Kingsmill Championship Presented by JTBC

Wednesday May 18, 2016

Ariya Jutanugarn

Press Conference

Q. You talked about this right after your win, but you're the first player from Thailand to ever win on the LPGA Tour. Can you talk about how it felt, that moment when you first won?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually, I mean, before I made the last putt, I'm really nervous, and I think about I really want to be first one to win, but the other thing, I want to win my first tournament this year. And after that, really happy, because it made all the Thai people happy, and especially my mom is really proud of me.

Q. And you won on Mother's Day. Your mom was very emotional about it, wasn't she?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yeah, because she's very tight with me. We travel together, and I have a really hard time last year, and after I win, I mean, this is for her. Actually after I finished 18, she came to me and she said thank you.

Q. Really?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yeah. So I'm supposed to say that to her, but she said thank you to me.

Q. What did your sister say?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: She said she's like really proud of me, and we waited for a long time, and she was just like, congrats. She's the one that really trusted in me any time.

Q. She always trusted you?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Uh-huh.

Q. Do you have bragging rights? Can you say to her, I won on the LPGA Tour now? Does she feel more pressure to win?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Her?

Q. Yeah.
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I don't know. I don't think so. She just does her best. I think one day she's going to win.

Q. Was it hard for you to remain patient and to keep telling yourself it will come, it will come, I just have to be patient?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: It was really hard for me because after ANA, I just really was frustrated because I don't know why I lost in ANA. But it's not only one month, but to me it's like three years, because I lost like on the LPGA like three years, because I kept waiting and telling myself, if this will not work, try something else, so I keep trying and trying, and one day it worked.

Q. Did you change anything between ANA and Prattville?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually a changed a lot because after ANA I just felt like if I keep doing like this, I'm not going to win, because when I get really nervous, I do the same thing, so I just changed my routine, and I changed my practice, so I practice more on my win.

Q. What did you do when you were nervous?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually right now I have like two routines, so when I'm really nervous I just take like a deep breath and do a lot of things, like slowly and normally.

Q. How did the nerves affect you on the course? Were you hitting it left? Were you hitting it right? What happened when you got nervous and you were swinging?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: When I got nervous, I just don't think what I'm going to do. I just get everything in the future and just like don't want my ball to go left, I don't want my ball to go right, but I didn't care what I had to do to make it be good.

Q. You're one of the longest hitters on Tour. Why is that?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Why?

Q. Yeah.
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Because I'm fat. (Laughter.)

No, I don't know.

Q. Have you always been, or is it something that you work on every year?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: To be honest, no. I have a really hard time last year, so I didn't hit my driver, so when I have more confidence when I start to hit it, but I have really a lot of confidence, then I hit it hard.

Q. What's the furthest you've ever hit it?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I don't know, 300 or something.

Q. It's more than that, isn't it? Probably. I want to ask you about, I remember being there at Wegmans the year you got hurt. Looking back, that seems so long ago, right?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Uh-huh.

Q. You were playing so well. You weren't even a member yet, but we thought, oh, here she comes, she's going to win a bunch of times and then you get hurt. How hard was that going through the injury, got the surgery, and then coming back? Looking at the struggles through that whole time, now coming back and winning, how was that process for you?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually this tournament, the last one I played three years ago, so after this I got hurt, it's really hard to me because I stopped golf all eight months, and after that I just have no idea how to play golf. Slowly getting better, so I got to Q-school, so I make it, and last year I just missed like 10 cuts in a row. It's really hard to me. But it just made me stronger, and the only thing is I just tried to find a way to make me play better. But it's fun and a challenge.

Q. Do you remember much about the tournament here three years ago? You had a great first round and a great last round, right?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yes. I think, yep.

Q. Do you remember much about how well you played here, and when you go back and play a practice round, does it come back to you?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually I remember that year, but last year I also have a really bad memory here, too, because I missed my first cut here. To me this year, I just really want to have fun and enjoy every shot because I don't know what's going to happen.

Q. For these guys who have never been over to Thailand when the LPGA goes, give us some perspective of how big of a deal it is for you to get the win. Did you get media requests? Was everyone just going crazy, because they love you guys, our Thai players on Tour?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I actually went to Thailand last week for a few days and I did all the media, like three and four every day, and like 7:00 until like 8:00. Yeah, they're really excited because the first player won on the LPGA. But to me --

Q. Was this in Bangkok?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yeah, Bangkok, but I really trust more and more is going to be coming to win on the LPGA because we have like nine players on the LPGA right now, and all of them are very good players.

Q. Now, International Crown coming up, Olympics coming up. How you're the top-ranked Thai player in the world. I know all you guys are so prideful, wearing the Thai colors. How big is that for you to be the face of Thailand golf across the globe? How big of a deal is that top the top-ranked tie player? Do you take that to heart?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: It's really hard because all the expectations to me because they really want me to be like top, they want me to play good especially in the Olympics because we represent Thailand. It's hard, but I still enjoy it because I always have my target. I want to be better and better.

Q. Now that you're kind of up and you're having success, how important were those struggles to make this more special, to have that win and to go through those hard times? How much better was that win to have struggles before it?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually I feel good because, like, if I don't have -- like three years ago if I don't have surgery, if I don't miss 10 cuts, I'm not going to win the last tournament, so it just made me stronger and stronger.

Q. For the UL International Crown, Team Thailand, you have a lot of talent. You're playing very well especially. Does Team Thailand have a chance to win UL International Crown?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yes. We have the best team on International Crown, so we have champions.

Q. So Team Thailand will win the UL International Crown?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yes, because I have my sister on the team, I have Pornanong, and the fourth one I'm not sure yet, but it will be a good team.

Q. Do you expect to be the leader of the team? Decide pairings?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Actually I don't think so. We based on Pornanong, because she did one and she played on Tour for a long time, and we really respect her.

Q. So she'll tell you you're paired with your sister?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I think she will say that because last time she said the same. She's like, oh, you go with Mo, every day.

Q. And then the Olympics, are you going to the Olympics expecting to medal?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Uh-huh.

Q. You are?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yes.

Q. Any medal?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Any would be good, but gold is the best.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
Rev #1 by #166 at 2016-05-18 16:28:00 GMT

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