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October 3, 2012

Michael Hoey


PAUL SYMES:  Thanks very much for joining us.  A year ago you were sitting at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.  Looking forward to your defence this week?
MICHAEL HOEY:   It's fine, try and play solid.  My last round of golf was a 65 in Italy, so that was kind of nice to try to that take with me.  Started putting well, and swing is always a work‑in‑progress but feel like I'm closer to swinging the club well and hopefully get inspired by the Home of Golf again, which I did last year.
PAUL SYMES:  It was obviously biggest win of your career, not just in terms of your cheque but in terms of quality of field you beat, as well.
MICHAEL HOEY:  Five of the world's top six this year.  Played great in Morocco this year, but to beat those guys here was sort of life changing.  Nice to put in a decent performance.
PAUL SYMES:  I assume like everyone else, glued to your TV screen on on Sunday night?
MICHAEL HOEY:  Yeah, couldn't go to sleep because the adrenaline was going at 1.30 in the morning just try to catch up on sleep since then.
It was unbelievable.  I actually thought we could do when I saw Luke Donald, Poulter, Rose and Rory out early, I thought if they get blue on the board, I thought they were better players than the American guys' top order.  And I thought if they get blue up, they can actually turn it around.
But obviously Mickelson hit a chip shot that was in all the way, just spinned out at the end and Rose holed the putt.  Just fractions‑‑ if that didn't happen, they wouldn't have done it.  It was amazing.  Good for European golf.
PAUL SYMES:  You mentioned your last round in Italy there, obviously that's confidence builder, because in recent weeks you haven't been quite your best.
MICHAEL HOEY:  Struggled in The Open.  Yeah, just have to take the positives and yeah, Italy was good.  So it's all about kind of the putting.  That's what I did last year, just putted really well and I feel my putting stroke is a lot better now.

Q.  Inaudible.
MICHAEL HOEY:  Well, kind of went on holiday before Wentworth and actually went hiking in Switzerland.  I did some serious kind of walking for a few days and then went to the gym and just got a little bit sick actually.  Had a cold and pushed myself too hard.  Should have taken a couple weeks after and shouldn't have gone to Sweden actually.
I went to Sweden and then just took five or six weeks to sort of feel strong after that.  If you don't play well at Wentworth, and you feel like it's sort of getting away from you‑‑ working on the swing a little bit and you're playing in The Open and not swinging the club well, you're going to struggle.
But US PGA, I started swinging the club well, second best round of the day there.  So starting to feel a bit better since then.

Q.  Inaudible.
MICHAEL HOEY:  Yeah, I remember two years ago I was on the range in Carnoustie, I was hitting balls beside Monty and he had just won The Ryder Cup in Wales and he was saying how key that was for The European Tour to try to get sponsors and to help the Tour.  Obviously had a few tournaments since then but lost a couple tournaments, so hopefully this again will really help The European Tour.  But five of the last six wins shows The European Tour players are probably better.

Q.  Inaudible?
MICHAEL HOEY:  I know it's just one tournament that I managed to beat him in, but still, if he can do it once, he can play more golf like that again.  So instead of viewing it as a fluke, obviously backing it up in Morocco, but getting more consistency is what I'm looking for.
Yeah, he's dominating world No. 1, and then obviously Graeme and Louis have done very well this year.  Some good memories.

Q.  Inaudible.
MICHAEL HOEY:  Top‑30, really.  Want to try to be exempt for The Open because qualifying for that is petty tough.  There's only like 12 spots and 90 guys.  That's a tough one.  I don't want to have to qualify for that.  But initially Top 60, I think I'm 64.  Then Top‑30 would be the goal.

Q.  Inaudible.
MICHAEL HOEY:  Just want to be more consistent.  Tournaments like this if you're Top‑10'ing it, you're going to get a lot of ranking points and Race to Dubai points.  I guess there's a difference between smaller tournaments and bigger tournaments here.  There's quite a gulf between the field in a 1 million Euro tournament than a 3.5 million Euro tournament.  You want to kind of be able to play well in the big ones, really.

Q.  Inaudible.
MICHAEL HOEY:  I think play tends to be quite slow, six‑hour rounds.  It's quite cold, so you've got to keep yourself warm and just be patient.  It's like a marathon, you're talking all day, all day long affair at each course.  And I think that if you can take your mind off your own game, if you ask a guy about what he does for a living and it's always generally pretty interesting, because the guys are pretty connected.  So I just find it all interesting.

Q.  (Have you seen any of the team members yet this week)?
MICHAEL HOEY:  Paul Lawrie, I saw in the chipping area. His son was there.  That was awesome, his performance, as well, on Sunday.

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