April 27, 2021
Republic of Singapore
Sentosa Golf Club
THE MODERATOR: Welcome to the HSBC Women's World Championship.
I am pleased to be joined by Sung Hyun defending champion. How are you doing today?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So it's nice to be back in Singapore again. It still is very hot, so I've been sweating a lot the entire day. The course looks like it's in really good condition and there are -- there have been -- I noticed a couple changes in some of the holes. So it was a good, fun practice round today.
THE MODERATOR: Let's take it back to 2019, especially that final round here at Sentosa. What do you remember most about your win here and that final day 64?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So I remember not losing focus until the end and trying to make a lot of birdies. I didn't know that I was in contention then during the final round, but I was really focused. I know I haven't been playing well the last couple tournaments, but recalling these memories I think gives me a lot of confidence going into this week.
THE MODERATOR: You won here and then went on to win later in June at the Walmart NW Arkansas championship. How much was this event a confidence boost as well as the beginning of a string of great play? How much did it affect your play later that season in 2019?
SUNG HYUN PARK: Yeah, as you mentioned it was a huge confidence boost. I usually don't start very well at the beginning of the season, but winning in Singapore, I think really gave me that confidence boost and I was able to play more comfortably throughout season, which eventually led to a win in Walmart.
So, yeah, I think winning this tournament allowed me to play more comfortably in 2019.
THE MODERATOR: I know you said that the last few tournaments you might not have been playing up to where I think you hoped to be playing. What are some of the things you've been focusing on or wanting to improve after you played the last couple of tournaments and get ready for Singapore?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So that injury that I had at the end of the season in 2019, I had to take a lot of time off because of that, and I think -- and because of my injury, my swing has changed a lot, and I believe that my swing needs to be improved. I think that solid shots lead to good performance. So I'm really trying to find some good shots, both through practice and during tournaments.
THE MODERATOR: Since your injury, have you felt any pain now that you've been recovering from that injury and changing your swing.
SUNG HYUN PARK: No, I think I couldn't swing because of my injury, and I really kind of lost how well I used to swing before. So I'm trying to find that again.
But right now, I'm not feeling any pain on my shoulder.
THE MODERATOR: Well, that's great. No pain is always better than feeling it. What's it like for you mentally trying to overcome the injury and then changing your swing, and what do you do to prepare for tournaments, especially ones where you're defending when you have been overcoming these kind of obstacles?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So after that injury, I took about three months off going into rehabilitation and not playing any tournaments. It was really hard time because I couldn't practice. But I really worked on getting my shoulder better and recovering fully. I think what was really hard during that time was having to watch other players play on TV while I couldn't do anything. But because of that time, I believe I am the player that I am today because of the time I spent recovering and rehabilitating, and I believe that I will improve.
THE MODERATOR: Focusing on the week ahead, have you been able to play out there and what have you thought of Sentosa Golf Club?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So I did start playing here as a rookie, and it's a style of golf course that I really like. It's a lot of fun and I noticed that some holes have been changed on the front nine, and it seems like it's been maintained really well. It seems like it's some really good condition. I personally really like this Sentosa golf course, and as long as I play well, I think I'll be able to score lower this week.
Q. You mentioned that you're working on your swing as you're readjusting to being fully healthy again with your shoulder. Your driving distance has dropped from 275 yards in 2019 on average to 255 this year. Do you anticipate your driving distance getting back to what it was before this injury really impacted your game?
SUNG HYUN PARK: Yes, I do know that my distance has been smaller, but I'm not really focused on driving a longer distance. I think it's just a number, and as long as my swing gets better, I believe that my distance will improve naturally, as well.
Q. I'd like to know, you mentioned earlier that you get a chance to play your practice round. From a player's perspective, do you think that such changes on the golf course will change your strategy at all?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So I only played the front nine today, and I noticed that No. 3 has changed completely. It's playing a lot longer. It's more difficult. The green has also a lot of undulations. So I think I will have to think about how I will play this hole.
Q. Considering your injury back then, do you think that it's kind of a blessing in disguise for you that you are able to come back in Singapore in two years?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So I did win here in 2019 and right now the injury has no effect on me. So I am happy to be back and playing in Singapore this year.
Q. You've got a significant fan base both in Singapore and around the world, certainly in 2019 you had a lot of support out on course. Is there any particular message you'd like to give to your fans here in Singapore?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So I did have a lot of fans come out when I won in 2019, but due to the current circumstances, it's too bad that there won't be any fans around this year. So I would like to say thank you to the Singapore fans this year, and to cheer me on and I will try my best to play well.
THE MODERATOR: This year the theme is game-changers here at the HSBC Women's World Championship. In your opinion, what has been a game-changing moment for you on the LPGA Tour?
SUNG HYUN PARK: So I've been going through a tough time week-by-week, and my confidence is really down, confidence in regards to my golf game. So you mentioned game-changer. I think I want to change myself in a good way, play well, and gain confidence and make this tournament kind of a turning point.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you, Sung Hyun, and thank you everyone else for joining us.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports