An interview with:
SCOTT CROCKETT: Ladies and gentlemen, Anders, many, many congratulations. You said yesterday, perhaps understandably, you didn't want to speak about what this win would mean to you. Perhaps you can kick us off, telling us what it does now that it's a reality.
ANDERS HANSEN: First of all, to sit here today as a winner of this tournament is beyond my wildest fantasy. I never thought -- I don't know if I never thought I could win this tournament. But winning this tournament, that's the first tournament, is unbelievable. What this means to me, it is a good question. I think I will find out over the next few days or few weeks. I am probably going to go home tomorrow morning, and I don't know, try to get back down to earth.
SCOTT CROCKETT: You never thought you could have done as good as it panned out in your mind?
ANDERS HANSEN: This is -- I mean, I couldn't imagine it would go any better today than it did. I felt absolutely horrible out there. It was the hardest 18 holes I have ever played in my entire life. I felt stomach cramps. It was -- but dealing with the pressure yesterday helped me come through today, and it was great. It was great.
Q. Cramps caused by nerves?
ANDERS HANSEN: By nerves, yeah. I was very nervous.
Q. How else did those nerves manifest themselves? You had a cigarette occasionally and everything else, didn't you?
ANDERS HANSEN: I had some water. (Laughter). Don't know what you are talking about.
Q. You didn't sleep too well last night, you said?
ANDERS HANSEN: I slept all right. I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn't go back to sleep. Then I woke up early this morning and couldn't go back to sleep. And it's just been a tough night.
Q. Is that because of nightmares?
ANDERS HANSEN: No nightmares, no. No.
Q. Did you just lie there or turn the telly and watch something?
ANDERS HANSEN: No, I was just churning in the bed.
Q. Were you thinking about winning the tournament or thinking of possibly not winning the tournament?
ANDERS HANSEN: I was thinking of winning the tournament. I had wanted it so bad. I was five shots clear of Rodiles. I think the next one was 10 under. So it is a very good lead going into the last round, and I think today I would have been very, very disappointed had I not pulled it off.
Q. Thomas Bjorn was there to meet you on the 18th. Was that very special for you?
ANDERS HANSEN: Yeah, it was very nice of him to take his time and come down and congratulate me and just talk me through things. It was very, very nice. Nice gesture of him.
Q. Were you due to play at Woburn this week?
ANDERS HANSEN: Yes, I was.
Q. You are not, then?
ANDERS HANSEN: No. Sorry.
Q. Why not?
ANDERS HANSEN: Emotional reasons.
Q. Who is most famous today in sport in your country?
ANDERS HANSEN: Who is the most famous player?
ANDERS HANSEN: That will be Michael Laudrup, definitely.
Q. What about the badminton players?
ANDERS HANSEN: Some good badminton players but not as well known as the players -- Michael Laudrup, and the things he stands for in football in Denmark and things for Danes who believe to be good footballers as well, he stands very, very good.
Q. Why were you such a late bloomer, if I can put it that way? Thomas said he felt that you probably could have had the talent to win earlier and just didn't.
ANDERS HANSEN: I just didn't do it, no. That's a good question, isn't it? (Laughs).
No, you know, I don't know. Maybe I should call my mom and dad and ask them. (Laughs). Maybe I was a little slow coming out.
Q. Was it because you went to university in the States before you --
ANDERS HANSEN: Well, I think if I had turned pro before going to the States, I am not quite sure I would have made it. Going to America and college really helped me find out what it is like playing golf, I mean, all year-round. I didn't -- back in Denmark you only play seven months; during the winter you do nothing.
Q. How well will this be received back in Denmark, your win?
ANDERS HANSEN: I reckon pretty good.
ANDERS HANSEN: Yeah. I hope so. No, it will be -- I reckon it will be very well recognized, and we'll see.
Q. Do you hope that it will, you know, impress upon the youngsters that this is a game --
ANDERS HANSEN: What I do really hope is that the youngsters in Denmark, now they have seen Thomas do it and they start asking questions, is he the only one that can do it. But apparently Steen won two years ago in Wales, I won this year and this is the premier event. I mean, it's possible for Danes to win big tournaments. And all the youngsters around in Denmark, they -- probably a lot of them watched it on TV or they are going to hear about it, and you know, I go around play golf in Denmark and I play with them, and they can see what it is like. It doesn't, you know, it takes a lot, but it's possible. It's definitely possible. If you open doors, you know, we open doors all the time. I would reckon this win will open a few doors for Danish golfers.
Q. Are you a big soccer fan?
ANDERS HANSEN: Yeah.
Q. How do you think they will do?
ANDERS HANSEN: I think they are going to go through to the -- what is it -- out of the group stages and then they are probably going to lose out. I think they going up against the England, Argentinian group, they are probably going to have trouble. I hope they are going to play England. That will be great fun. I am not going to tell you who I am rooting for.
Q. Do you know roughly how many golfers there are in Denmark?
ANDERS HANSEN: 130,000.
Q. Another 20,000 on the waiting list?
ANDERS HANSEN: What is it about 130 clubs?
Q. Yes. Population of ?
ANDERS HANSEN: 5 million.
Q. What did you find out about yourself today?
ANDERS HANSEN: That I can handle myself under the pressure and I have got -- now I have more confidence in myself and I now believe it's possible to do it out here.
Q. From here?
ANDERS HANSEN: From here on I have to go home tomorrow and sit down and think about it. This is unbelievable. This is just unbelievable.
Q. It's changed your life obviously?
ANDERS HANSEN: I don't know if it's changed my life. I am still the same person as I was yesterday and as I was two weeks ago. I am not going to change. Obviously this means that -- I think I get a little bit of exemption into this, five-year exemption which is quite nice.
Q. On the Tour.
ANDERS HANSEN: On this Tour, and probably have a few Quid in the bank account as well which is quite nice. Besides that, it's not really going to change a whole lot other than I know that I can play out here for the next five years which is great and hopefully I can go on and win more tournaments.
Q. That does change your professional life?
ANDERS HANSEN: It does change my professional life, you are absolutely right. But I will still try to keep doing what I am doing since it is obviously working. I will, yeah, still work hard on my game, and still try to keep going.
Q. Andrew Oldcorn won last year unexpectedly, seemed to find the pressure, the demands on him a little difficult afterwards...
ANDERS HANSEN: He did?
Q. Yes. I wonder if that will --
ANDERS HANSEN: I have no idea. I don't know what is -- you ask what is this going to mean to me. I don't know. I don't know what is going to happen tomorrow when I get back to Denmark. I know for one thing I am probably going to have a little party. And I am probably going to celebrate a little bit. Have a little time off. Spend some time with my son, and then get ready to come back out.
Q. Next tournament?
ANDERS HANSEN: It's probably going to be New Castle.
Q. I think jokingly you said you were going to go home and watch the Eurovision Song Contest?
ANDERS HANSEN: Oh! Did you have to ask that question?
ANDERS HANSEN: I watched it last night. I was thinking I hope they didn't hear that. Yeah, we did finish No. 1 from behind, so you got it. But today we finished No. 1 from the front, which is quite nice.
Q. How much time do you still spend in America?
ANDERS HANSEN: Don't spend any time there, no. I don't go over there, no.
Q. You might start going to things like -- not this year but --
ANDERS HANSEN: I am very, very pleased in Europe. I love the European Tour. I think the European Tour does so many good things for the players, and it's a great Tour, so it's no plans as of now to leave here.
Q. Do you watch the Song Contest?
ANDERS HANSEN: Yes, I did.
Q. Do you believe you were last?
ANDERS HANSEN: We did finish last.
Q. That inspired you, didn't it?
ANDERS HANSEN: That inspired me to go out and win today. You don't have to ask those questions. You just have to get me down, don't you?
SCOTT CROCKETT: Any more questions, preferably about golf? (Laughter) Well done, Anders. Thank you very much.
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