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November 12, 2006

Yong-Eun Yang

Final Round

CHUAH CHOO CHIANG we have Yong Eun Yang in here from Korea, the new winner of the HSBC Champions. Congratulations on a great win. How do you feel right now?

YONG EUN YANG: First of all, I don't even know why I'm sitting here to be honest. It just feels so new right now.

CHUAH CHOO CHIANG: Defeating Tiger Woods, just what does this victory mean in your career?

YONG EUN YANG: You know, this is such a big thing that's happening to me right now, such a big moment in my life right now, that it's really hard for me to explain in words how I feel right now.

CHUAH CHOO CHIANG: You had a great front nine to pull four shots clear, but you had an interesting back nine with the bogeys. Just talk us through the final moments of the final round.

YONG EUN YANG: I played pretty well, pretty steady for the first 15 holes. But when I got to the 16th hole, my second shot, I had about 110 yards left to the pin. I used my wedge and I was targeting to the middle of the green but ended up landing about one or two yards short and ended up bogeying the hole.

So from that point on, I started getting a little bit nervous.

Q. How did you feel when Retief Goosen went into the water at the 18th?

YONG EUN YANG: When Goosen's ball went into the water, you know if Goosen didn't have an eagle, then he had to have an eagle, so I felt as long as I get a par, I would be okay. I just thought that my focus was just to get the ball on the green.

But when Goosen's ball went into the water, I just felt, you know, that I should I shouldn't hit it into the water, as well. Taking that, I kind of felt a little bit nervous, so I feel my shot was a little bit long.

Q. This win means that you will most probably get into the top 50 of the world and you will get a European Tour card. So are you looking forward to playing more events in Europe, and are you looking forward to the majors next year? And also, I wanted to ask you, what are your hobbies besides playing golf?

YONG EUN YANG: You know, every week after a tournament, it's been my habit to check the World Ranking list, and I try to figure out which events I could get into. You know, starting this week, I noticed that this tournament has a great field and if I were to win it, it would have been worth a lot of World Ranking points.

So now that I've won, I expect to play a lot of tournaments. I want to play a lot of tournaments overseas, both Europe and the United States and Japan. I just want to be able to compete with the best players in the word, and I think this win has given me that chance.

To answer the second part of that question, my hobby is fishing. I haven't had a lot of time to fish, but I would like to try to find more time to fish.

Q. If someone had hold you last week that you would be sitting here in front of us as a champion, what would you have told them? And second, could you clear up what your position in the U.S. Qualifying School is?

YONG EUN YANG: If someone told me I was going to win this week, I just would have laughed and taken it as a joke and said, "You've got to be kidding me. Yeah, I'm going to win," that's how I would have taken it as.

As far as the final Q School of the year on the PGA Tour, after next week's tournament in Japan, the Dunlop Phoenix, I plan to go to the U.S. to Palm Springs, California, and start preparing myself for the final Q School in the U.S.

Q. You have performed really well during the round, and at the same time, a lot of world class players like Goosen, they kind of didn't do so well at the end of the tournament. Do you think there's a lot of luck involved in this event today?

YONG EUN YANG: Yes, I think there was luck involved. Back I think around the 15th hole, when Goosen bogeyed, the lead was increased to two shots.

So you know, I always tell myself that, you know, it's never over until the final 18th hole, and even if you have a two , three or four shot lead, you never know what can happen. A four shot lead could be gone in a matter of a few holes.

So I just try to focus, and when Goosen bogeyed the final hole, I didn't want to lose focus until the final moment.

Q. The last couple of weeks, we have seen K.J. Choi win in the U.S. and Jeev Milkha Singh win in Europe, and today you won of the biggest events. Why are the Korean players doing so well lately? And also, do you see any Asian players winning a major in the future?

YONG EUN YANG: When K.J. won in the U.S., I felt that Korean players, Asian players would eventually follow in his footsteps and I thought to myself, you know, I think we Koreans and Asians have a chance to win in the world. That's why I started out playing in Asia on the Asian Tour and I went on playing on the Japanese Tour. My eventual goal was to go to the U.S. Tour just like K.J. Choi did. I think K.J. set a good example and I wanted to follow in his footsteps.

As far as Asian winning major tournaments in the future, I think that's a very realistic possibility. I think to any player who gives 100% and tries their best, has a good chance of winning a major in the near future.

Q. When did K.J. talk to you?

YONG EUN YANG: He told me that playing in Japan is also good, but that I should consider seriously playing tournaments out on The European Tour because it's actually, you know, I would get to play with bigger fields and it would be a good experience for me if my ultimate goal is to go to the PGA Tour. So he told me, he advised that it would be a good opportunity for me to play on The European Tour.

Q. What do you think is the best part of your game today, and can you give any suggestion to someone who has not won any events on the Asian Tour or on any other tour from Asia?

YONG EUN YANG: I think the strong part about my game is being cool under pressure. I always try to find a way not to break under pressure because I know that if I break under pressure, then I can't control my body. I try very hard to make my mental part of my game and the physical part of my game to be consistent.

As far as giving advice to other Asian players who haven't won, I don't think I'm in a situation to say, you know, do this or do that.

I just think that, you know, if you just really put your heart into it and just give a 110 per cent, then eventually you'll find a way to win.

CHUAH CHOO CHIANG: Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen, and many congratulations again, Mr. Yang.

End of FastScripts.

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