SPORTS

Started In 1992, Still Going Strong

Vijay Singh competes in his 25th consecutive PGA Championship Every major championship is special for the world’s best professional golfers but the PGA Championship this week will be extra special
29 Jul 2016 11:38
Started In 1992, Still Going Strong
NADI-FIJI – Vijay Singh of Fiji in action on day one of the Fiji International at the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course, Nadi Fiji, Thursday, August 14, 2014 .The US$ 1 million tournament is part of the OneAsia circuit. Picture by Paul Lakatos/OneAsia.

Vijay Singh competes in his 25th consecutive PGA Championship

Every major championship is special for the world’s best professional golfers but the PGA Championship this week will be extra special for Singh.

Singh, a two time PGA Champion, is playing his 25th consecutive PGA Championship, an impressive feat which reflects the Fijian’s long time standing at the peak of the game.

Making his debut at the PGA Championship in 1992, Singh made the cut and finished tied 48th but can be forgiven for not remembering his first tournament given his consistent inclusion in the field for the past 25 years.

“Where was the PGA Championship? I honestly have no recollection of that tournament that year,” said Singh.

“I remember earning Rookie of the Year in 1993 after I won a tournament.”

In 1993 Singh finished outright fourth at the PGA Championship and won his first PGA TOUR event, the Buick Classic.

The PGA Championship that stands out most for Singh was the 1998 edition played at Sahalee Country Club where he emerged victorious.

“Every PGA has had very, very special memories but the one at Sahalee stands out the most because it was my first Major win,” added Singh.

“It was on a golf course that was so tree lined that hitting driver was possible on only one hole all week, that being the 15th. “

“Playing well under those circumstances made it a very special win.”

In 2004 Singh went on to win his second PGA Championship and third major title after he also won the Masters in 2000.

“In 1998, it was my first major and I had no expectations, so I guess it was easier for me to play more freely,” added Singh.

“In 2004, I was playing really well and was having the best year of my career so the expectation was way higher.

“I was more focused on winning and, fortunately, I was able to pull it off.”

Competing in the PGA Championship consecutively for 25 years is an impressive feat and provides Singh with a unique insight into how the tournament has evolved over time.

“It’s an honour to play in another PGA, and as a past winner,” continued Singh.

“The PGA has grown in stature, I guess, as have the other majors. The top players seem to be more focused on the majors these days, now more than ever before.”

Just like all the players in the field, Singh is extremely focused on performing well this week.

“I am happy with my game right now,” said Singh who finished runner-up on the PGA tour last month at the Quicken Loans National.

“I am driving the ball really well and my putting is feeling really good, so my expectations are very, very high this week.”

Singh’s ball striking will hold him in good stead at Baltusrol Country Club, the host venue of the PGA Championship.

The last time the major was played there, Singh finished in the top-10 with the layout demanding accurate driving.

“It’s a very straightforward golf course.  Everything is laid out in front of you,” added Singh.

“The premium at Baltusrol is driving the ball in the fairway.  That I remember very well.”

Singh teed off overnight in his 25th PGA Championship alongside fellow past PGA champs John Daly of America and Padraig Harrington of Ireland.

Source: Fiji International

Feedback: oseab@fijisun.com.fj

 



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