20 guys come to our team meetings whenever we had them. They are guys that bought into this system of mine right from the go, and it was all about who I was going to pick. A lot of the guys that didn't make it are very, very good friends of mine, so it was very, very difficult for me to do.
But I felt that how the tournament has been played with all the team play that's going to take place, I needed guys in solid form in all the categories, whether it's chipping, putting, driving, iron play, all of those qualities were very important for me.
So that's why I went with these four guys who are very consistent and very strong under pressure.
Q. Do you expect the captain on the U.S. side to pick himself as one of his selections, and if Tiger does play, how, if at all, will that change the dynamics of the event?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Yeah, do I think he's going to pick himself. I don't think he's got any choice. He's in good form, he's Masters Champion, he's won recently and he's played in so many matches.
Yeah, I think, yes, there's a very, very big chance he will choose himself. Under the format, the rules, he only has to play once before Sunday, not that he'd like to play only once. But he could do that, and he's got a very strong team around him and obviously a good captain.
You know, I think it would be good for the event.
And what was the other bit of your question?
Q. How, if at all, does it change the dynamic, and does it make it any different for you as the opposing captain trying to work around his potential presence?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: I think it brings a lot to the event. I mean, obviously this is our generation's best player by quite a distance, and you know, people want to see him play wherever he goes. Not that he's going to get all the support in Australia. You know, he's going to be playing against the International Team.
But if he wants to get booed, go and play. But no, in all seriousness, it brings so much to the event. You know, a couple years ago when I was the same age as him, I was also going through a golden period and I might have thought about picking myself, but I'm no Tiger Woods on the golf course. There's nobody that strong.
But he's bringing a lot to the tournament and it will be great to see him play. As I say, we've got enough assistant captains with a lot of experience where, you know, they can get around those obstacles pretty easy I think.
Q. I don't know if you're aware, but this is the youngest Presidents Cup team ever and you have six rookies which is the sixth-most-ever in the International Team. Did you try to find a balance and have six of each, or are putting the investment in youth specifically? You picked two very young players.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: You know, it's just the way it worked out to be honest. I didn't go looking for -- Joaquï¿½n is 20 and Sungjae is 21 and even Haotong Li is 22 or 23, and some of the other guys. But just these guys' form, they made themselves a lock on this team, the way they played.
Whether it is in the day and age that we are living in, you know, I definitely wasn't that good when I was 20, 21 years old, I can promise you that, but these kids, these guys are world-class players and they have proven themselves.
Obviously threw age out of the equation, and as it will be they have one hell of a big future in this event. I can't go -- I mean, you've got the record, but I'm not sure which guys before Joaquï¿½n and Sungjae were the youngest players to be selected. Probably Jordan Spieth on the American side.
But you know, from our perspective, I'm really excited by the new blood that's come in, and I'm really excited that we have experience, also, with the new blood, and as you say, I think it balances the team really well, and it all happened by accident to be honest with you.
Q. I wanted to ask you about specific parts of Sungjae's game that you liked. You talked about putting and ball-striking for other players, but what is it about his game that you like that got him on the team? And also, with so many rookies out there, I guess you likely won't have any choice other than to throw these guys right into the fire from the first day rather than kind of shield them, right? Are you just going to put them right into the fire and have them go up against some of the veterans on the American Team?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Thank you very much, yes, actually I saw Sungjae play last year on the Korn Ferry Tour, and obviously he was the leading money winner, or leading in the first event or last event and that kind of got my attention a little bit, where did this kid from Korea come from.
I wanted to play Sungjae and I got the opportunity to play with Sungjae at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am at the beginning of our season in February, and we played three days together. I just loved the way he approached the game. You know, very cool, calm, collected. Conditions didn't suit him. It was very, very soft but he never complained, and he kept playing and kept learning, and I like that.
Then I found his schedule, he played almost every week, and that's how much he loves the game, and that's another attribute for him. He's really finding the answers every week, and I've seen him come through. He's worked on his putting, and the putting's come through big time. A win is just a matter of time, and it will come.
Yes, I told the guys our team meetings -- not afraid to choose rookies on the team and I'm not afraid to play them. These guys have earned their place on the team, and you have the fourball format -- I don't think I'm throwing them in the fire at all -- and competing, and that's what we want to do. Whether they get picked or not in the first session, we'll see. But I'm not afraid to play anybody.
Q. When you were talking about Sungjae Im, you mentioned about the spirit he showed at some of the meetings. Along with form, what exactly stood out to you about some of the guys you picked in terms of their attitude and other things away from the course, at meetings and such things?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Yeah, I think attitude is big obviously, but I mean, that's not everything in my book. There's a lot of individualistic characteristics like on any team, and you go accordingly.
But all of our guys have great character and they are showing a lot of willingness to learn, listen to me, and so forth, and you know, Sungjae is no different. He's a quiet guy. Him and Joaquï¿½n are quiet young guys, they are listening, and then they go out and show me.
I told them, you don't have to show me. Do it for yourself, a testament of your own game, when you go out and play on the PGA TOUR or wherever you play. We'll be watching. That's what we have done and that's what they have done and here we are. They are on the team and they are going to be great for our team.
Q. I was wondering if you could get into details about what Adam Hadwin brings to your team.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Yeah, thank you, as I said, I just love his game. I played with him numerous times. You know, just want to say between him and Corey Conners, it's also a very, very tight race. It's one of the difficult calls I had to make was to Corey. He was very gracious and he offered us good luck going to the matches.
Adam, I just love his game. He's very solid all around. There's not any weakness there. He drives it very consistently well. He's a good iron player, good thinker and is a very good putter on the green. And he's been there. He was there once before, and I watched him. Obviously we got heavily defeated at Liberty, but saw him and he didn't flinch. He kept hitting his hand up to play, and I really liked that.
Very excited for Adam to be on the team.
Q. How much was Mike Weir advocating for his fellow Canadians?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: No, Mike and my fellow captains, they have never really influenced me at all. You know, we've spoke about it, but it wasn't like anybody was lobbying for a certain player, you know. He definitely wasn't lobbying for a Canadian, and same with K.J. Choi. K.J. didn't lobby for a Korean player to be picked, either, or Geoff an Australian and so forth and Trevor.
We basically took this thing from a broad view, and narrowed it down to who is playing the best golf; statistically who is playing the best, and who has great character.
Not saying that the other guys don't that didn't make, it don't get me wrong, but these guys tick all the boxes and that's why we chose these four guys.
Q. Will you be encouraging your other international players to reach out to those guys between now and when they get down here to talk about what Royal Melbourne is like? Obviously you've got great knowledge of it, as well, but it is something different from what they might have experienced before. Will you encourage them to ask the Aussies any questions between now and then before they get down here?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Definitely between now and then, we're going to have a lot of chat ing going on. You know, we are open for business now, so to speak. You know, Geoff and the other Aussies on this team, they are going to play a big part now. I'm playing the golf course -- down in Australia. The weather conditions you might get down in Melbourne, yeah, these things will be talked about.
Some of the players want to get there a lot earlier and get themselves familiar with the golf course, so we encourage that, also. And then obviously, a lot of the guys are going to come down and play Oz Open, which I have really been asking for. You know, because I mean, when you play Sydney or Melbourne, there's always that breeze, that Australian summer breeze, and you've got to get used to that, and even the topography is a little different down there, almost seaside courses and the different grasses we've got down there.
And yeah, the Aussies will play a huge part in getting these guys prepared, and I'm very fortunate that four Aussies are playing, and then obviously Geoff Ogilvy as an assistant captain.
Q. If I can circle back to Tiger real quick, if he does pick himself, what are the challenges of trying to play and be a captain? You've kind of seen it on both sides.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Well, I think the last captain that played was Hale Irwin, if I'm not mistaken, in '94. I didn't play that year. The tournament was pretty young then. It wasn't as big as it is now.
But I think, it's just great for the game. Great for the event to have Tiger play. He's Masters champ, as I say, and he just won. He's an icon of the game. It will be different. But Tiger is a bit different, isn't he. He's done things that other people hasn't really done on the golf course.
It will be a nice plus to have. It will really make the tournament unique than Ryder Cup play or Solheim play. We'll have to see. They will have to deal with it. We don't have the luxury of the international captain playing, so they are stuck with me as a cheerleader all week, and it will be interesting how the team copes with Tiger playing.
Q. I have a question for Ernie and a question for Joaquï¿½n. For Ernie, about the pick, besides his qualities and his abilities to be on the team, is the fact that Abraham Ancer was already on the team a factor for picking Joaquï¿½n?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: No, no. It's great to have a couple of Spanish-speaking guys on the team, but definitely no, we didn't choose Joaquï¿½n because of Abraham Ancer. It's because of Joaquï¿½n's performance on the golf course and the type of person Joaquï¿½n is, and it's just by chance that these things fall in place to be honest with you.
We are a very diverse team. Obviously we have a lot of nations on our team, and it's exciting. It's exciting to see how golf has grown. Who would have ever thought, even just two Presidents Cups, three Presidents Cups ago, that a player from Mï¿½xico will be on the team and a player from Chile.
It's just amazing how these guys have grown and how they have improved, obviously, and we find ourselves with this great result to have these type of players on our team.
Who knows, I might pair them together. I think they might enjoy it; they can speak Spanish together, but let's see what happens. It's all by chance.
Q. For Sungjae, Joaquï¿½n and Adam, do you have any players on the team that you hope to be partnered with?
ADAM HADWIN: I had not experienced playing with Hideki two years ago and Adam Scott, and both terrific, terrific competitors. We have got some great young players on this year's squad. I'm, like Ernie kind of mentioned, I'm ready to play. I'm ready to play with anybody in any situation, and I feel like I can make -- I feel like my game suits any situation, as well, and so I'm excited to get down there and be ready to play with whoever the captains and the assistants want to put me with.
Q. Joaquï¿½n, and perhaps Sungjae, you've helped this side become the youngest age across the board, average age. As young rookies, what can you bring to this team that can spark something that hasn't been there with all of the losses to the Internationals; I'm assuming some enthusiasm and exuberance.
SUNGJAE IM: Yeah, I think with so many young players on the team this year, I think there will be a lot of passion and energy and I think that positive energy can help the team positively with everything moving forward.
JOAQUï¿½N NIEMANN: Yeah, I think it's kind of the same way. I think we are going to bring a lot of energy, and also, been playing with some experienced guys like Adam Scott or Jason Day, it's going to be really nice for us to grow up as a player and hopefully get the moments and experience they have in the past Presidents Cup tournaments, so they can help us to be prepared for the situation that week. I think it's going to be really fun and we are going to do great.
Q. Curious how you felt two years ago leaving Liberty National, qualifying for your first team, but walking away, what kind of feeling did you have?
ADAM HADWIN: It was pretty deflating to be honest. Obviously it was such a high being there, and being part of the team and being around some of the best players in the world was an experience that I'm never going to forget. But certainly, we left a lot to be desired on the golf course. With this Presidents Cup approaching and me starting to play some good golf again, I was just hungry for a second chance. That's not how I would like my contribution to The Presidents Cup to be remembered and I'm looking forward to having a second chance down at Royal Melbourne, a part of an incredible International Team, and hopefully we can right some of the wrongs that we've had in the past and do Captain Els proud.
Q. Given the fact that the matches are six weeks away, instead of two weeks away, is that in your mind what made you look more at long-term form than what happened yesterday?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Yeah, I think so. At the end the day, I wanted to pick guys who have played the best and who have earned their spot on the team. It was tough -- some of the calls I had to make were some of the toughest of my career so far, because I know how much the guys want to be on this team. If you were at these team meetings through the year, you could see on their faces, they are listening and they want to contribute, and the guys really stepped up. Especially since Liberty, that first event in the FedExCup Playoffs, the guys really started playing unbelievably.
And so that's kind of current form up to this point, but then reading into the statistics of what they have been doing for the last ten to 12 months, that also indicates really how well these guys have played, so they have earned their spot on to this team, through long-term and current form, and that's the way I wanted to look at it.
As you say, we're still about six weeks away. So we want guys who are solid, who are really solid long-term players.
Q. The first two picks you made, the young guys, and that gives you six rookies, will you have any problem pairing rookies together?
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: No, not at all. You know, we're going to look at all the players. I've already got some ideas what I want to do in foursomes play and the fourball play.
So we'll start activating those ideas with the players in due course, and get them to start playing some golf together if they can, or start just thinking about each other, and then even getting some of the equipment to respect players, golf balls and so forth.
We've got a lot to do, but I'm picking guys to make the team to play. I'm not here to guide anybody. I'm here to try and win enough points to get us over the line, and that's what the players' mission is, is to try and get enough points to get the Cup back, and whether that's ten rookies to do it, so be it. In many instances, this Cup will be an ice breaker on a lot of front.
Q. When did you start think about making the Presidents Cup team? Was there a point during the past season where you thought, I can get on this team if I keep playing well?
SUNGJAE IM: I had a feeling after the T-3 finish at the ZoZo Championship in Japan, with a strong finish there, I thought I had a strong chance of getting in on the Presidents Cup.
Q. On Sunday in Las Vegas, you shot a 63 and you had a shoutout to Ernie in your interview afterward. Did you hear from him after that, and also, when he finally gave you the call, when did you get the call and how did that conversation go?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, I might have been being a little cheeky there on Sunday. But I was coming off two pretty good weeks and was feeling pretty good on myself. I thought I would just throw that out there.
But no, I didn't hear from Ernie afterwards, and to be honest, probably for the better. It allowed me to just kind of keep focused on what I was doing, and trying to play good golf. I really didn't want it in my head kind of either way which way he was leaning. I just wanted to focus on what I could do and hopefully let my golf game kind of do the talking.
I got a call on Monday from Ernie, and when I saw his name flash up on my iPhone, instantly kind of got this sinking feeling and I honestly had no idea which way he was going to go. There was a lot of really good talent this year, and I know his decision was extremely difficult what we went through in New York, and Ernie being there, as well. I feel I'm that much more familiar with what's going on and I'm going to be that much more prepared.
Really looking forward to another opportunity.
Q. Not sure if Jason is on the call, but if he's not, you certainly can answer this. You spoke of his leadership earlier and talking about picking players over long form. How important is it for Jason as a leader to really step up, as I guess Presidents Cup is probably the only sort of golf form that he hasn't really nailed yet.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: I'm so excited to have Jason. I've spoken to Jason through the year quite a few times just to feel him out and see where he is, what his feeling is on playing in a team format.
He absolutely, every time I spoke to him, reiterated to him that he's absolutely 110 percent in. He wants to rectify a lot of things personally. I said to him: This is not a one-man show. Don't worry about personal records. It's all about team. I told him what an asset he can be to the team, although his record is not that great, it really doesn't matter. He's a class player.
He's a player that can play under pressure, and these are the type of players I want on the team. That's the bottom line. I want guys that can perform under pressure. You know, almost enjoy the pressure, and that's the way we're going to get it over the line. It's not going to be an easy road against a really formidable side. That's why I went with guys who can play under pressure and who have performed. Statistically, Jason has done that consistently for a long time.
Q. Have you spoken to Tiger, and if you had a chance to play against him in any of the formats, what would that mean to you?
JOAQUï¿½N NIEMANN: I'm going to be prepared for everything. I'm going to stay focused. Doesn't matter who I play, I'm going to stay focused on my game and try to do my best during the week. Just when I finish, figure out if I win or no. Just going to go there and play my game. Doesn't matter what happens outside. I'm just going to have a good week with the team and hopefully everybody enjoys that, too.
Q. Is it easy to see him as just another competitor? As your captain said, he's considered the best player of this generation by a fair piece. Would that be hard not to have a moment of kind of acknowledgment that that's who your opponent; or could you treat him as just another competitor?
JOAQUï¿½N NIEMANN: Yeah, obviously he's an unbelievable player. But yeah, I think just knowing that, seeing him play when I was a kid on TV, and if I had the chance to play against him on the match play, I think he's going to give me more like excitement to win the match, more like an energy, more, I don't know how to say it. Like I think it's going to help me more to focus and try to beat him.
Q. Just wondering how you're going to approach this year's Presidents Cup as compared to how you approached it back at Liberty National?
ADAM HADWIN: To be honest, I don't think it's going to be really much different. I'm going to get prepared to play the best golf that I can play and try and win holes. Do little things right all week. Try and put as much pressure on their game as I can, which includes, you know, just not being out of the hole. Making them earn the hole that they win, and you know, if I can do that, I think -- you know, I'm going to try and do my small part that I can for this team to win, and you know, I think if all of us just kind of take care of all the little things that we know how to do week-in and week-out, and if we can do that together, I think we have a good chance of getting to that 15 1/2 number that we need to secure another Presidents Cup.
Q. Do you feel like you have a leadership role now, this being your second Presidents Cup?
ADAM HADWIN: No, I don't think so. You know, with guys like Adam Scott and Jason Day and Leishman and Hideki, Louis, I mean, these guys have been here three, four, five times now, plus. You know, hopefully we're on these calls six to eight years down the road and I can answer yes, absolutely. But now, I think I am still in a little bit of a learning phase and still adapting and growing, and we're going to look to them for leadership, but also to some of these younger guys and some of the rookies that are coming in with no pain. They haven't experienced losing at all yet, so they are going to be fresh and they are going to be ready to go. Like Ernie said, they are going to bring this energy to the team that we have not had before, and we are going to try to put it all together as 12 men and see if we can come out victorious on the other end.
CHRIS REIMER: I believe Jason has joined us.
JASON DAY: Yeah, sorry about that. I'm driving across the East Coast of Florida to the West Coast and I've hit so many bad patches of cell phone reception. Sorry, about that guys.
CHRIS REIMER: No problem, you're getting ready to eagle the 18th hole, no worries. If any players need to hop off, understood. Jason, I'll just ask you first off, just your excitement to be named as a captain's pick and your excitement to get down to Royal Melbourne for the Presidents Cup.
JASON DAY: Yeah, this is -- firstly, I want to thank Ernie, to have the faith in me, and I'm looking forward to catching up with the whole team down in Australia. Hopefully most of the team are at the Australian Open, as well, but it's great to be able to get a captain's pick and I'm looking forward to get down to Australia and play down there.
Q. Is it your intention to play the Australian Open in Sydney, and Joaquï¿½n, how important is it for you for not only Chile but to bring the whole South American continent on board?
JOAQUï¿½N NIEMANN: Yeah, it's very big for my country, the first Chilean to play the Presidents Cup. Everybody down in Chile is really excited, and I think it's going to be a couple Chilean people going to Australia to support us, and yeah, also really big for South America. Haven't been many players from South America. I think it's going to help a lot to grow out the game over there, and it's also going to help for the future to get better players.
Yeah, I'm really excited and looking forward for that week and just can't wait.
Q. And is it your intention to play in the Australian Open?
JOAQUï¿½N NIEMANN: No, probably going to go couple days before and just going to take my time and practice the course for the Presidents Cup. Take my time on the greens and just see the course.
Q. And Adam and Sungjae?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, I don't, unfortunately, plan to play the Aussie Open. It's an event that I've wanted to play for a number of years now, and unfortunately just some timing aspects just didn't line up this year and I won't be able to go down. I know I've enjoyed my time down there in the Sandbelt playing the World Cup the last times it's been played. I'll use those experiences to draw upon for this year's Presidents Cup.
Q. Do you want the captain of the U.S. Team to play, and what would that mean to play against him in the singles on Sunday if that were to come to that?
JASON DAY: Yeah, I think he's going to be on the team. Obviously with the recent win and how he's playing, I think he's more than proved himself, and with the previous experience of what he's done, you know, in Ryder Cups and Presidents Cups beforehand.
Actually, it would be nice. I think I would actually enjoy that thoroughly, especially going down to a place where I've had success at, and then on top of it, playing in front of the home crowd, and against someone that I've respected in the golfing world for a very long time.
CHRIS REIMER: Just want to thank Jason for doing his best to be on. Again, congratulations to the four picks, Adam and Joaquï¿½n, thank you for sticking through the call with us, and Captain Els, really look forward to seeing you guys down in Australia at Royal Melbourne in December for what should be a really exciting, competitive Presidents Cup. Thanks again, and Ernie, I don't know if you have any kind of final comments for the media on the line, otherwise, we can wrap this up.
CAPTAIN ERNIE ELS: Just want to thank everybody that came on to the call this evening. You know, thanks to the players that came on. It's going to be one hell of a Cup. You know, you're going to have two very well-rounded teams. I'm sure Tiger is going to make some interesting calls tomorrow, and we'll see where it goes.
But from our point of view, we're really comfortable, very happy, and we'll be ready to go come December. So thank you very much for your interest, and thank you for your support.
CHRIS REIMER: Thank you, Ernie and thanks again to the media for joining us.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports