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April 27, 2004

Duke Finley

Jack Nicklaus

Gary Player

JAMES CRAMER: Good morning, every one. Again, I appreciate your patience. Again, my name is James Cramer, I'm the Director of Public Relations for the PGA TOUR. And I would like to welcome you to today's Presidents Cup tele-conference. Transcripts will be available at PGA TOUR.com Presidents Cup.com. Joining us on the phone is PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem, and we'll be joined shortly after that by the 2005 Presidents Cup Captains and I would like to turn it over to Commissioner Finchem.

TIM FINCHEM: Thank you, James. And I would like to extend a welcome to the media from the United States and around the world for the announcements regarding the Presidents Cup. As all of you know last November at The Links Course at Fancourt at the Fancourt Hotel and Country Club Estate at George, South Africa we saw one of the most memorable golf events probably in history. After four days and 34 matches the competition was deadlocked at 17 points a piece. Three holes of a terrific sudden death playoff between Tiger Woods and Ernie Els, after those three holes the competition was still tied. The sportsmanship exhibited by the captain's and the players in declaring the event a tie and deciding to share the Presidents Cup epitomized what this event is all about in terms of competition and goodwill. And the reaction that we received about this Presidents Cup, the intensity of the matches, and the way it was concluded was spectacular and catapulted the Presidents Cup forward. In its brief 10 year history, we have been fortunate to have some of the most revered figures in the game serve as captains of the Presidents Cup. David Graham and Peter Thompson on the International side, Hale Irwin, Arnold Palmer and Ken Venturi on the United States side. No two men are more representative of what the Presidents Cup stands for than World Golf Hall of Fame members and captains from last year's competition, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player. I'm pleased to announce today that Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player have agreed to return as captains when the 2005 Presidents Cup returns to Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Prince William County, Virginia, in September of next year. First of all, let me introduce Gary Player. Perhaps no other are player symbolizes the international nature of the game more than Gary. He's won 163 titles worldwide, including nine Major championship victories. Well known as a course designer, 2003 Presidents Cup was played at one of his designs. The Links Course at Fancourt. Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to introduce the captain of the International team, and the 2005 Presidents Cup matches, Gary Player. Gary.

GARY PLAYER: Good morning, Tim, thank you very much for the introduction.

TIM FINCHEM: And Gary, did you want to make a comment?

GARY PLAYER: Well, yes, sir. Tim, thank you very much. I am really honored that I'm asked to be captain of the International team. It was a thrill getting to know some of my team that I hadn't really known well prior to the Presidents Cup captaincy. You know living in sort of different worlds on the Champions Tour and they on the regular TOUR, they were wonderful young guys. And I must say the same as the American team, I got to know them well. And of course being a captain on the opposite side of Jack Nicklaus, who is my dear friend and a man who I have always admired very much, it was a great thrill. But I think one measures golf by different yard sticks and sometimes you can say winning tournaments or whatever category you want to put or classify the game as, but what transpired in South Africa was something that I will never forget in my life, one of the three greatest moments I put them in three of my greatest moments in my career as a golfer, to be playing in South Africa, a country that had been barred due to its apartheid policies, participating worldwide for 48 years, basically, and now having formed this great democracy, to see us participating in the world, in the World Rugby, the World Cricket, etcetera, etcetera. And then to have the Presidents Cup held in South Africa and they really did an outstanding job at organizing, a lot of money was gained for charity, which was really a great thing in our country to help fight AIDS. And Jack and I arranged to have monies given to the golf, it's a golf foundation whereby it helps young underprivileged kids to improve their golf. So the whole thing that took place in South Africa, besides the golf was something that our country, being young and International arena again was vitally important, far more important than the golf. And to have an ending as we did was most appropriate. And everybody left feeling very satisfied. And so now we look forward to playing in America and let's see if we can find a decisive winner. The odds of tying in a match like that are remote. A thousand to one. But we look forward to participating here in the United States and I'm thrilled, absolutely thrilled to be captain.

TIM FINCHEM: Thank you, Gary. And with more than 90 victories worldwide and a record 18 professional major championships, Jack Nicklaus is recognized by many as the greatest player in the history of the game. He represented the United States on two Walker Cup teams, six World Cup and six Ryder Cup teams, captain of the two United States Ryder Cup teams, and next year will be his third appearance as captain of the United States Presidents Cup team. And we're going to give him another chance to win. Ladies and gentlemen, the captain of the U.S. team, Jack Nicklaus.

JACK NICKLAUS: Thank you, Jim. First of all, let me just say that what an honor it is to be chosen to do this, if you want to call it a duty. I certainly don't. It's certainly a pleasure. I know that the Gary and I both feel like we have a little unfinished business to take care of after last time. I know that to have a captain on the other side, a fellow like Gary Player is, as good a friend as he is and great a competitor, I know that the matches will be played in the same spirit they were played in South Africa, which was absolutely the way they should have been played. And I think that the matches that we played there, I think it was a, the most exciting and most rewarding event that I have ever been involved with in the game of golf. I won a lot of golf tournaments, I've never had one that I enjoyed more and enjoyed being part of for what it did for the game of golf, what it did for South Africa, and in general bringing the golfers of the world together. It was sensational. And to have the opportunity to do that again, I remember when I left South Africa, Tim, I said to you, I said, Tim, I said, I have been certainly captain plenty, I've been part of it all, but I said, if you ever want me again all you have to do is ask. And I think it was really an awfully nice honor and a nice compliment that you asked. I much appreciate that. And that we're looking forward to it. I know that the Robert Trent Jones Golf Course that we're going to play in 2005 will be one of the players that they will enjoy. Most of them have been there before. I think it's, again, going to be a sensational match. I think that the spirit in which the matches were played last time and the way that the outcome I thought was actually the way it should have been. There should not have been a loser last time and there wasn't. And that was great. So to have that opportunity to come back again and I, if we come out again exactly the same way, I don't think there's any other way that Gary and I would be more pleased. But obviously the name of the game is international goodwill and competition and we'll just do our best to try to bring the best of both to our teams.

TIM FINCHEM: Thank you, Jack. And I think everybody will recognize with Jack and Gary returning as captains to continue what was a dead heat in Fancourt, the 6th playing of the Presidents Cup is going to continue the tradition of sportsmanship and fierce competition that began 10 years ago. And we look forward to those matches. I'll now turn it over to James Cramer as we prepare to take questions from those of you in the media. James.

JAMES CRAMER: Thank you, commissioner. Thank you Captain Player, Captain Nicklaus. I now would like to ask the host to please open the floor for questions.

Q. Commissioner, is there any chance that the five matches will end in a tie or have you come up with a different format for a playoff?

TIM FINCHEM: We have, I've met with Gary and Jack and the Captains' Agreement, which regulates the matches will be amended for next time to provide for no playoff and to provide further that if the matches are tied at the end of competition, that the cup will be shared by the teams. The strong feeling was that there was a very positive reaction to the development last time and that that tradition, that should become part of the tradition of the Presidents Cup and continued. There may be other changes in the Captains' Agreement with respect to the matches and details, which happens every two years. Those will be deferred for further discussion and we'll have more to say about that later in the year.

Q. Did you have, did you consider any other, I mean there had been talk about sending three or four different guys out for a playoff or did you at all discuss doing it like they do in boxing and the Ryder Cup that a tie goes to the winner?

TIM FINCHEM: Yes. I think we looked at all those options. Different options of what would happen if you had a playoff, what happens if you don't have a playoff. The Ryder Cup tradition of the previous winner maintaining the cup, in the case of a tie. We consulted with players, current, players from the most recent teams and prior, players from prior teams. I think we had a wide degree of input. At the end of the day we felt that the -- if we were ever going to have a tie again, the same feeling would probably prevail. That after that many matches, the matches in a tie, that it's somewhat anti-climatic to go to a playoff. And there was no playoff option or scenario that overcame that feeling, No. 1. No. 2, on the question of whether the, if we have a tie, who gets the trophy, since we had a tie last time and we went, if we were to go with the Ryder Cup tradition, we would have to have at least one playoff if we tied next time. But the strong feeling was that this was a great tradition. That what Jack and Gary and the players recommended to end the matches in Fancourt was a terrific thing. It was a terrific gesture. The fans clearly, I mean the reaction we got after those matches was very, very positive. 50 years from now I think it will be good when people look back and say how did this come about and everybody will still talk about what happened at Fancourt as the beginning of that particular tradition. It's a great piece of history for the future of the future discussions looking back on the history of the matches.

Q. Tim, I wonder if you could address this: The U.S. Ryder Cup captain tradition is to have different guys every matches. Can you explain the thinking you have in not hesitating to have a player, either both on the International side or the U.S. side to be captain for multiple Presidents Cups?

TIM FINCHEM: Well, first of all, I think that there are a number of differences between the way these matches are structured and the Ryder Cup. And this is just one of those. Historically the Ryder Cup, at least in recent years, the last 20 years, have basically taken players as captains who are in their late 40s, they're not yet playing on the Champions Tour. We have taken a number of players who are of Champions Tour age or older in a case. So we have never felt compelled to follow the Ryder Cup. What we focused on is in talking to players with an eye toward the fans, trying to identify captains who are committed to the future of the matches, want to make the matches impactful. To have, that have a very positive reaction with players. They bring some intensity. And in most cases they are individuals who in and of their own reputation and image speak volumes about what the game is all about and bring something to the matches. And that clearly is the case with Jack and Gary. Now that's historically. In this particular case I think the overriding feeling was that we had a tie and that the way the matches concluded, the way the tie came about, after what may be the only short lived sudden death playoff in the history of the matches, that it was fitting that Jack and Gary have a chance to finish this, if you will, and go at it again. I think that was a major factor. And I think, my sense is, I think the sense of those I've talked to, is that that is something the fans would like to see and that the fans will respond to that very positively. And that also was a factor. That's how we got to that point.

Q. And once you got to the point where you were going to decide on the captains was the decision to bring Jack and Gary back an almost immediate decision? Was it an easy call?

TIM FINCHEM: Yeah, I think it was. Well, sure. I think it was a very easy call. The idea of having them back was something we started thinking about probably the night the matches concluded. We considered all kinds of alternatives over the last several months, but we kept coming back to this alternative because there are a number of other factors here which aren't so evident. Both of these guys put their hearts and souls into making these matches special in a lot of different ways. Very special for the players, the interaction they had with the players was very well received, the way they communicated what the cup matches were all about in terms of what happened in South Africa was enormously impactful in South Africa. They are, today, the two leading ambassadors of the game. And to have them come back is just a plus for the future of the cup. So there are a lot of reasons why this was the obvious and the right step.

Q. Question for Jack. Jack, a little while ago you said that the Presidents Cup in South Africa, I think your words were the most exciting and rewarding event you've ever been involved in. Why was that? Can you expound on that a little bit?

JACK NICKLAUS: I think that when you do something by yourself, for yourself and I think that you have a certain reward. But here, anything that's done, I look at the Presidents Cup or the Ryder Cup, whichever one you want to take, as being a lot bigger than any individual player. And to be involved in matches that were played in the spirit they were played, played the way they were played, the response, something that I haven't really said to the press, you know Phil Mickelson, for instance, I think it was a big turn around in Phil Mickelson's life. I think the way he handled himself down there, he lost five matches, never won a match. He never varied from being supportive. He never varied from being a good team member. He attended every function. He was enthusiastic. I think that what happened to Phil Mickelson down there helped prepare him and propel him into the Masters win this year. I think it was a big factor. And I told him that. And that I was really proud of him. I thought he did a great job. And so many other things happened like that. The things that happen in those matches, you know, Gary and I, when was the last time you saw in a playoff the two captains walking down the fairway together? When did you see the last time you would see team members from both teams walking together down there. When would you ever see that you go to a country such as South Africa and so much good comes out of it. The people there, the what happened with President Mbeki. The president didn't know what was going on really at the start of the week. By about two thirds of the way through that, he understood what was going on. He became a great supporter and was absolutely fabulous. And I remember when he got up to make a speech, he got up to have a speech, he took his speech out and he threw it down. And he spoke. And he spoke from the heart. And I remember when he came back to the table and I looked over at him and I just started tapping my heart and he got the biggest smile on his face. He knew exactly what was going on. And he brought

de Clerc down. And I mean everything went on. It was just, it was so sensational. And it was just an event that was so much bigger than me and Gary and any individual there. It was the game of golf. And what it meant really to goodwill around the world.

Q. Two questions. First for Jack. Congratulations. I think this is your first home game for the Presidents Cup. You told the guys in South Africa that this was probably your swan song and as you said you told Tim to call if needed. I'm just curious what made you make yourself available again?

JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I just I felt, as I said earlier, I think I had, I certainly have been blessed with far more than my share. But it was maybe time for somebody else. But if they felt that I was needed or they felt like it was right for me to be involved, if it was right for the game of golf, then I would certainly put aside my own wishes to go off into the sunset and I would be delighted to be involved. But that was only if Tim felt it was appropriate and they wanted me back. And I just said that's one of the greatest compliments I had is to be wanted back.

Q. Does that mean Sluman comes back as assistant?

JACK NICKLAUS: He would be a pretty darn good one. But let's just hope Jeff makes the team himself.

Q. Tim, I had a question for you. If you're still there. We have had, the history of the Presidents Cup has been, as you mentioned, great figureheads in the game or statements and what have you, do you see once we get beyond the rematch at RTJ, a movement toward more contemporaries, a Fred Couples, a Nick Price, Greg Norman type or do you think this will be kind of a mark of the Presidents Cup to have these type of figures being the captains?

TIM FINCHEM: Well, I don't know. I don't feel the need to -- we have had -- the answer to your question I guess is we have had a lot of great figures involved and heads of state. And I should remind every one that George W. Bush, President Bush has agreed to chair the event in Washington next, which will come after Gerald Ford and Former President, President Bush and Bill Clinton and then Prime Minister Howard and then President Mbeki. So we have had a good list of Presidents who have been involved as well. But Doug, I don't feel the need to, and I don't think any of us feel that we have to categorize who we're looking for down the road in terms of captains. I think that you threw out a couple of names there, Greg Norman, an obvious candidate also is, would be older than Hale Irwin was the first time he was captain. So I'm not sure that would be a particular departure from what we have done. But I think this time we could have chosen a couple players, you know, much younger, currently active players, we could have gone with older players. I just don't think we look at it that way. We try to figure out rather than say there's a formula, you know, who would add the most to the cup. Who would the players respond to. Who is going to bring the most energy to it. Who are the fans going to respond to in terms of somebody that they appreciate being the captain. Those are the things that we look at. And I don't think that lends itself to any particular formula of age or where an individual is in their career.

Q. Also, Tim, when you, you mentioned earlier about some possible changes in the Captains' Agreement which happens every time probably. Do you have anything in mind what might be changed?

TIM FINCHEM: There's a half a dozen things. Little things that relate to the schedule of the matches and the some of the details in setting the matches up that will be reviewed. What we do every two years is we review the entire agreement with the captains. We make sure we look at what's happened in previous matches and we try to improve upon it. And we'll do that. I think that in talking to Jack and Gary, we all agreed that this one issue probably needed to be resolved because we knew it was going to be a question. And that it was going to be a lot focus behind. So let's get that one resolved and then if there's other details we need to talk about, I don't have any particular thing, but in a couple of months we'll address the rest of the agreement and if changes are forthcoming we'll make that available.

Q. And then you'll call?


Q. Thank you. Tim, I wondered, each of the American Presidents Cup matches has been held in the Washington area, are you now prepared or are you close to being prepared to say that RTJ will be a permanent site for this thing?

TIM FINCHEM: I think we're where we have been, Len. We like Washington, it lends itself the golf course has held up great. The club is very supportive. I think it's going to be huge next year. It's nice to have it close to where the President of the United States is, because it's easy for the President to be involved. That may not always be the case, but it also doesn't mean we shouldn't look at other opportunities. So we're just, it's just something we evaluate. We don't feel pressed to make, say this is the way it will always be. We feel that this is something we ought to look at every couple years and make a determination.

Q. Question for Tim. The no playoff, the new rule, no playoff, Tim, is that something for all time or what do you think on that?

TIM FINCHEM: Well, I think we like the idea of the, of using what we felt was a very special moment last year as the beginning of a tradition. So if I had to guess, you know, I'm not always going to be sitting here, and I don't make all these decisions anyway, but if I had to guess, I would, for the foreseeable future, I think this is the way we're headed.

Q. Forgive me, it's not in regards to the Presidents Cup. Earlier this year at the Players Championship there was some talk that you had suggested players show a little bit more personality and things along those lines. I'm wondering if you could clarify exactly what was said and then if I could follow-up with another question.

TIM FINCHEM: Well, it's been -- it's interesting you would ask that question and we would like to keep these questions this morning to the Presidents Cup certainly in deference to our two captains. But just quickly, it's been blown out of proportion a little bit. It was an hour and a half meeting where I covered 150 different things and one comment, we shared a commentary from, we used commentary from other people outside the TOUR, one of them said, you know, it's great to see players show some emotion, let it go a little bit more. That was the extent of it. We're not -- we weren't suggesting that, as has been suggested, that players kind of manufacture emotional response. A player is going to do his thing out there. There was a recommendation to me that the players do sort of allow it, if they feel it, allow themselves to open up a little bit more in some cases. But there's no campaign to try to get a player to alter the way he normally would behave. So it's been blown out of proportion a little bit.

Q. And that pretty much answered the question. I appreciate that.

TIM FINCHEM: Thank you.

Q. Last question, I promise. Jack, I'm curious, this being a relatively new matches compared to the Ryder Cup, I wonder if you could, looking back, if you noticed a greater intensity or passion from your players in South Africa than you did in Australia.

JACK NICKLAUS: Well, let's just go through all of it, if you want, Doug. I was fortunate enough to captain two Ryder Cup teams. And I think both Ryder Cup teams had great passion. They wanted to play, they enjoyed it, it was great. We won one and we lost one. Obviously the enthusiasm when we won was great, the other when we lost they wanted to go hide in the corner somewhere. Then the matches in Australia, and I frankly think that the guys down there went down there with the attitude that they had won the Presidents Cup a couple of times and they were going to go down there and breeze through that and then move on. Well, they got their, you know, their, they got it handed to them. And I think that largely because they probably weren't as mentally prepared, it was a new set of matches, did not have the history of the Ryder Cup at that point in time and I think that they were embarrassed by it. And I had a lot of the same guys on that team that I had on the team this time. And those guys came down there this time, every single one ever them. And all I ever said before the matches was just give me 12 guys, if somebody doesn't want to go, you know, don't go. That's fine. But just give me 12 guys that want to play. And I had 12 guys that wanted to play. And I thought the matches this time, the attitude, the camaraderie, the everything that went on was done well. And I didn't have to say anything. They did it the way I thought it should be done without me saying anything. And that was it. And I thought it was just great. So I saw the growth not only of these players and the stature of the matches, and the intensity and the stature or and value that they put on those matches, grow over that four year period tremendously.

Q. Given the quality of play from Thursday all the way through to Sunday, do you think this could be, as we looking, as we look back, a turning point in the Presidents Cup?

JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I think the Presidents Cup just needed time. I think that you look at the Presidents Cup and it takes care of all the world but Europe. And the Ryder Cup just takes Europe and the United States. And certainly I think the world's bigger than Europe. And the competition played with a worldwide matches, I think that has the potential of being bigger matches. Now that doesn't mean that the Ryder Cup isn't going to remain important. The United States versus Europe is a heck of a competition. But I think that the potential of having interest around the world is greater in the Presidents Cup than it is in the Ryder Cup.

JAMES CRAMER: Again, thank you for joining us for today's announcement that Gary Player will be the captain of the 2005 International Presidents Cup team and Jack Nicklaus will be the captain of the 2005 Presidents Cup team. Transcripts will be available at PGA TOUR.com and Presidents Cup.com and also by calling TOUR headquarters and asking for Chris Reimer. Again, thank you very much for your patience at the beginning and we appreciate it and have a good day.

End of FastScripts�.

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