November 21, 2001
JULIUS MASON: Retief, interesting playing out there. If you would not mind giving us some thoughts on your round and we'll go to Q&A.
RETIEF GOOSEN: I played very well off the tee. I hit three fairways today, so that cost me the chances of getting across the flag. That was a shame, and although I got it 2-under through the front nine, 10, I 3-putted from 45 feet and mis-hit my 5-iron on the 11th and went in the water; that was really all my chances gone. I had a few chances coming in, but obviously 16 and 17, that was the end of the story for me. But I enjoyed the week. It's been great. I'm looking forward to trying to qualify for this again next year.
JULIUS MASON: Good answer.
RETIEF GOOSEN: It's a great event, great place. I'd like to come here for a holiday sometime soon. I enjoyed it. Tiger played nice and solid and he kept it in play.
JULIUS MASON: Questions for Retief.
Q. Are you sticking around here in Kauai or are you leaving?
RETIEF GOOSEN: I'm flying back to South Africa tonight, so I will arrive there Friday afternoon. I'm playing a charity tournament on the weekend.
Q. Your tee shot on 11, was that a mis-hit?
RETIEF GOOSEN: I tried to hit just a nice, soft 5-iron there and I just hit it a little bit heavy. So it was always going for a drink.
Q. You'll be here for the Mercedes in January?
RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, I'm coming back.
Q. Or you going to stick around for the Sony?
RETIEF GOOSEN: No, I'm not staying for Sony, but I'm coming before New Year's. I'm not planning on playing the Sony, no.
Q. How important was it to post a low number on the front nine, knowing how the back nine played yes yesterday?
RETIEF GOOSEN: Like I said, it was nice to get at least 2-under on the back nine. But obviously, 10 and 11 put me a little bit out of it. Like I said, I made a couple of birdies coming in, but bogeys on 16 and 17, and the missed short putt on 14; that really cost my chances of putting any sort of pressure on Tiger.
JULIUS MASON: Thank you very much for joining us. David Toms finishes at 9-under for the event. Some thoughts on your round today?
DAVID TOMS: I felt like I played well. I just couldn't put -- could not make the putts to put any pressure on Tiger, especially down the last six or seven holes. You know, 16, I obviously made bogey there, but I was pretty much out of it at the time. I thought he was pretty much in control. So I just, like I said, I could not make the putts. I hit a great shot at 11 and couldn't make it; and hit a couple of really good shots and was never able to capitalize, really, to get close to put any pressure on Tiger. But I'm happy with the way I played. Felt like I played solid. I was in control pretty much both days of what I was trying to do. So, obviously you want to win, but I still feel good about the way I played.
Q. Your thinking on 18 when you went for that green in two?
DAVID TOMS: My thinking was, I was trying to hit it about 30 feet right of the pin. I knew with a 3-wood, I had enough club to carry the front part of the green, so I felt like if I pulled it I could get over that front part of the water there. And I didn't think I could hit it over the green. So when it took off, I thought, I didn't really know what to think. I knew I pulled it a little bit. I knew I hit it hard, though and fortunately it hit in the soft stuff just over in the rocks there and it stopped. If that ball hits on the green to the right of where it was, it would have gone to the back edge. I guess I got a little bit lucky, but it was a nice way to finish off the event.
Q. If you're happy with the way you played, what do you say about Tiger and the way he plays?
DAVID TOMS: You know, I think when he was playing well, he plays another level of golf that I can't -- I can't play at that level because I don't have the power. I mean, when he's driving the ball in the fairway, especially on the par 5's, it's an advantage. Everything has to go right. Like I said, I had my opportunity to make some putts to maybe put a little bit of pressure on him. You know, when you get to be tied or, you know, maybe the fairway shrinks a little bit, I don't know, I was not able to do that. So I still feel like I played well.
JULIUS MASON: David Duval, your thoughts on the round today.
DAVID DUVAL: My golf was extremely mediocre, once again. I've had a nice time here at Poipu Bay. The people have been wonderful. The PGA has done a great job. I hope if I return in the future that I won't be at a point where fatigue and burnout run head into a couple of days of golf. Unfortunately, I was coming in off a long stretch something I have not done in quite some time, probably since '95 or '96. I've been kind of done. I've been ready to be done with golf for a little while. I think it showed quite clearly in my performance. You know, I hit it a little bit better today. I know exactly the things I need to work on and what the problems were yesterday and today. But like I said, I'm at the point where I don't really want to go hit balls right now and do the things I need to do. I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving, a few days off and then some solid hard practice for a few days before I go out to Los Angeles for the Williams. I enjoyed being in the group. I think David Toms and Tiger played quite well. It was fun to watch. I tried to stay out of the way as best I could for the chop, and it's been a good experience. I hope, like I said, if I return in the future, that I'm more rested and ready to play.
Q. Just wondering, starting out this morning you were a bit behind. Is it hard to stay focused given the level of play that these guys provided being a little out of it just at the outset? Did you change the way you approached your aggressiveness at all?
DAVID DUVAL: It doesn't. Not really. For me, today was about trying to make a few changes and hit a couple of solid golf shots. Competing against these guys, I don't even know where I started, eight or nine shots behind third place. I mean, if it was me, I would feel pretty good about my lead. Like I said, for me it's just trying to correct a few setup things and ball position problems -- and hit a couple shots and I did that for a few holes. Towards the end. I just kind of really ran out of gas. Like everybody in this room, I'm probably really looking forward to the long Thanksgiving weekend and I'm glad to be done working right now for a few days.
Q. When you reached 13, did it ever enter your mind to consider driving the green?
DAVID DUVAL: No. That never even entered my mind. How long is the hole? I can't hit the ball that far.
JULIUS MASON: Thanks for joining us very much.
DAVID DUVAL: Thank you.
JULIUS MASON: Tiger, if you would not mind letting us know what you thought about out there today?
TIGER WOODS: I thought when I got off to the ideal start today, I birdied the first two holes, and I felt like I hit the ball well all day. I hit it solid all day. I hit a couple of shots out to the right. But I really putted well today. I hit a lot of good putts, and I told Stevie on the 16th green, "I could have shot zero today." That's what it felt like, if those putts would have gone in the middle part of the round -- I didn't make anything in the middle part of the round, but toward the end, I hit a couple of good shots toward the end.
JULIUS MASON: If you would not mind going through your card.
TIGER WOODS: No. 2, another 311-yard drive. Hit a 4-iron from 212 and I made a 30-foot putt. (Reading from stat sheet). I did? (Laughs). I 2-putted from 30 feet, okay, that's what it was. (Laughter.) No. 4, I hit a sand wedge from 99 yards and made a 30-footer. No. 5, I hit a sand wedge in the bunker from 94 yards.
JULIUS MASON: So it sounds like we're telling the truth in here.
TIGER WOODS: I'm just reading what you guys wrote. I missed a 6-footer. I hit driver and 6-iron on 6. Chipped it up there to about five feet and made it. 7, I hit a pitching wedge in there to about eight feet left of the hole. 14, hit a driver and a 3-iron up there about 20 feet and 2-putted. 17, I hit a 4-iron to a foot and a half. 18, I hit a driver and a 4-iron and 2-putted from about 40.
JULIUS MASON: Questions, folks.
Q. How do you explain your performance and dominance in this tournament?
TIGER WOODS: (Smiles.) I don't know what it is. One thing, it's always great to come here because one, you've either won a major or done really well. '98, I had not won a major, but I had done well enough to get in. It's always a privilege to come here because it's an honor to play in a tournament in which you're playing with the other major championship winners. I look forward to, it. I get up for it. I get pretty excited about it, to play with these guys, because they have won the biggest tournaments in golf. To go out there and compete against them, that's pretty fun.
Q. You look comfortable out at this course; is that how you feel?
TIGER WOODS: Yesterday, I didn't feel comfortable with my swing. I feel comfortable being here, yeah. But I didn't feel comfortable with my swing yesterday. I kind of just slopped it around and hung in there. But today I hit some good shots and made some putts and really could have shot, as I said, zero. I could have shot a really low round if I would have made some putts in the middle part of the round.
Q. 17 was a great shot, but the bunker shot, the fairway bunker shot, I thought that was your shot of the day?
TIGER WOODS: Stevie said that's probably one of the best shots I've hit all year. One, I needed to hit it in there, at least on the green and give myself a birdie putt, just in case David hit it up there close to answer him if he did make birdie, because the tournament was not over yet. That shot, it was a 5-iron. I had to -- I had 208, it says here, and I absolutely flushed it. I hit that shot really solid. I held it up against the wind, and the shot never left the flag and it was just straight at it; I drew it just a little. And that putt, I don't know how that putt didn't go in. Went right around the hole. (Smiles).
Q. How important was it to post a low number on the front nine knowing how the back nine played?
TIGER WOODS: You always have to take advantage of the front nine here. The guys who have done well in this golf course have all shot good front nines. The back nine, it's a couple of shots harder and with the pin locations today, they are in the corners near the water and you can't really take a go at them. So the only holes you really have to take advantage on the golf course is the front nine. I got off to the ideal start again, just like I did yesterday, and that definitely gives you a lot of confidence and I went on from there. I had one par through seven holes.
Q. Fairways and greens, was that the game plan coming into today's final round, especially when you had a one-stroke lead on the back nine?
TIGER WOODS: Well, the game plan was to drive the ball in play. Put it in the fairway, and then from there, because there was a lack of wind, your tee shots were going to get down there a little bit closer -- from being here in years past -- which means that I would have shorter irons or wedges in my hand; and therefore, I could be aggressive. And that's what I was on the front nine, put the ball in play, from there I attacked and made a few putts.
Q. That 30-footer, No. 4, everybody else is looking to birdie and you drop it in first; how big was that mentally?
TIGER WOODS: I thought it was -- I mean, I hit a terrible tee shot. The next shot wasn't very good and then slopped it in the hole from that far, when those guys are up there inside 12 feet -- I think it added a little momentum; put it in my corner, that's for sure. Then I gave it right back on the next hole and made a bogey.
JULIUS MASON: Questions? Questions twice? Thank you very much.
End of FastScripts...