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February 27, 2013

Shanshan Feng


KELLY THESIER:テつ We'd like to welcome Shanshan Feng into the interview room, thank you so much for joining us today.
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ Thank you.
KELLY THESIER:テつ You were out there on the golf course this morning, we all know different golf course this year than what you guys have played in the past.テつ Initial thoughts on the golf course, and what do you think are going to be the keys for players to play well this week on this golf course?
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ Actually I think that this golf course is quite different from the one we used to play, and I think it's more tricky because there are a lot of dog‑leg holes and I would think the fairways are really tight, so I would think driving is really important this week.
KELLY THESIER:テつ Some of the other players, Stacy and Michelle, they were joking about how much the caddies were going to get a workout this week in terms of figuring out distances and everything.テつ Is that going to be one of those things where even long hitters are going to have to hit 3‑woods at times and you're going to have to really think your way around this golf course.
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ Oh, yes, because of those dog‑leg holes, they are designed for like, you have to play lay up.テつ You can't really go forward.
So like for example, No. 3, I wouldn't hit like a driver off the tee, because I would be either on like a steep slope or in the woods.
So I was hitting 3‑hybrid actually, and second shot I was hitting 4‑hybrid to like a front pin, which, you know, doesn't really make sense to me.テつ But I mean, if we are playing the same situation, it's fine for me.
KELLY THESIER:テつ It's been quite a year for you over the past year, becoming a Major Champion, being the first player from China to win on the LPGA Tour.テつ Take me through this past year.テつ What has it been like for you, and how different is it to come into a season this time around having captured a victory on the LPGA Tour; do you have a little bit more confidence coming into this year?
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ I would say I had a really good beginning last year, because I was fifth in Thailand, and I was in a playoff here, but of course I lost.テつ I won in China the week after, so after that great beginning, and then I think I gained a lot of confidence, and that was why I kept winning tournaments last year.テつ I think totally, I won six including a major, which was my first win on the LPGA in five years, so it got me into a lot of stuff.テつ I was really happy I got my first win on the Tour.
This year, I thought about this year, I think my goal will be win two tournaments on the LPGA.
KELLY THESIER:テつ We are actually going to China this year on the LPGA Tour.テつ A lot of that has to do with your success and there's growing interest in the game of golf in China.テつ What have you noticed since your victory in terms of the reception of golfers there and the interest, especially with the Olympics coming around the corner, has the interest in golf really started to grow in China?
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ I would say, of course, I did win a major last year, but golf right now in China, nothing can compare to maybe tennis.テつ Like when Li Na won the major, she became like so famous in China, everybody would know her if they see her picture.
But still in China now, I would say more people are recognizing me, but it's very limited.テつ But you know, last year, we have like an end of the year sports festival every year, and I was voted to be the best non‑Olympic sports athlete.テつ So I was the first golfer to be nominated for the event.
So I think the government is paying more attention and people are paying more attention, and if somebody can do well, then maybe in 2016 Olympics, I'm sure golf will be one of the biggest sports in China.

Q.テつ What have you done in the off‑season to improve and try to reach a target for winning two LPGA?
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ You know, last year, I played 32 tournaments overall, and I was really tired after the season.テつ So my options was only less than two months.テつ So I took like a month off, I stayed in China, and didn't really practise.テつ But you know, I needed time to let both my mind and my body be relaxed.
Then I went back to Orlando to my coach's academy.テつ I trained with him for three weeks and mainly it was more like warming up for the season and I think I practiced mostly my putting and my chipping, which are kind of my big parts.テつ I think this year I'm in good shape.
Last week was my first tournament and I had a Top‑10 finish, so I have very good confidence about this year.

Q.テつ Speaking about putting, so many Asian players are in the Top‑10 in the world; and the Americans said maybe it's the short game or putting that sets you apart‑‑ they were joking just now maybe because we are smaller stature, it helps you, because you are closer to the ground, you can see the line better.
KELLY THESIER:テつ Michelle was joking that's why she changed her putting stance was to get a little lower‑‑ (laughter).
SHANSHAN FENG:テつ I don't think that's really one of the reasons.テつ I'm quite big.テつ I'm bigger than, you know, Morgan, and I'm bigger than a lot of the American girls.テつ I wouldn't say size would be the most important thing.
I would think Asians like us, we have really tough mental, and we really work hard.テつ I think maybe that's what makes a lot of difference.テつ I would say in the past ten or 20 years, we have had so many different heros, like Ai from Japan and SeRiPak from Korea, and Yani from Taiwan, which these heros, like they make us see the hope.テつ We see the bright of the future.
So then that's why a lot of us, we start to play, and you know, make our dream to be a pro golfer.
KELLY THESIER:テつ Thank you very much for joining us and best of luck this week.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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