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Third round interviews from the Mission Hills World Ladies Championship
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Inbee Park

Comments from the third round leader Inbee Park of South Korea and second placed Suzann Pettersen of Norway.

Inbee Park

 

How was your game today?

INBEE PARK: I had a really bad start today, I bogeyed two of the first four holes but I’m happy with the way I finished today with five birdies after the two bogies. That’s very good momentum going into tomorrow. I’m just a little bit disappointed with my ball striking; it wasn’t as good as yesterday but my putting was getting much better.

Tell about the bogies:

INBEE PARK: Yeah – my tee-shot went into the bunker and I thought it wasn’t low enough to get my rescue onto. I hit it really solid but it just hit the lip and just didn’t go very far so yeah – that was just a mistake.

How was the playing partnership with Ciganda?

INBEE PARK: It was my first time playing with Ciganda – I played with Suzann the last three days so I was really used to seeing her and obviously we’ve got tomorrow too so it was fun. The weather out there was very nice and nothing was really going wrong.

What do you want for tomorrow?

INBEE PARK: I think we’re doing very good in both the Individual as well as the Team event. We’re in a very good position and a better position than anybody else in the field so I think I’ll take that advantage and tomorrow I’ll just go out there like the last three days. The same strategy, I struck the ball really well and be positive on the greens.

Is it the first time you’ve played with Suzann all four days?

INBEE PARK: I’ve played with her a couple of times in the final round but I don’t think I’ve ever played with her all four days in a row. We’ve played three rounds together and we’re both playing very good golf; we’re inspiring each other because we’re getting a lot of birdies and I think that’s been helpful for each other. I played with her in Taiwan last year in the final round I was leading by 2 going into the last round and she played very good on the last day so unfortunately I finished second and she finished first so maybe I’ll take this opportunity to make it a bit different from the last scenario.

What did you learn from the Taiwan experience?

INBEE PARK: If someone’s played really well you really can’t do anything about it because it’s somebody else’s game that you can’t control. I shot an even-par so it wasn’t really a bad score but Suzann shot five or 6 under the last day so that’s something I can’t control and hopefully tomorrow’s going to be my day.

What sort of player do you consider yourself?

INBEE PARK: I don’t know but I always try to think you know not to play conservative but to play really aggressive even if going into the last day so that’s what I’m wanting to do  but I don’t know how people see me.

What part of the game do you feel you have the edge over the field?

INBEE PARK: I think my putting is the strongest part of my game and that’s what everyone says. I don’t think I’m like the best putter.

How do you evaluate the young Korean players eg. Kim Hyo-Joo?

INBEE PARK: Not just her, there are a lot of young Korean woman golfers playing a very good golf. I am very surprise every day because there’s this one at this time, maybe a month later there’s another one coming in. It’s in a quickly changes. The younger girls are playing better and better. These young Korean golfers are inspired by all Korean golfers and they are improving.

 

You are at 24 years old now and how do you manage yourself and your life while living in the states?

INBEE PARK: I went to America when I was 12 years old. I spend a lot of time in America with my elder sister and my mum. It was easier to get used to America because I have my family with me. I love travelling and I love playing golf. You know, doing something that you love is always fun and I am trying to enjoy myself every week, not just playing golf but trying to enjoy my life here and there.

 

Carlota Ciganda had a triple bogey at Hole 17 today and I couldn’t help but think of the game you played in Thailand three weeks ago that Ariya (Jutanugarn) also had a triple bogey that let you to lead the game onwards. How did you feel about this?

INBEE PARK: She was really in the mix until hole 17 today. She had a challenge on the putt. This shouldn’t be that bad but ended up bad, that’s really unlucky. But I think she has a probability to come back tomorrow. She’s okay I think.

 

Last year we had the World Ladies Championship for 3 days but this year we have that in 4 days. How do you like the changes? Also, there is a different format with team (playing on behalf of your country) and individual play format. Do you like it to representing your country as well as representing yourself?

INBEE PARK: I would prefer 3 days. It would make easier for me (laugh). I think it is really fun format because we are playing individual and team together at the same time. This is a very good experience for us. About the three rounds and four rounds, normally the golf tournaments are with four rounds, but I think three rounds is a lot easier for the players, both physically and mentally, so it would be easier for us. But all the big events are in four rounds, so I think the final day is very important.

 

You will be crowned today if it is a three rounds game…

Sometimes I will come from the back so it’s not really true.

 

CLPGA just announced that they has been included into the Rolex World Rankings points, that means you can get points from participating into CLPGA events. Because of your skills, you may have a better chance to win in China. Will you consider playing more in China in the future?

INBEE PARK: I think if I get the opportunity on the tournament I will play because I like the place, the food and the people here. Its’ good to see golf in China is getting bigger and bigger. For the population of China, most of people are not very familiar with golf. I think it will have a good future of golf getting bigger here.

 

Suzann Pettersen

Suzann Pettersen during her third round in the World Ladies Championship at Mission Hills Resort Haikou

You played a normal round for you and you mentioned you found the greens slow yesterday. How do you find them today?

I’m not sure what they did because they were ten times harder and a lot firmer, so I don’t know what happened overnight. It seems like they’ve cut them and I don’t know, rolled them, sanded them. The greens are a little inconsistent in speed. I played decent golf today but a bit disappointing not finishing stronger on the last hole, but it’s okay.

What do you think about the pin locations?

I think the course is set up very good. I think its great that they put up short par fours, it’s more exciting for the crowds, it’s more exciting for the scoreboard and the wind is pretty much what protects this course, so it’s a good course!

You are two strokes behind Inbee Park so are you full of confidence going into the last day?

For sure. I have a lot of faith in my game, I’m playing good golf and excited that I have one more round.

 

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