Precedent played a big part in YE Yang beating Tiger Woods to claim the PGA Championship last week, according to the South Korean golfer. Yang had overcome Woods's challenge at the 2007 HSBC Champions, the memory of which helped him become the first Asian golfer to win a major championship. Yang will meet the world's top-ranked player again at this year's HSBC Champions in November, along with defending champion Sergio Garcia of Spain and world No 2 Phil Mickelson.
The 2007 win "set the foundation for bigger things to come", Yang said in a statement yesterday. "It gave me the courage to achieve bigger goals, like coming to play on the PGA tour and of course winning the PGA Championship. "In the bigger picture, it definitely changed my career because it gave me the strength that I needed and the confidence and belief I could achieve bigger things," he said. Yang won the 2007 tournament by two strokes over Woods.
He topped that achievement at the PGA Championship, beating Woods by three strokes. The November 5 to 8 HSBC Champions at Shanghai's Sheshan International Golf Club was upgraded this year to Asia's first World Golf Championship event. Others competing for the US$7 million (Dh25.7m) tournament include Englishman Paul Casey - who did not play in the PGA Championship due to injury - Sweden's Henrik Stenson, American Stewart Cink and Padraig Harrington of Ireland.
Meanwhile, Yang also qualified for the PGA Grand Slam of Golf, to be played at Bermuda's Port Royal Golf Course on October 20-21. * With agencies