Padraig acknowledges the crowd on day two of the 2013 Thailand Open (AFP) in Bangkok.
My trip to Bangkok did not end up as I would have liked. I went there looking to win the Thailand Open, so to finish down in the middle of the pack was disappointing. It was just one round that killed off my chances in the tournament, but unfortunately, on this type of course, when everyone is making a lot of birdies one poor score drops you well down the leaderboard.
I got off to a reasonable start by shooting five under par in round one, which was a decent score but I finished poorly, dropping two shots on the 17th. So even though it was solid start I was disappointed with it. On Friday morning I went out and shot six under par for a two round total of eleven under which left me two shots behind the leader. On Saturday I was in the second to last group, but everyone knew going out that you needed to shoot a low score to be in with a shout on Sunday. However, I ended up shooting three over par which, on this course and in the weather conditions, was a terrible score. I got off to bad start by three putting the first from fifteen feet, then I parred the next and bogeyed the third - both of which are holes that you are looking to birdie - and I only made one birdie in my round, on the 16th, which was a very poor performance. It was just a bad day - I couldn't say that I did anything terrible but in the end it all added up to three over par and I got badly punished for a few bad shots and never holed a putt.
My third round knocked me out of any chance of a good finish, but at least my final round was a lot better in terms of the score - I shot six under par with two bogeys - but the funny thing was that I didn't play massively different to Saturday. It was nice to finish with a good round and not have my bad round on Sunday, so having shot six under I can take a lot of good things from it into my next event.
Looking back on my poor day on Saturday I have to put it down to fatigue. Having arrived in Tuesday morning and playing that afternoon, I never got a chance to fully rest and then with the heat it all built up and I eventually hit the wall on Saturday. The funny thing about the week is that the best I played all week was on the Tuesday afternoon in the pro-am after flying for nearly 20 hours. Maybe I need to factor this into my warm ups!
It was a disappointing week on the course but other than that it was very enjoyable. I would love to have added the Thailand Open to my title but it was not to be.
This week I am in Bangkok for the Thailand Open. I left Miami on Sunday night and arrived here on Tuesday morning. What on paper looked like it could be a tough trip was actually quite easy - I flew back through Heathrow and then onto Bangkok, but managed to get a good bit of sleep which was nice.
I have always enjoyed playing in Asia and have had a reasonable amount of success out here so when the opportunity arose for me to come back to Thailand I was delighted.
I arrived early on Tuesday morning and played in the afternoon pro-am. Thankfully it wasn't too hot on Tuesday as it would have been hard to acclimatise to the heat and humidity straight away. Along with this, the another surprise was that the pro-am was played in carts, which made all the difference on the back nine as I was fading from the jetlag. It was my first look at the course and my initial thoughts were that the scoring could be very good as there were several short par fours and the par fives were reachable. However when I played again on Wednesday I noticed the trouble on the course and realised that the holes were not as easy as I originally thought. I played nine holes with Paul McGinley on Wednesday and it was great to catch up with him. Needless to say we spent quite a bit of time discussing the Ryder Cup.
As I lost a day in travelling I haven't been able to do as much preparation as I would normally would when I come to a new venue. However that may not be a bad thing as I need to take it easy and cut back a bit. On Wednesday I played eleven holes and spent quite a bit of time chipping and putting around the greens. I always prefer to do my practice on the course whenever possible, as you get so much more out of it. I am very happy with the state of my long game but I would like to have another day to do some work on my chipping. This part of my game let me down last week in Miami, so I have spent as much time as I could on it so far and will make sure to get some further practice in during the week.
The course, while it is not long it has enough trouble on it to make it tricky. You can make lots of birdies if things are going your way but as easy as you can make a birdie there is a bogey or worse lurking too. The rough is patchy which means that you can get away with a loose shot but also you can get a really bad lie. As with every course if you keep it on the fairway then you don't have to worry about it.
I am looking forward to playing - I came here looking to win the Thailand Open and I will be giving it my all. I would love to add the Thai Open to my titles, but to do this I know that I have to stay patient and ensure that I am in contention come Sunday afternoon and then take my chances from there.