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November 21, 2010

Ian Poulter


Fourth Round 67. Total 258 (-22)

MICHAEL GIBBONS: Many congratulations, UBS Hong Kong Open Champion 2010, must feel pretty good.
IAN POULTER: Yes, it feels more than good. I'll be honest, the last two weeks I've been really disappointed. You know, Shanghai I was lying fourth with six holes to play.
Obviously last week, I was in the lead for a number of holes. I was in position again to win and I didn't do it. I didn't convert the putts. I played nicely on Sunday but -- on Monday shall I say and didn't quite convert the putts, and I've played great all week this week. I think today, I actually played better to shoot 3-under than I did 10-under. I don't think I've hit as many good golf shots today in a long time.
So it was nice. I felt calm all day. I felt as if I just kept going around my business, I'd make a few birdie putts and that would be enough to win. It's very pleasing to do so.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Big World Ranking points, take you up to world No. 10, big Race to Dubai points, it's all good.
IAN POULTER: It's great. I had a few objectives to get done coming out for six weeks on the bounce, and one of those was to obviously get up as high as I possibly cannot World Rankings, get up as high as I possibly can with The Race to Dubai, and try and pay for the new house that I'm building.
So I had some good motivation to come out for six weeks and play good golf.

Q. Picking up those two shots the last two holes yesterday, did that allow you to go into the round today just feeling that little bit more comfortable and confident and relaxed with your game?
IAN POULTER: Sure, it was key. Bernie said yesterday, how big were the two putts; they were massive, two 30-footers to give myself a little bit of a cushion, and you know, as good as I was playing, I still needed to hole putts. I knew the course was giving up low scores.
I knew the guys would come-from-behind and put some pressure on; they did. But to be honest, I felt comfortable all day. I'm just making notes of the putts I missed today -- I had an awful lot of chances out there today. I felt very calm and very relaxed all day.

Q. I suppose it's never just one hole but seems like the turning point was 13. Can you walk us through the eagle?
IAN POULTER: Sure, driver, right half of the fairway, had 231 into the breeze. Hit a cut 5-wood to about 15 feet and rolled it in the middle.

Q. Did you know after you made that putt that you were going to win the tournament?
IAN POULTER: I said earlier, I felt comfortable the whole day. The way I was hitting it, I was hitting it inside 12 feet pretty much nearly every hole out there.
So if I kept doing that, I'd be very tough to beat. Holing that putt there gave me that little bit of a cushion and from then, I gave myself five chances coming in. So you know, I was fairly, fairly comfortable.

Q. Having won in your first appearance in Hong Kong, but also earlier in the year winning the Match Play and being on the winning Ryder Cup Team, what sort of season would you say?
IAN POULTER: It's a very good season. To get off to such a flying start, obviously winning the Match Play was huge, and I think obviously my focus went through the middle part of the season. I've certainly been able to get that back. Getting revved up for The Ryder Cup was huge, as strong as I played, gave me a lot of confidence to take four weeks off, rest up for a few weeks and practise the same stuff as what I did to get ready for The Ryder Cup and come out strong for the back end of the year.
So, yeah, it's another great year.

Q. You've won on the U.S. Tour; how do events like this compare to outside the bigger tournaments and how much satisfaction is there to winning here as there would be to winning in America?
IAN POULTER: Well, it's an Open tournament, so it always holds more World Ranking points. It's been on The European Tour for a long time. It's a good golf course. It's a course that has been played on many, many times.
So this is a big tournament. And any win, whether it be PGA Tour or European Tour is a great one to win. It's got a slightly different atmosphere. It's hard to get 30,000, 40,000 people around this golf course, but yet the fans that do come out and follow make this a fantastic tournament.

Q. Do you think No. 1 in the world is realistic next year?
IAN POULTER: I'll try and win next week first I think to be honest with you. I'm not playing the game saying, I'm going to get to No. 1; tried that once before and didn't work.
I think you know I'll just try winning next week and see how high I can go. Tiger has dropped a lot of points. Westwood is world No. 1, and if I keep playing well, then who knows. You know, could get up there.

Q. What's your favourite Chinese dish, and would you put any in the trophy to share with your family?
IAN POULTER: I don't know, I could get a lot of Cheerios in there, probably half a bag I would think.
But my favourite Chinese dish, sweet and sour chicken. (Laughter).

Q. Will you share that with your kids?
IAN POULTER: Yeah, why not? Yeah, they love Chinese food, as well. I'm a huge Chinese food fan. So, yeah, we can celebrate with a little take away.

Q. So will you put that on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook?
IAN POULTER: Sure, I would do, if they let me take the trophy home, but I'm not sure they will let me, though (laughing).

Q. When you had that less-than-a-foot putt to win the tournament, you still used the putter to aim so were you just --
IAN POULTER: What do you think? I think I could have holed that one with my eyes shot. So a bit of fun for everybody. (Laughter).

Q. We have heard the story that McIlroy will not keep his PGA Tour card next year because he's feeling kind of lonely playing on the PGA Tour in the U.S. How about your experience playing on the PGA Tour, and also, regarding to your big house, is that the one in Orlando, or back in Europe?
IAN POULTER: Orlando, that one, the house. I live in Orlando, so the family is schooled there, I have three children, two of which school in the States. So I'm very happy playing both tours, playing The European Tour and the PGA Tour.
Rory lives in Ireland. His family are in Ireland. So therefore, you know, for him, I guess it's difficult to see being over that side of the pond.
So for him, it's an easy decision, and for me, I'm happy playing golf where I am.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Ian, UBS open Hong Kong champion.
IAN POULTER: Thank you very much.

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