Team Spain

European Tour: Sergio Garcia Revisits 2017 Omega Dubai Desert Classic Victory and Previews 2020 Edition

European and PGA Tour professional Sergio Garcia speaks with the media prior to the start of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic about his 2017 victory in Dubai and also speaks about his recent change in equipment and age being a factor or not on Tour.

European and PGA Tour professional Sergio Garcia speaks with the media prior to the start of the Omega Dubai Desert Classic about his 2017 victory in Dubai and also speaks about his recent change in equipment and age being a factor or not on Tour.

European Tour: Sergio Garcia speaks with the media ahead of opening round of Dubai Desert Classic

BRIONY CARLYON: Delighted to be joined by Sergio Garcia back at the OMEGA Dubai Desert Classic.


BRIONY CARLYON: Sergio, a past winner here. You obviously must have fond memories of playing in Dubai.

SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, definitely. Obviously it’s 2017, great year, and it all started here. Excited to be back.

Course is playing a little bit different than we’ve seen it in the past. Rough is a lot thicker. Greens are probably as firm as I’ve seen them on a Tuesday and Wednesday. It’s going to be — I think it’s going to be a strong challenge with a little bit of wind predicted for at least Thursday and Sunday. So it should be a nice test of golf for us.

BRIONY CARLYON: We know you’ve had a milestone birthday recently, but tied 8th last week in Abu Dhabi. Game is feeling in great shape to start 2020, a new decade?

SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, it was definitely a good week to start with. I would love to have played a tiny bit better on the weekend and have a little bit better chance at winning. Overall, it was consistent. You know, four rounds under par, and so that’s always a positive. You know, to start with a Top-10, it’s always a nice thing.

We’ll try to keep building on that, have another good week here, and go on to Saudi and hopefully have another one, another good one there and then head to the States.

Q. You were trying out some PING clubs I think last week. How did that work out for you? How did you feel with the clubs that you had in the bag last week?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I wasn’t trying them last week; I’ve tried them before last week.

Yeah, it was the first tournament with them. They felt good. They felt nice. They felt nice when I was doing the testing and when I was practicing back at home.

So you know, I’m pretty happy with them. I’m excited about the equipment that I have in my hands, and you know, hopefully I can build on some good confidence, and that’s pretty much, you know, what I have to do now, just keep on building good confidence, have some good thoughts out there, commit to what I want to do as much as possible and hopefully we’ll have a lot of good weeks this year.

Q. Lee winning last week, and you’ve been on the tour now for almost two decades now, what is it that keeps you guys going? When you look across on the other side of the Atlantic, there’s a whole bunch of young stars. What is it like people that you can push yourself and keep going year after year?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, first of all we believe in ourselves. We believe that we’re good enough. I feel like we show it pretty much week-in, week-out. Like you said, it gets tougher every year because there’s a lot of good youngsters coming out both in Europe and on the PGA Tour.

But you know, we can still go out there and perform well. So we are competitors and we love to compete and challenge ourselves, and that’s what we try to do.

Q. Do you still get the same sense of excitement and drive and motivation coming out in a new season as you did all those years ago? Does it still feel the same?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, for sure. Without a doubt. You get a little bit nervous here and there, which is great, and you feel it. Those are the things why you put the hours in and you work for and try to get better every time.

We know it’s not easy as you keep adding on numbers to your ID, but we go out there and we practice hard and we try to stay fit and play the best we can.

Q. I read you got the second-longest streak in the world’s Top-100 going, over 20 years now. How proud are you now of that sort of longevity, and how much weight do you put on your World Ranking? Does it motivate you to go higher?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, anyone about it. A friend of mine sent it to me a couple of weeks ago. It is nice to be able to do that. I think that fortunately for me, I have two or three nice streak going on with majors in a row played and what you were saying with World Rankings and Ryder Cup record and all those things.

It is really nice to be able to kind of make a little bit of history here there and. So I think that you know, it’s not the ultimate goal, but that’s kind of what we work for because that shows you the ability that we have, and what we can achieve. The goal is to keep adding on to that, keep playing well and keep myself on that streak obviously.

I think that, yeah, I love to have a really good start to the year and get my World Ranking back to at least Top-20 in the world, which is a bit more comfortable than where I am now. Hopefully we’ll be able to do that fairly soon.

Q. How often do you think about the win here — because until then, you were always the guy who didn’t quite win a major and didn’t close the deal. But since then, are the memories in the back of your mind?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, without a doubt, I’m not going to lie to you, it does pop up in my head. You know, it’s my biggest individual win of my career, so obviously it is going to pop up here and there. It’s fun to remember it. It’s great to be a part of it, and you know, the only thing I can do is keep working to add on to that memory. That’s the goal and that’s what I’m going to try to do.

It’s not easy, but it’s obviously possible and that’s what I’m driving to.

Q. That’s one major you can keep going back and keep playing regardless, however old you are, you can go and play. How much does that excite you knowing that you’ll always be there?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, it’s good fun. It’s obviously something amazing and it’s something that you don’t have to worry about anymore. It’s a fun week. It’s exciting, not only for myself, but for family and friends when they come, and everyone that’s watching and all the Patrons and everything. It’s always a really amazing feeling to know that you are going to be there. Obviously regardless of health issues or anything else going on, you’re going to be there playing that amazing championship and that amazing golf course.

Q. Someone whose a fan of this golf course, I know it’s setup slightly differently this week, but talk about what make this is a great golf course and what in your opinion in general terms is the key to doing well here?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, it’s a kind of golf course that I enjoy because targets are small, fairways are narrow, greens are fairly small on average. You know, if your game is on, you feel like you’re giving yourself a lot of birdie chances every time. It’s not like you have a lot of, you know, 50- or 60-footers like on some of the courses you might do.

So you know, usually is in great shape, just like this year. So set for a good championship.

BRIONY CARLYON: All the best for this week, thank you.

January 21, 2020

Dubai, UAE

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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