SHANGHAI—Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama set his sights firmly on winning a major after destroying a world-class field to become the first Asian to win a World Golf Championship at the weekend.
“Winning today, I feel has got me closer to being able to compete a lot better in the major tournaments,” said the 24-year-old sensation after winning the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai in record-breaking style.
Matsuyama finished on 23 under par to win by seven shots —the biggest margin in the history of the event dubbed “Asia’s Major”—from Henrik Stenson and Daniel Berger, with Rory McIlroy and Bill Haas one shot further back.
“My next goal is, of course, to win a major. I’m going to do all that I can to prepare well for that,” added the quietly spoken Matsuyama.
YE Yang is the only Asian man to have won a major — the 2009 US PGA Championship.
Matsuyama, with two wins a second in his last three starts, rose to a career high sixth in the world in the new rankings released Monday.
His victory in Shanghai means he already leads the 2017 US PGA Tour FedEx Cup points standings.
The WGC-HSBC Champions was his 10th victory and his third on the PGA Tour since turning professional in August 2013, equalling Shigeki Maruyama’s record for the most PGA Tour wins in history by a Japanese player.
“Shigeki Maruyama is a good friend of mine, and he always said that I was going to pass his records,” said Matsuyama.