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November 28, 2009

Charlie Wi

Yong-Eun Yang


CALVIN KOH: Thanks, guys, for coming today. You shot a brilliant 61, overcoming yesterday's 75. I'm sure you're pretty pleased with what you've done today. Just take us through your round.
CHARLIE WI: Well, Y.E. got off to a great start. He shot 30 by himself on the front nine, and I was able to contribute a little bit on the back nine. He played really beautifully. And you know, shooting 61, you know, you both have to contribute, and I think that we were very lucky in the sense that we were able to make the putts at the right time. You can make birdies, but we didn't make birdies on the same hole. We always birdied the holes that the other partner didn't birdie.
So you know, shooting 61, if you would have said we would shoot 61 before we teed off, we would have been very pleased. Hopefully tomorrow we are able to continue on from what we did yesterday.
Y.E. YANG: I played well on the front nine and Charlie played better on the back nine. It was a combination of good timing and rhythm. We both clicked at the right times. When I birdied, Charlie parred, and when Charlie parred, I birdied. So it was a good combination today, and that's I think why we are here right now with a 61 today.
CALVIN KOH: You have the foursomes format tomorrow; if you can share your thoughts going into the final round tomorrow.
CHARLIE WI: I think that after shooting 75 yesterday, I know Ireland was six shots in front of us, but I thought that we could do really well. So I think we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to perform yesterday.
I think that tomorrow our goal will be just to relax and to play our game and not put too much pressure on ourselves. We almost made it like it was do-or-die yesterday, and I know that we made a lot of mistakes. And tomorrow we will just relax and play like it's a practise round.
Y.E. YANG: Well, with the bad experience yesterday, I think tomorrow going in, I don't think we are going to have that much of a bad experience as yesterday. Charlie and I, we are probably going to try and relax and take a lot of pressure off ourselves and just try and play our game, as we did today.

Q. Y.E., you seem to be very calm on the golf course when you play, almost you look like an Army general or soldier. Is that something that is inside you that you just really know how to calm yourself down? And if you're not playing well during the round, how do you keep yourself relaxed?
Y.E. YANG: I tried to take my tournament round as a practise round and just go out, and it's the same thing. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday is the same as Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
And I just try not to get ahead of myself, especially my mind and my expectations of my shot, my hole, the whole day, the whole tournament. I just try to take it one shot at a time, try not to get ahead, try to put some pressure on myself, try to have high expectations.
So if you do that, I think you concentrate, and you get some kind of mellow type of tempo in yourself which helps you look as if you're really calm on the course.

Q. As the first Asian to win a US PGA, how does your life feel like it's changed since winning? And what kind of suggestions would you give Asian golfers on how to improve their skills and to play on a very high level in the future.
Y.E. YANG: On the first question, after winning the PGA Championship, if you look back in my life over 2008, it was very insecure and I had to go to Q-School at the end of the year. At the beginning of this year, as well, I was really worried about my job security, playing golf as a job for me.
After my win, a lot of things have changed but personally for me, I have gained job security for a long time now. Like all of you who work for a living, job security, getting job security for five-plus years is a huge deal. That has given me a lot of stability, and it has enabled me to go more relaxed on the course, as well.
And on your second question, before I go into any advice on skill sets or how to train or etc., etc., I'd like to just urge all of the Asian amateurs and aspiring professional golfers that you know, a player like myself can win a major. Anybody in Asia has a chance of winning a major. I just hope that my win has boosted and fuels a lot of confidence in a lot of young people, and hopefully in the next year or year after, there will be another Asian major winner.

Q. Do you still have a chance of winning here, or did yesterday's round basically cost you that opportunity?
CHARLIE WI: I'm not really sure, because I don't know how Ireland is going to finish up today. I don't know how we are going to finish up today. I know Ireland probably has nine more holes to go, and we played with them on Thursday and they are playing really well. I mean, Rory and Graeme, they are hitting so nice and they are making the putts when they need to. Depends how they finish up today.
For maybe two, three, four, five shots back, we might have a chance, but if it's more than that, it will be really tough to catch them tomorrow.

Q. Have you heard anything about Tiger's car accident this morning? Do you know anything about it?
Y.E. YANG: I was playing golf. (Laughter).

Q. It was 2:30 in the morning at Orlando at his home in Isleworth. Do you know anything about the car accident?
Y.E. YANG: No.

Q. Has he sent you an SMS to tell you about it?
Y.E. YANG: Tiger has not called me personally, so I don't know. Hopefully it's not a big injury. Hopefully it's not a big injury for the sake of the PGA TOUR, because it will be a big hit for the PGA TOUR if he's injured. So hopefully he will be in good condition for next season and I'll see him in Hawaii.

Q. After winning the PGA Championship, and golf will be an official event in the Olympic Games in 2016. As a country, Korea, will probably put in more efforts and put in more development in maybe training golfers in Korea, and do you think team Korea will be one of favorite teams to win the gold medal in the Olympic Games, and will you be interested in taking part in that?
Y.E. YANG: The first question pertaining to will the Korean government put in more efforts; yes, I do believe the Korean government and the Olympic Committee will put in a lot of effort to find the most efficient way to bring up golf, golf athletics and Olympic golf players and try to develop golf in preparation for the 2016 Olympics.
There is ample time, so I think the government together with the Korean Olympic Committee will find a good solution on how to bring up golf in Korea.
The second question, I do think that Korea, not just with the PGA players, but also with the up-and-coming Korean players, playing domestically and on the Asian Tour and European Tour, I think we have a lot of promise as a country in golf. Not just with the dominant women's side, but also with the men's side, and we still have got about seven years left. So there's so many possibilities right now.
And third, well, pertaining to whether or not I want to participate in the Olympics, I've never been in the Olympics before, so it's definitely -- it will definitely be a dream come true. If I could participate as a golfer, as an athlete, I would be more than welcome and open to that concept. If not, I would really still want to be part of it as a coach or a general manager of the national team.

Q. You accomplished a lot of goal this year; do you have goals for next year? How many majors do you want to have?
Y.E. YANG: It's really hard to put a finger to targets in one's career, especially in an athlete's career. If it's a salesperson, it would probably be a bit more easier.
But for my case, I definitely want to win a few more tournaments, but I won't go into detail in how many. I'm not going to promise anybody on how many tournaments I'm going to win. I am going to promise you, though, that I am going to try my best in each and every tournament and try to, if not win, at least come up with a good result in every tournament.
So hopefully if I can do that and I can try my best, something good will transpire and I can get a few more wins under my belt.

Q. Other than playing in Sheshan and Mission Hills, have you been to any part of China, especially the central province?
Y.E. YANG: I think it's back in '99, 2000, I played the Volvo China Open, or the China Open, I don't know who the sponsor was. The tournament was in a golf course near probably the outskirts of Shanghai. I can't remember the actual name of the course. And apart from that, I played in Sheshan and I've played in Mission Hills. I think that's the only golf courses I've ever experienced in China.
But I'd like to play in some other areas, as well.
CALVIN KOH: Thank you.

End of FastScripts

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