Hard work pays off for jubilant Jacquelin | other | Hindustan Times
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Hard work pays off for jubilant Jacquelin

other Updated: Apr 22, 2007 15:51 IST

Reuters
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Raphael Jacquelin credited good old fashioned hard work for the hot April streak which culminated in his second European Tour title at the Asian Open on Sunday.

The Frenchman has been in contention at all three tournaments this month, finishing second in Portugal and leading for two rounds at last week's China Open, but said there had been no great secret to his improved form.

"Just work and patience and 10 years on the tour," the 32-year-old told reporters. "When you work, it pays. It takes time but this week it worked from Thursday to Sunday.

"When I have the feeling right I hit the ball well and I have been improving on the putting. Just keep working like this and maybe some more tournaments will come.

"It is a fantastic moment ... it is my second win so it is not a surprise anymore."

Jacquelin, who wanted to be a footballer until a knee injury at the age of 13 forced him to switch to golf, won the French junior title in 1993 and turned professional two years later.

It took him 10 years as a professional to get his first European Tour win at the 2005 Madrid Open -- which he also led from start to finish -- and the world number 104 was not getting carried away with his second.

"This year, my ambition was to play most of the majors so maybe it will help me play the (U.S. Open) and maybe the British Open as well," he said. "Play the majors and try to get some points for the world rankings.

"I've been trying for about five years to get into the top 50 in the world to get to play whenever you want, especially the world events and the majors. The plan is exactly the same.

"The Ryder Cup is a dream but if keep playing like this I will have my chance to play in the Ryder Cup but it's too early to speak about it."

Jacquelin was sopping wet as he collected his trophy and not just because of the torrential rain, his fellow French players having continued the tradition of giving a champagne shower to any winner from their ranks.

"I hope there's going to be more French players win on tour this year then I can bring the bottle of champagne," he said.

Last year's Asian Open champion Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano said he would propose to his girlfriend after winning at the
Tomson Golf Club, an option not open to Jacquelin.

"I'm married already," he joked. "We're going to celebrate expecting our second kid in December, it's the biggest thing that happens to a man in his life."

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