Matteo Manassero’s been in Asia, the Middle East, off to the States, then to Europe and now back in Asia all since January.
I caught up with him this week at the Maybank Malaysian Open where he had arrived on Monday to really taken in playing back on the slower greens.
I first asked Matteo what were his recollections of playing in his first Royal Trophy?
‘It was amazing. Nobody expected us to win and we as a team were on a high and felt we could win. Everything went right from the beginning actually, and we were up after three holes right to the end. It was fantastic really!’
That was Matteo’s first time in Thailand and he told me he really enjoyed the trip.
‘I enjoyed staying in Hua Hin and I liked Thailand. Everyone there does not have any problems, and you don’t see anger in Thailand. Everyone is smiling and that’s what makes Thailand such a great place.’
I then asked him what he thought about playing at Black Mountain.
‘I think it is a good course. It was fantastic. It was always in good condition and is a well shaped course and the greens are pure. The shape of a course is what makes a great course. It’s quite a long course but I enjoyed that week. The par 3 hole 11 is fantastic with the lake and it is one of the tough holes there. I know Johan Edfors and a few of the other guys actual practice there in the winter and it is definitely a good idea.’
Compared with us weekend golfers and even the Asian Tour players, you guys at the Royal Trophy were getting onto the greens on a few of the par 4’s.
‘Yes we were able to get close with the following wind, so it was worth the go,’ he told me.
Finally I asked him if he plans to keep Asia on his schedule in the future.
‘Yes definitely. I am a great fan of a worldwide tour, as you want to play in Europe, the States, the Middle East and here in Asia. If there is a chance of playing a Worldwide Tour that would be good. It is just a great experience.’
He’s currently ranked 57 in the World and with a good showing in KL where he lead the first round Matteo could be soon in the top 50 at the age of 17 years old.