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January 24, 2019

Sergio Garcia

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Q. A terrific opening round of 66; tell us about that one from your point of view.
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I think I went from -- how do you say it? From less to more. Like I got better as the round went on. I started hitting the ball very nicely on the back nine for sure. I hit some good shots on the front, don't get me wrong, but I played really, really well on the back nine. You know, just a couple of putts here and there would have been nice to make, but overall, I think it was a nice opening round.

Q. Some changes to the equipment in your bag; tell us about those and how you're getting on with it.
SERGIO GARCIA: No, great. I mean, very happy with obviously new woods, the new Epic Flash from Callaway and the new ball, the combination, I'm really, really liking it. I feel like my ball flight, it's a little bit stronger into the wind than it used to be, and I'm hitting it quite well. It's been really nice so far.

Q. Last year you were saying I really need a break, you were tired, you played a lot of golf towards the end of the year. How energised are you now having played in Singapore and finished seventh there and now you're off to playing here?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, no, I'm excited. I'm excited about it. Obviously it's a new year, and I'm excited to do some good things. I think that obviously I've started fairly well. Felt pretty good last week other than a couple little moments here and there. But you know, it's normal, it's the beginning of the year. Still a little bit rusty. But today was a nice solid round, and we're just going to keep it going.

Q. 6-under 66, you must be thrilled with how you started.
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, definitely. It was a nice round. Obviously there's always a couple putts here and there that could have gone in that didn't, but overall I felt like I played really well. I felt like I played better as the round went on, and back nine was very solid. So very happy with that, and excited to keep it going.

Q. Your iron play, your approach play, your bread and butter stayed with you through the day?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, like I said, I felt like I played better as the round went on. I felt like the back nine I hit a lot of good iron shots, and because of that, I was able to score a little bit better. On the front I hit some good shots, but I didn't hit it quite as close to the flag as I would have liked to, but other than that, it was good.

Q. You're of course a part of team Callaway, a partner of the European Tour. It's about this time of the year where players are having to adapt to new equipment. How have you found the change and how are you doing with that?
SERGIO GARCIA: No, it's great. Obviously I got my new woods, my new Epic Flash and my new ChromeSoft X ball at the beginning of the year and practised with it for a couple of weeks before I went to Singapore. Felt very comfortable from the get-go, so that's always a positive, and it's felt good so far.

Q. And it was quite cold this morning, but it looked like the greens were at times some of the trickiest times for the players. How did you find the reads?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, no, the greens are beautiful. I think they're probably the firmest that I've seen them around here for sure, but the course is in great shape. The greens are in beautiful condition, and I guess with good weather like we had today, you're going to get good rounds like it happened.

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