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October 28, 2014

Hideki Matsuyama


THE MODERATOR:テつ We'd like to welcome Hideki Matsuyama to the interview room.テつ Hideki won in 2014 the Memorial Tournament.テつ If you could, Hideki, just some opening thoughts about last season and then maybe some comments about being here this week.
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ After the TOUR Championship, I had three weeks off, was able to go back to Japan, get refreshed, and able to start the new season off well at Frys and at Las Vegas.テつ I had two good finishes there.

Q.テつ This is not your first time here.テつ Tell us a little bit about the golf course; have you played it this week?テつ Compare it to last year when you were here.テつ And secondly, your role in Asia, do you see the growth of golf in Asia now developing more and more?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ I haven't played the course.テつ Just got into town last night, and so this will be my first practice round today.テつ Regarding the growth of golf in Asia, you're seeing a great influx of Korean players, Japanese players, playing on all the different Tours throughout the world.テつ As a representative of Japan, I need to do my very best on the PGA TOUR to represent Asia well.

Q.テつ At HSBC last year you had to withdraw because of injuries and kind of struggled with injuries the latter part of last year, but right now you're third place in the power rankings coming into this tournament.テつ How do you feel about your chances this week?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ I don't really know a lot about power rankings.テつ Being third on the power ranking I guess is a good thing, but what would really make me happy is to play well here at this tournament at the end of the week.テつ I didn't come to finish third this week, I've come to win, so I'm going to do my best to try to do that.
You're right, last year this tournament I wasn't in my best form, and HSBC had to withdraw, and then in Japan when I played there, it was a struggle.テつ But over the off‑season I changed a lot of my training methods, changed trainers, and really this year August, from August on, I really felt to be in the best condition of my life, so it's really been a great help changing that training routine and my new trainer.

Q.テつ Just as a follow‑up to the development of golf in Asia, do you see all golfers still having to go to America or Europe to develop their golf?テつ How long will it be before within Asia we can develop golfers without having the cost and the change of climate, the change of environment of going somewhere else to get to the top?テつ At the moment we have golfers such as yourself and Ryo and Thongchai; all the time we're getting more and more Asian golfers, but they all have to go to another country before they can become the top of the tree.
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ I think that the day the Asian golfers can master their games here in Asia is still a little way off.テつ I think for myself anyway, going abroad and playing with the best players in the world has really helped out.テつ I think the day will come, though, when players like me will return to their home countries and help the younger players to develop their game.テつ For my example, Shigeki Maruyama, I owe a lot to him because he played, what, eight, nine years on the PGA TOUR, but has come back and helped mentor me on what to expect and how to prepare and what lies ahead for me in the United States.
Hopefully someday I can do the same for the younger players in Japan.

Q.テつ You got off to a good start at Frys, a third place there and then a 10th at Las Vegas.テつ Afterwards you mentioned the need to improve putting and shot making.テつ Also, regarding your clubs, I heard that you're trying out new clubs; where do you stand there?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ Last year, again, at the end of the TOUR Championship after playing seven weeks in a row, I went back to Japan and just left my clubs alone.テつ I didn't touch a club for a while and just tried to not think anything about golf.テつ I was able to get refreshed.
As far as trying out new clubs, I'm going to be doing that this week and next.

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