Yang believes Masters tournament is "winnable"

Asia's history-maker Y.E. Yang believes he has the game to win the Masters this week as he seeks to land a second major victory.

  • Published: 10/04/2013 at 01:49 AM
  • Newspaper section: news

Y.E. Yang of Korea hits a shot out of the bunker during a practice round prior to the start of the 2013 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 8, 2013 in Augusta, Georgia. Asia's history-maker Yang believes he has the game to win the Masters this week as he seeks to land a second major victory.

The Korean star, who became the first Asian male golfer to win a major title when he beat Tiger Woods in a head-to-head duel at the 2009 PGA Championship, has flown under the radar in recent times following a quiet spell of form.

But the Asian Tour player insists that the Masters is "winnable" as he prepares to take his place alongside the world's elite at Augusta National Golf Club starting on Thursday.

"It is certainly winnable. Apart from the other three majors, Augusta National does not have tough rough and it is not as long as the other majors," said Yang, 41.

"I have come up on the leaderboard at the Masters a few times previously. I have confidence going into the majors but with Augusta National, it's different. You play the same course every year and you have a feel of the whole layout and tournament.

"If you can get used to the green speed which is horrendous for the players, I feel it's the better major for the Asians to excel. It's not too long but overall, it's fairly straight forward. If you can get used to the green speed, it's really anybody's game."

Yang's best showing at the Masters was a tied eighth finish in the 2010 edition. He followed that up with a top-20 in 2011 and shared 57th last year. The powerful Korean also finished equal third in the US Open in 2011.

"I don't know how many more Masters I'll play in, but with my strength and ability, I'm going to try to go for another win and hopefully it will be the Masters which will be my second major," he said.

Yang has not won on the PGA Tour since his life-changing victory four years ago but three top-20s in recent times, including at the Asian Tour's inaugural Chiangmai Golf Classic, have boosted his confidence.

"It's definitely better than last year. It can only go up and it's a gradual improvement for me. It's not great but at the same time, it's not too terrible but I'm going in the right direction," he said.

"Last year was more psychological than physical. Technique wise, swing wise and form wise, it wasn't that bad. I just put too much pressure on myself. The winless run added a lot pressure on me at every tournament

"This year, I'm more relaxed mentally and physically. It's translated to a better start than last year."

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Writer: AFP
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