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September 18, 2005

Paul McGinley


MICHAEL GIBBONS: Paul, appreciate you coming in, how are you feeling, disappointed obviously?

PAUL McGINLEY: Obviously. Yeah, I'm bitterly disappointed. I'm bitterly disappointed, particularly having fought so hard to finish as poorly as I did, 15 and 16. You know, I felt I felt just the ball never ran for me all day, Michael seemed to 12 sums everything up for me. 12 was massive. I've come from 3 down to all square, and to use the boxing analogy, he's on the ropes. I'm in the bunker in two. He's hit a poor second shot. He goes an extra six inches he's out of bounds and I win the hole and I go 1 up, to go 3 down to 1 up in four holes would have been massive psychologically and I would have fancied my chances from there but he manages to get a shot, chips in and I go 1 down. From there, that was a huge, huge key point psychologically for him. Even though I won the next hole, at least he had stopped the losing holes.

Q. Is there any consolation, the Ryder Cup points?

PAUL McGINLEY: No, probably I'll think about it, but to have my name on the back of that

Q. But the Ryder Cup points are huge.

PAUL McGINLEY: That's a long way off. I don't even know how many points I get. I don't know.

Of course, it's a consolation, of course it is. I desperately want to play on that team next year. But I want to get over the finish line again, that's the immediate priority.

But all credit to Michael. He obviously played very well. He played tough, and he drove the ball extremely well. Christ I can't think about a tee shot he missed and hit it out of play. I ended up hitting it out of play a couple of times and ended up giving him holes. But I can't think in the two rounds if he hit it out of play at any stage.

But that's just the way golf goes, he drove the ball well, he didn't really give me any holes, whether I get him in four holes or two days, over the two rounds I made some course management mistakes around Wentworth that you cannot afford to do. I short sided myself a few times, and in the manner of playing match play, I forgot about my course management a little bit.

You can't miss you can't miss the green, like on No. 5 this morning, 1 up playing five and I pull it left, the pin is back left and I pull it back left into the bunker. You can't miss the bunker left. You cannot miss the bunker left and I just handed him a hole. 1 up and given him an edge and I've given it straight back to him by bad course management, being aggressive with my tee shot. A little bit of a learning experience there for me. I should have played the course a little bit more in hindsight than playing the match play. But I got caught up in the match play and winning, basically.

Q. Has mental fatigue played a part as well?

PAUL McGINLEY: I'm sure it has, yeah. I mean, eight rounds of golf in four days, I mean, that's a ferocious amount of golf. I'm incredibly fit, but you do I don't care, I challenge anybody to not have made mistakes on the last day. Eight rounds of golf, you know, I fought like hell so hard every round.

Yeah, I'm sure fatigue, but then again, I'm sure Mike felt the same. He didn't hit as many destructive shots as I did over the two rounds and he kept the ball in play better than I did. He didn't really hand me any holes at all. I had to earn every hole that I won and I handed him two or three holes, and that's disappointing.

Q. Does it hurt even more as you were the outstanding player over the first three days?

PAUL McGINLEY: Of course it does. It hurts a lot. It hurts a lot. You can't correlate it really, but you've got to play the first three days, I certainly would be well ahead of the field starting out today. That counts for nothing because it's match play and different players you're playing against.

But that's why match play is exciting; you can wipe a slate clean and start off again any day. After four days, this is the poorest figures I've produced in the four days, and probably well under par but it was the poorest I produced. But let's not dwell on me too much, congratulations to Mikey, he's had a wonderful year, he's absolutely buzzing with confidence, you can see that in his game. Having played a lot with Mikey, particularly at start of the year when he wasn't playing so well, and it seems now like chopping cheese. He's absolutely buzzing. That U.S. Open win has done wonders for him and that's the kind of kick that I need is a big win like that.

Q. Can I ask about these two shots � any technical reason?

PAUL McGINLEY: Well, I'll tell you exactly the reason. Every time I hit the 4 iron today, I hit a crap shot. Today, yesterday, every day this week, I want to go and get the damned thing check. Every time I take it out of the bag this week, I hooked it left on 14 and hit it in the ditch there against Cabrera and managed to make a 3 that was a 4 iron, when I clipped it in the afternoon it was a 4 iron. When I hit it left on 3 today, I handed him the hole on 3. He's hit the fairway and I hit a 4 iron and I pulled it left. I actually have no way of stopping the ball on the green unless I played it on to the top tier and tried to 2 putt from there. I pulled it left; again bad course management. Every time I've taken out the 4 iron, I've hit a really poor shot this week. When I got to 15, it was a 4 iron yardage and I went with a 5 iron for that reason. I went for a 5 iron trying to hit a big, high draw, and I didn't draw it. I hit it solid and straight. So that's why. That's why I hit the damned thing there.

Q. And 16?

PAUL McGINLEY: 16, one of those things, I don't feel I made a hugely bad swing on it, but it just sort of came out left, caught the trees and kicked in and started kicking out. It's a tight tee shot, 3 wood off that tee shot is not really the play. I said to my caddie in the cart, Michael got a little rescue, looked like a 5 wood and he just nailed it off the tee box every time, low and straight every time. I really need to get myself one of these. I play the ball high and I play it in the air a lot. I had a 3 iron or a 5 wood or a 3 wood option going down there. 5 wood wasn't carrying the bunker, 3 iron is not carrying the bunker, 2 iron is not carrying the bunker. I've got to go with 3 wood. So it forces my hand a little bit.

Q. What did you hit out of the trees?

PAUL McGINLEY: 7 iron. In fairness to Michael now, he made a great 4, you know. I mean, I pushed him all the way with a putt for a 5 and he had to make 4 and he did.

Q. Did you play it left handed out of the bushes?

PAUL McGINLEY: No. It's just as well I�m five foot seven � Ernie couldn't have played it.

Q. When you sit back and reflect on Wentworth, it has been good to you this year?

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, it has, but it hurts like you can't imagine that I've lost twice here, come second here in two big tournaments. It hurts like you can't believe.

Q. Were the greens quicker today?

PAUL McGINLEY: No, I just didn't hold them. Unfortunately golf has a way of equalizing things out sometimes, and maybe I holed so many putts the first week, I said, today is one of those days when it wasn't going to happen for me.

As I say, if it was stroke play, I could have hidden that in the fact; I would have been well ahead. But the fact that it's match play, the slate is wiped clean and I had to do it all over again and I didn't do it well enough. I fought as hard as I could, but I just didn't play well enough, and all credit to Mike. He played well, but I think he got a couple of breaks when he needed them. I think 12 was huge. I really feel, going back to 12 again, it was huge. If I had gone 1 up there on 12, it would have been a big psychological blow for me, and against him.

MICHAEL GIBBONS: Thanks very much.

End of FastScripts.

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