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November 20, 2022

Jon Rahm

Dubai, UAE

Jumeirah Golf Estates

Press Conference

TOM CARLISLE: Good afternoon, we are delighted to be joined by Jon Rahm in the Media Centre, capturing a victory here at the Jumeirah Golf Estates, a fifth Rolex Series title. How special is this moment?

JON RAHM: It's very special. I said that I feel like that I'm defending the title three years ago that I couldn't come and defend. Proud of myself for that and how well I've done, especially on the weekend.

It's pretty unusual for me to win a tournament driving it as bad as I did, and to have the other parts of my game carry me to my win, it's something really special. I managed it really well, and I felt really comfortable on the greens made a couple of clutch putts; a switch that, you know, for a year where I've been hearing my putting has been bad, it feels really amazing to get it done like that.

Q. This is your third win in four starts here, an incredible stat. You must have felt unbeatable out there.

JON RAHM: I feel fairly confident on the golf course, yes. Obviously I'm not thinking about the statistics while I'm playing, but yeah -- best way to say it, for some reason, every time I'm on the tee box, I'm confident, I'm cost in my swing and it clearly showed in my golf.

Q. We started the week talking about the World Rankings and this puts you at No. 5, but you're so much better than the fifth-best player in the world. You've had a good year.

JON RAHM: What you said. I don't know if I can add to that to be honest.

Yeah, I mean, I beat amazing players today. I don't know if I can add any more to what I said. Maybe I was too far back, I don't know. I've gone second, first, fourth, second -- first, sorry, and I have not changed my World Ranking. I don't know if that explains what I meant the other day but it should.

I feel like it gets to a point where your play should start to be rewarded -- especially when I play -- I understand why they did the changes they made where it would be a perfect system and every single field is 150 -- I'll say one more time, we don't get the same points for our win here, it's a bit of a joke.

Q. The European Tour made a very nice initiative this year, as you can see, the winner has a trophy for disabled players. Do you think maybe they should give them a little cash as well?

JON RAHM: I don't understand the last part. What did you say?

Q. They don't get prize money.

JON RAHM: They don't?

Q. No.

JON RAHM: They should. They are on TV, right? They should, yeah. Well deserved. It's hard enough to play golf for normal people, and it's even harder to play golf when you have some type of disability. I'm decently close with Juan Postigo, and to see him hit the golf ball is one of the most amazing things you'll ever see on a golf course. How good he can hit it, how far he can hit it one-legged is truly incredible.

I hope they keep this initiative and they keep it going because I truly think it is a wonderful thing to have something like that for them but yeah, there should be some prize. Some of them have actual sponsors and put in the time, and I think it would only be fair for them to get paid.

Q. Being out of position sometimes these days, and you had a fantastic recovery today at 9, so which has been the best for you in the week?

JON RAHM: The best?

Q. The best recovery.

JON RAHM: There's more than I would like. There's been a couple, but I think the best shot out of the trouble, if it's not the second shot on 18, I think the second shot on to 1 today was by far the best. With the tree in the way, having started so far right and hooked it and made sure it wasn't completely laughable and try to give myself a birdie chance, I would say that was the best one for sure.

If not, the bunker shot on 12. Those three shots, second shot on 18 today, second shot on 12 today and second shot on one today, they were all really good.

Q. It's been an amazing year. What are your goals for next year, maybe a little better in the majors or what is the goal you want to set for 2023?

JON RAHM: Definitely play better in the majors. I've won one. I want to get the second one for sure. Yeah, hopefully keep doing well like I've been doing in other events but majors for sure.

Q. Luke Donald must have been smiling looking at the leaderboard today; you're surrounded by potential teammates. Did that occur to you at any point?

JON RAHM: Not going to lie -- Luke Donald never crossed my mind on the golf course today (laughing) even though I love him and I know he's going to be a great captain, I had enough going ton with playing a round of golf out there today.

But it truly is. I haven't looked at the full leaderboard, but I know it's myself, Tyrrell, Alex and Rory in the top four, and I don't know who is after that. I think Rasmus -- well, the first six names, Adrian, strong case for Ryder Cup. Definitely the first six names, if you were to take a team right now right here -- yeah, it's great to have people that you want playing great in the big events and the season next year as well. It shows the golf course is playing challenging and windy, this course, bermudarough, not the easiest.

We also have two other Spanish in the top 10, I believe. So I'm going to pull for home soil a little bit.

But yeah, I mean, I know he's got a lot of names in mind and he's going to have six picks, so I know it's going to be a bit of a headache for him. I don't envy that decision whatsoever.

Q. At what point of time during the round did you start thinking that, okay, this thing is under my control, despite the way that you were hitting the golf ball?

JON RAHM: When I hit my second shot on 18 and I had 65 yards to the pin. Then I was like, okay, now we're good. Up until then, no. I definitely made it more stressful. It's only a two-shot lead. If I hit it in the water on 18, I have to do good to make a bogey, or just hoping to keep it on dry land. I was in control of myself but I can't control what other people do.

So yeah, once I laid up on 18, I was pretty sure I could get up-and-down in four shots.

Q. Every season seems to be getting busier and busier. You still have one more event to go. After a week like this, which was high stress, how do you approach an event at the Hero which, it's a nice event, very strong event, but you know, it doesn't get you a major. Make no mistake, I like that event.

JON RAHM: No, to be fair, the Hero is almost apprise and a celebration for a year well done for the people who are getting there, and I'm taking the whole family with me. It's the first time since the U.S. Open that my family has travelled to a tournament, so I'm feeling it more -- I'm going to win, and off the course a bit of family vacation and enjoy some time with them, getting used to travelling again. Because come in January, they are going to have to travel with me everywhere. And I mean, I have a week off and it's Thanksgiving, so it's going to be a lot of get-togethers, a lot of time with people. I'm sure all of my friends are going to want to celebrate this, which I'm not opposed to, obviously, and yeah, probably a lot of fun times, a lot of eating, I'm really good at that, as well, and probably a few drinks to enjoy the week and a week off before we go to the Bahamas.

Q. I wanted to ask you about your Halloween costume. Do you give that much thought to everything that you do, your golf, obviously you give that much thought, but whose idea was that?

JON RAHM: Mine. Mine 100 percent. When Kelley and I were thinking about what to do for the whole family, costumes for the entire family, we try to keep it on a children theme. One of my favourite movies of all time is always going to be The Lion King, right. So I was like, okay, I have to be Rafiki, there's no question about that. And then, you know, who can be Simba, who can be Mufasa. But I'll be Rafiki and then we can recreate the actual opening scene. My son, Kepa, loved it. I throw him up in the air all the time but he loved wearing the costume, and he loved doing the scene. Eneko was a little too young. It's not like I did that much stuff -- it was just instant. Hopefully in the future, our kids are old enough to tell us what they want to be. But while I can choose, that was what it was going to be.

There were a couple others. I'm sure at some point I'm sure we will be some characters from the movie Trolls. Definitely somebody from How to Train Your Dragon, and a couple others that there will be in the future for sure.

TOM CARLISLE: We'll look forward to Halloween then. Thank you very much for your time and congratulations.

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