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October 29, 2014

Danny Chia


THE MODERATOR:テつ Let's welcome Danny Chia to the media center.テつ Thank you so much for joining us.テつ I think this is your first time playing the CIMB Classic.テつ Tell us your thoughts on returning here.
DANNY CHIA:テつ It's an honor for me to come and play again this week.テつ I'm always looking for a better result than the last two outcomes.

Q.テつ Talk about your preparation for this week.
DANNY CHIA:テつ Well, since my surgery, I came back beginning of this year, and I mean, the most thing that I'm concerned about is my recovery of my body condition.テつ Surprisingly, I mean, I've been playing quite decent since I've come back out, and still doing a lot of rehab and working with my physio, and then I'm doing a bit of working on my swing with my coach, Steven Giuliano.
Everything has been quite in place, and I'm quite happy about it at the moment here.

Q.テつ You were struggling in the last two events in Hong Kong and Macao.テつ Do you think you'll be able to bounce back here?
DANNY CHIA:テつ It's just a couple of loose shots during the last two weeks that I had, and it's no big deal.テつ It's just part of the game.テつ Sometimes you play well, sometimes one or two shots can cost you a cut or maybe even an event.テつ I'm still quite confident that I'm going to do okay here.

Q.テつ Considering where you were at this stage last year, what does it mean for you to be back here talking to us in relation to your golf career as opposed to 12 months ago when you just had your surgery and not playing any golf?
DANNY CHIA:テつ Well, I didn't really talk about that, but since you asked, I guess it's probably a dream come true for me from last year that I can't even lift up my right arm to today playing this event.テつ I think it's quite a big achievement considering what I have gone through.テつ I'm very pleased, and I'm very happy with that, yeah.

Q.テつ You've done a lot for Malaysian golf, and we thank you for that.テつ There was a time when you were having a problem with your mind in the context of being positive.テつ You could play three good rounds and then didn't do so well in the last round.テつ Have you been working with your sports psychologist, and have you recovered from that phase in your career?
DANNY CHIA:テつ I used to have a sports psychologist.テつ One of the main issues that she spotted in my game was focus during a round, focus on shot after shot after shot.テつ I think I got better with that and I'm doing quite well with that.テつ What it means for me is just playing the bigger events and get more exposure.テつ I believe the experience will get my mental stronger.

Q.テつ Does the responsibility of representing Malaysia present a problem for you in front of the home crowd?
DANNY CHIA:テつ They're always there.テつ I mean, it's great to have home crowd support for me to play whenever I play in Malaysia.テつ It's just that I have to find a way to cope with that and I have to learn to love that feeling instead of fear of that.テつ I think I've gotten over that about two or three years ago.

Q.テつ You've spoken a lot about your injury in the past, but I think it hasn't been really clear what you actually went through 12 months ago.テつ Can you just tell us what was the situation back then that resulted in you eventually going for surgery, and did you ever think that you would be playing golf again during that time?
DANNY CHIA:テつ OK, it's going to be a long story.テつ I think it started somewhere in June.テつ I felt a real sharp pain on my neck, and then it leads all the way to my right shoulder.テつ In the beginning I thought it was just some small injury that I had, and I just ignored it.テつ I took a lot of painkillers to continue playing, and by July, I started to realize the pain is unbearable, I can't even sleep.テつ I went 48 hours without sleep.テつ At that time I felt it was very serious, so I went and talked to my physio, where he was looking after me for the last two years, and we did one MRI, and then he couldn't solve the problem, and it got worse and worse, and it took a lot of strength off my right arm.
We did another MRI‑‑ in total we did three MRIs to find out the root of the problem.テつ It was my C4‑C5 on my neck the disk was way out, and then I had a bone spur.テつ I think the fragment of my bone was pressing on my nerve that controls my whole right arm.
By the time we found out, I already couldn't lift up my right arm.テつ I pretty much‑‑ my right arm is paralyzed, and there's no feeling in my right arm at all.
You know, I had to make a quick decision to do surgery, and I'm glad I made that decision.テつ Very quickly I was admitted to the hospital and did the surgery, and straight away my right arm came back the sensation, like I can try to lift the arm slowly.テつ From there it's just a lot of rehab, and then by January my first golf game in January, obviously hitting my driver like 200 meters just to play a round.
At that time during the injury when I couldn't lift up my arm, I think playing golf wasn't the biggest issue for me.テつ If I could continue to play golf‑‑ I mean, I think the lifestyle is more that I'm worried about, like being paralyzed in my arm.テつ As I said, by today, I'm very happy with what was the outcome of the surgery.

Q.テつ This must feel like a second chance in your golfing life, as well, doesn't it?
DANNY CHIA:テつ Yeah.テつ I mean, I look at things a lot different now since the comeback.テつ Before, part of the injury, I think the reason was is me being too stubborn and not listening to my body.テつ A lot of times my body say that I'm getting weak in the right shoulder and it's telling me to stop.テつ Instead of that, I took a lot of painkillers to keep me playing.テつ That's what I get.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Thank you, Danny.テつ Good luck this week.

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