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November 25, 2009

Gonzalo Fernandez Castano

Sergio Garcia


MICHAEL GIBBONS: Gonzalo, Sergio, welcome to the OMEGA Mission Hills World Cup. If you could start us off with your thoughts going into the week and go from there.
SERGIO GARCIA: No, we are very excited. We had a nice look at the course today. The course looks in very good shape. Nice kind of course with a nice mix of some holes that are tight holes and risk/reward, and we are looking forward to it.
We need to probably catch up a little on sleep but other than that, I think that we are feeling good and we are looking forward to the challenge and hopefully to give it our best and be up there on Sunday with a chance of winning the World Cup.
GONZALO FERNANDEZ-CASTAÑO: Well, I really like the course. I have to say, I was surprised. I think Ollie did a great job. It's quite a hilly course. It's going to be tough for caddies, but I think we will be fine. Some challenging holes, starting with 15, the par 5 over the water and a great finishing hole at the 18th.
[So really looking forward to the week. I think Sergio is playing well, hitting the ball very well, and I'm hitting the ball decent. So I think we might have a chance on the weekend.

Q. It's been 25 years since Spain last won. How confident are you, and secondly, who do you see as your main challengers?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yes, as you said, it has been a while. We had some good chances of winning it. I remember 2004 with Miguel Angel and myself, and a couple other chances we've had, too. I mean, we are feeling pretty good. I think that we are hitting the ball quite solid. It just a matter of being able to go out there and roll some putts in, put some good scores in there. Foursomes are always important to make sure that you do fairly well there.
I think that there's a lot of good teams out there. I wouldn't like to beat just one. I think that England is a good team. Sweden is a great team. Germany has a good, solid team. Italy with the Molinari brothers, they are playing both well. Ireland, obviously. So there's a good amount of teams out there that you have to look out for. So I think that OMEGA and Mission Hills and everybody up here should be very happy about the tournament.

Q. Is there a lot of pressure on you?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I think that the pressure, it's not about the amount of good teams that you have. There's always going to be good prayers playing no matter what. So I think that the ultimate pressure is about trying to win the tournament itself and that's where you try your hardest.
Like I said before, there's a lot of good teams out there. But we also have a good team. We should be very proud of that. So if we manage to use our talent, talent we have, and the capabilities that we have, I think that we should be contenders to the title.

Q. The last win you had on The European Tour was the HSBC last November. Unfortunately no win this year in 2009. If you have the chance to pick up the trophy on Sunday, will this make it a successful year for you?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah it, it would be a nice way to finish the year. It has been a hard year overall, but at the same time, I think it's been very positive. I think that it's made me grow a lot, not only as a player, but as a person.
Obviously looking at the results, it has not been a very good year. But I feel like my game in the past probably in the past 3 1/2 months has been improving, and that's a positive for next year.

Q. When you through into Hong Kong yesterday, was there maybe a bit of trouble with the plane or something? Was it a kind of scary experience?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, we almost died. (Laughter).
No. (Laughter).
No, no, it was a little problem. We should have been here on Monday night, but unfortunately we had a little problem with the plane in Dubai, so we couldn't take off until Tuesday, so we lost one day. But no, it was fine. That was the only little thing. It was just a minor little thing that unfortunately didn't allow us to take off on Monday.

Q. And also, with quite a few teams, especially Ireland with McIlroy and McDowell playing together with good chemistry at the Seve Trophy, and this is your first time playing together at the World Cup, what is the chemistry between you two?
GONZALO FERNANDEZ-CASTAÑO: Well, we are good friends. We don't have --
SERGIO GARCIA: We don't know each other. (Laughter).
GONZALO FERNANDEZ-CASTAÑO: We don't have any records playing professionally in the World Cup, but we've played a lot of amateur golf together. And, well, it's good to play with a friend.
So I think it's going to be fun. At least I'm really looking forward to it. I'm really glad that Sergio picked me to be here, and I think that we combine very well together.
SERGIO GARCIA: At least one of us is looking forward to it. (Laughter).

Q. Can you talk about this course, designed by José Maria Olazábal, who is Spanish --
SERGIO GARCIA: Is he? (Looking surprised)

Q. Definitely.
SERGIO GARCIA: Not Chinese? (Laughter).

Q. You have also been a course designer; what do you think about this course? Can you talk about from both sides, from designer.
SERGIO GARCIA: Like I said before, I think the course is a nice course. It has a good mix of different holes which is nice to see. You don't like the kind of course that you go to every time, it looks like you're playing the same hole.
So you have some tight holes, you have some wider holes, but then some water around the greens. You can put some really good pin positions in some of these greens, and it's just a typical José Maria course, where obviously the premium is accuracy at some point, and then making sure that the shots to the green have to be very well struck to be able to hit it close.
I think it's a very solid course, you have to play solid around the greens and tests your chipping, too. As you said, I've done a little bit of work in a design kind of way, a couple of things in San Antonio with Greg Norman and some other projects that we haven't finished yet. But it's good fun to be able to get the chance of doing some of that work, putt a little bit of the things that you like to see on the golf course, and you know, we are working on that.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Gonzalo, Sergio, thank you for joining us.

End of FastScripts

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