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Victor Perez ready to go to 'the edge' in Texas

Victor Perez ready to go to 'the edge' in Texas

Victor Perez believes this week's WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play can push him "to the edge" as the Hero Cup star looks to show off his Ryder Cup credentials and earn a place at the Masters Tournament at Austin Country Club.

The Race to Dubai Rankings in Partnership with Rolex leader finished fourth on his debut at this event in 2021 and is back after rising to 61st in the Official World Golf Ranking with some help from a first Rolex Series victory at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in January.

That came the week after he claimed 3½ points from four as Continental Europe won the Hero Cup and he is delighted to be back in match play action in a Ryder Cup year.

"I'm very happy to be back," he said. "It's a great event. It's obviously nice to play match play for the second time this year after playing the Hero Cup back in Europe.

"It's massive being back in Europe this year. I was in that same scenario two years ago going into Whistling Straits, having had a great start and then I ended up just short.

"So I can draw from some of that past experience being close to making the team and obviously being in a good position this year, I think this is definitely a big event because of the format.

"But again, there's so much golf to be played between now and when the qualification process ends, so I think you just still have to put things into perspective."

The Frenchman does not just have the Ryder Cup on his mind, with the first Major Championship of the season just two weeks away, and Perez would love to give himself a chance of moving into the world's top 50 and sealing a third appearance at Augusta National.

"It is a big week," he said. "It would obviously be nice to have a great week, get into the top 50 and play the Masters a couple of weeks from now. It's a great incentive, definitely a big added bonus if I were to do well."

Another man flying high on the Race to Dubai Rankings in Partnership with Rolex is Min Woo Lee, who currently sits third behind Perez and Rory McIlroy.

The Australian has been in remarkable form on the DP World Tour, registering eight consecutive top-15 finishes including a second, three thirds and a fourth.

The World Number 47 also arrives in Texas off the back of a top ten at The Players Championship and despite enduring a disappointing 76 on Sunday at TPC Sawgrass, he is taking it all in his stride.

"I learned a lot," he said. "The Sunday wasn't the best Sunday but there were a lot of players that came up to me and said that they have done the same thing, which is encouraging to me, because I did feel like I let it go a little bit, but actually I am proud of the way I finished. 

"But you kind of look at the negative side in that situation and you're like, 'oh, I could have done this, I could have done that'.

"But a lot of people have done that and it's nice when the top pros have said, 'I've done the same thing', and they're number one, number two in the world. So it's just something that you learn from and that happens on a Sunday and it's not easy and if it was then the best would win every time.

"So hopefully that was my learning step and I can learn from that. But if it happens again, I mean, you've done pretty good to get there in the first place, so you should be proud of that."

Lee is making his second appearance at this event after exiting in the group stage on his debut last season and cannot wait for the head-to-head action to get under way.

"I really like it because when I make a bogey and my team-mate makes a bogey, it's even field," he said. "But when I play good, I make a lot of birdies, which is good for match play. 

"Sometimes if your playing partner doesn't hit a great shot, you have an advantage, but it is also nice stepping up on a tee and smoking a drive and putting the pressure on."

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