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September 27, 2002

Sam Torrance


GORDON SIMPSON: Sam, I suppose one point in it at the end of the first day, this is really what the Ryder Cup is all about, isn't it.

SAM TORRANCE: It's tremendous, tremendous. If we get the last two days rained out, we've won.

GORDON SIMPSON: You had a great start and they had a comeback in the afternoon.

SAM TORRANCE: Foursomes is very tough. A couple of -- it's what foursomes golf is. And 24 of the best golfers in the world are out there, so it's going to be tough to win points.

GORDON SIMPSON: It seemed like the atmosphere was everything we expected.

SAM TORRANCE: Wonderful. The crowds were just amazing, not one incident in the whole day. And it was fantastic. Didn't see one drunk yet. Yet. Maybe a couple later, and I might be one of them after today.

Q. Could you have a word with Lee's performance today?

SAM TORRANCE: What can I say? As I say, the boy has a lot of talent, and he proved it this week. I'll go back to what I said twice this week, what he said in the beginning of the week is how you respond to pressure that counts; it's not really the form coming into the matches. And he's responded with style.

Q. Can I ask what you thought when Sergio decided to go for the green at 10?

SAM TORRANCE: I wasn't there, but I was delighted, because he is unbelievable. He hits shots -- he hit 3-wood on the back of that green, practice round. Obviously he can knock it in there. And it was fourball. Foursomes, I might give him a wee smack in the wrists, but fourball is definitely worth the go. If you're confident enough to knock it on the green, go ahead and do it. That's what is unique about the 10th hole.

Q. He says he'll do it again.

SAM TORRANCE: Great. As long as he pushes it a wee bit this time.

Q. Can I ask you the reasons behind pairing Fasth and Price tomorrow in the first series, and also what you feel they are as a team?

SAM TORRANCE: Well, if I've done Fasth and Price I'd be in trouble!

Always, the whole week, Fulke and Price were definitely going to be a team. They're perfect for foursomes, they play the exact same game. They're the same strong hearts, not afraid of anything. They hit a lot of fairways, a lot of greens. They're perfect for foursomes.

Q. You still haven't picked Jesper; are you still concerned about his form?

SAM TORRANCE: Not at all. Jesper is ready. I just thought it might have been a bit much to put him in in foursomes, because that's a wee bit extra pressure. But there's a fair chance he'll be playing in the afternoon.

Q. Once again Monty has been a key player for you. Marvelous Ryder Cup record, what would you have to say about his performance today?

SAM TORRANCE: Tremendous. He's a class act, Colin. His tee shot on the last match was beautiful, a lot of pressure. Gone from 3-up back to all square, and you stand on that last tee, you definitely need bicycle clips. He hit the most beautiful tee shot. Bernhard was a wee bit unlucky with the second shot, didn't come around enough and left Colin with a delicate, tricky chip. I certainly wouldn't like to play it. It shot off the green, and just ran a wee bit too far back, but got a half point.

Q. When the other side was in here there was a lot of talk about how important they saw that half point. What do you guys make of that?

SAM TORRANCE: Well, I was glad to get half a point, when you're standing on the last tee. And in foursomes golf when the momentum has changed it's very difficult to grab it back again, especially as there's only one hole to go. And we were definitely favorites coming down that last hole after the tee shot and after the second shot and after the third shot and after the fourth shot. And that was great. It was a great half point. Both teams played very well.

Q. What's the overriding emotion tonight? Should we be pleased with the score, a wee bit disappointed or how would you sum that up?

SAM TORRANCE: We're ahead, aren't we? That will do me.

Q. How important is it psychologically to have beaten Tiger Woods twice today for your team?

SAM TORRANCE: Tiger is part of the team. We're playing a team. There's no individuals out there; we're playing a team. I'm sure Tiger is hurting, he's lost twice. He's the greatest player that probably ever lived. But that's what the Ryder Cup is. Anyone is beatable out there. We've always said that. And psychologically I guess it would be good for the rookies to see the number one player in the world has been beaten twice, lift them up. But I'm sure he'll be back.

Q. How has the American comeback this afternoon affected the pairings you've chosen for tomorrow morning?

SAM TORRANCE: Not at all.

Q. Could you also explain why you've put Fulke and Price at the top of the order; is there a significance in that?

SAM TORRANCE: Not really, no significance at all. Nope, none. Well, actually there is, but I can't tell you (laughter.)

Q. Can you talk again about the 10th. Some of the American players said earlier that they've always considered it the greatest match play hole in the world, Zinger said that. Is there any chance of moving up a little bit to make it --?

SAM TORRANCE: No, they can all go for the green. They can all reach the green. Who wants to play a par-4 that's a 3-iron? It wasn't designed to be a 3-iron, 2-iron, 1-iron on the green par-4. As I said the other day, technology has overtaken the hole and that's why we're off the back tee. It is still drivable, comfortably drivable, obviously a risk, but that's what the hole is. And I'm sure if you ask those guys now that have played it a couple of times from the fairway with the tight pin at the back, it's a lovely wee hole.

Q. Bernhard has over the years tended to resist playing 36 holes a day. He's playing in the morning; is he strong enough to cope with all this?

SAM TORRANCE: Sure. He's the fittest man on the team.

Q. Is he?

SAM TORRANCE: I would say so. I wouldn't like to have a run against him, anyway. He's very fit, Bernhard. And he may play five times.

Q. There was some wonderful shots today, great shot-making from both sides, wonderful putts. I'm wondering as a captain are you always nervous -- are you nervous, second guessing yourself, wondering what could have been better or do you actually get moments where you can just enjoy it, feel the beauty of the game and the beauty of the moment and actually enjoy it or are you just too stressed?

SAM TORRANCE: I can assure you I'm not stressed. This is without doubt, apart from the birth of my children, this is the finest week I've ever, ever been involved in. I'm enjoying it immensely. I actually can't believe how relaxed I am out there. It's actually surprised me, because I've got so much talent in my hands. I have got talent in my hands, but I've got talent in my team. It's wonderful. And I just teed them up and let them go. It's great to watch. And I am enjoying it, I promise you.

Q. Within all that enjoyment, there were two matches this afternoon which looked like they were going to take and they didn't get either of them. That's got to weigh a little bit on you or a little bit on the team?

SAM TORRANCE: Foursomes is very tough, always very tough. As I say, we're 2-up and 3-up, and we only got half a point out of it. If I was being supremely critical I'd say I was a tad bit disappointed, but not really. We could have got nothing out of it, and we would have been tied going into tomorrow. No, I'm delighted. I got everything out of my team today. They gave me everything out there. There was wonderful camaraderie. As soon as the players lost they'd say "where do you want me to go" or as soon as they won, "where do you want me to go and watch?" It's great, fantastic.

Q. Could you talk about the two rookies that played today, but particularly Niclas this morning?

SAM TORRANCE: And so did Paul McGinley. And I said "I'm really sorry I'm not playing you in the morning." Because he really played well. The guys they played against, they were 6-under, which is tough to take. But I've got a wealth of talent, I'm obviously going to have to leave out some good players.

Q. Have you such faith in your team that you'd take a one-point lead tomorrow night or are you stressing that you need to get more than that?

SAM TORRANCE: No. It's a tough question, Mark. I'm very happy to be a point ahead tonight. I'd like to be more ahead tomorrow night. I don't think we have to be more ahead tomorrow night, but it would be nice.

Q. What was the thinking starting with the foursomes tomorrow, four balls this morning and foursomes tomorrow. Why not start tomorrow with the four balls, as well?

SAM TORRANCE: I always thought foursomes are the toughest format to get right and your pairings and winning points. I always thought start with your strength and finish with your strength. To finish with your strength in foursomes, you can't really do that, but I can certainly finish with my strength in fourball. That was my thinking.

End of FastScripts....

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