Victor Perez after DP World Championship first round: “The week is still too long”

Victor Perez (69, -3): “Strategy must not change”

“One day in -3, without bogey, we guess you’re pretty happy with this first lap…
The first round of a tournament with a slightly different route from previous years is never obvious. I knew he was going to really separate the player’s court because with the rough and pretty solid greens, we miss the greens as soon as we get a little bumpy and we’re going to quickly make two, three, four, five bogeys. .But if you’re on turf with those flag positions, there’s still plenty to score. It’s not surprising to see Tyrrell (Hatton) at -8 after 17 holes (-7 at the end), so I’m very happy from day one.

Which part of the game did you particularly like?
Iron game was very good. I didn’t miss much greenery so we spent the day pretty quiet. I didn’t drive a lot of fairways but I did shoot greens by shooting through rough terrain, which may not be easy because you can quickly get a flyer (overshoot) or not depending on the residue (where is the ball). You need to have some success in lying. We can read as much as we want, but at times it does not respond well. I was able to hit good areas where I had difficulty. The range shot was very good, I didn’t have to struggle too much with 2 or 3 meter hits for par. So the day went pretty well.

How do you physically deal with the heat on a day like this?
It’s hard to eat on a day like this. The weather is so hot, you have to drink, the electrolyte is clogged. Besides, we set off at a rather strange hour, which we do not like very much. It’s 11 o’clock, we have breakfast, but we don’t have time to eat lunch. So hopefully tomorrow (Friday) will be in the afternoon to make time for lunch. It’s very hot and there isn’t much wind. We hydrate but still pull on the machine on the first day.

After starting at -3, what will be the strategy for the future?
It will depend on the weather. They announced a little more wind than that today, which made the course a little more affordable. I don’t think I will change my strategy. One of my most played courts since joining the Tour, I’ve played this tournament four times, so it’s a twelve-round rivalry. Thus, we begin to have an idea of ​​what we can and cannot do. An advantage for me. The strategy is in my mind a little more than at the beginning without having to think about it too much, which is always interesting. Not having to spend half an hour in the morning at the notebook (your route) thinking based on flag positions. We’ve seen it enough times to be able to play it pretty fluently.

You shot 67 shots on the first day of 2020 and finished 6th in the tournament: Is this kind of round ideal from the start?
It is known from statistics that the first round is very important. This gets you into the tournament, especially on a course that isn’t easy. The moment we get above average and see a direct -9, -10, we are too far away and no longer have the same approach. After playing a very solid game, you do not need to make more attacking moves than necessary. Even if there are 72 holes, the first round is always important. When you make a good shot, not necessarily -8, but with a solid card, you feel the strategy is in place and you can immerse yourself in the game for the rest of the week.

What will the program be at the end of the day?
If we find a cold bath or something to calm the body, it will be a recuperation, trying to eat, cooling off because we have 25% to the tournament and the week is still very long. »

Romain Langasque could have scored better if his shot had matched his driving. (P. Lahalle/Team)

Romain Langasque (71, -1): “My best time of the year”

Starting in the early morning in the second division, the French delivered a first card under (-1), which completely satisfied him for the road rather than the score.

Romain Langasque: “I drove very well from A to Z, got a lot of green and made a few mistakes. I felt very good throughout the course. Honestly, that’s the best part of the year. And the big plus point was the driving. Playing below par is always positive. , but I also remember the form where there were a lot of opportunities that didn’t necessarily drop even if I wasn’t that close (the flags). I’ve used my luck ever since.

I got into the game right away. I started at 5m on 1, 3m for birdie on 2 and 3, green on 4 and 1m for birdie on 5. I felt like my game was on point. There were quite a few flags at the bottom of the greens near the edges, making the course a little longer. So it was more difficult to approach the flags but I think any score below equal would be a good score. Then a few more birds will be needed over the next few days to hope to make it to the top of the leaderboard.

Given the challenges, they might want the tournament not to be won at -20 this year. It’s in the soul, they’ll be pinning flags all week. surprised? No, we are in the finale of the Dubai Race, there are the best in the world, so we need a suitable route.

I’m going to eat there and put some in because I struggled a bit with the speed (of the greens). Then I will go home to rest because the weather is very hot and there are three more laps. I talked to Makis (his mental trainer Chamalidis) about this, the goal is to always be there, eat well throughout the course and make my routines as good as possible. This course can be challenging if you start hitting the ball less well. I am ready, I am aware of that.

I prefer to start late, which will be a good sign, but I think it is more advantageous to start early today. The greens are a little softer and this one plays. If I can play later on Sunday at 12:30…”

Antoine Rozner hasn't always been rewarded with good shots.  (S. Boué/Team)

Antoine Rozner hasn’t always been rewarded with good shots. (S. Boué/Team)

Antoine Rozner (72, par): “Could have done better”

After a nice run to -2, the Parisian lost a bit of the rope and finished on par with a taste of unfinished business despite a few things. “very good golf shots”.

Antoine Rozner: “I had a pretty solid start in terms of content, now I’m a little disappointed with the outcome because it deserved a little better. It didn’t work, especially where I had a lot of very good golf swings on the way back. I would have hoped for a little better, now there are four laps, it’s pretty long, so I’m hoping to grab a few rows by Sunday. Emotionally it wasn’t bad really, two days ago I found something that tells me a bit.

I may not have used a lot of fairways, that’s probably where it’s played today. Because we know we can get into trouble with these super-thick roughs. If I manage to get through a little more grassy roads, I think I can be more aggressive with the second shots and try to throw some more birds. It didn’t take much of a breath, but it’s still a pretty tough track, it’s very difficult to make a bird, you have to be able to get close. It is not an easy course, but we see that there are quite low scores to do better. Although I had a few difficult moments, I did not lose my focus too much, you need to stay serious and determined.

There is a good score to get, you have to play hard for four days, that’s the most important thing. I had a good day even though I had hoped for better, so the contract was pretty full overall. »

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