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May 29, 2016

Colin Montgomerie

Benton Harbor, Michigan

JOHN DEVER: Welcome back to the 77th Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid. Thank you, Colin, for spending some time here. You played so well today and all week, your thoughts on your bid.

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Yeah, I did nothing wrong. Did nothing wrong. Went out and shot 67. All credit to Rocco. He shot 66. And you can't knock it.

Even the way 15 was the turning point. Although I 3-putted 14 as well to be two shots behind, 15 was the turning point whereby I hit it in there to 15 feet and he hit it his third shot in to 12 foot and I don't know how my putt missed and he holed.

Now if that had been the other way around, we were tied playing 16 and a whole different ball game.

So, 15 turned things in his favor greatly to remain two ahead to get a half out of 15. And I just couldn't make a birdie coming in.

But 17, of course, you think you're on the green, a three would have been a good score out of the bunker, I think he would have admitted that as well, and he goes and holes it. So, that was that. At the last I had to hole my second shot to have any chance at all.

So, all credit to Rocco. But I can hold my head high here and say I made great performance, 16-under par, 67, level 67s around here in the wind isn't all bad. I just got to congratulate Rocco and go home and come back again and see if we can win this again.

It's been a great time these last three years it's been super. I played in three of these and been in last group on Sunday every time I've played. Thoroughly enjoyed it. They run a great tournament, the PGA of America do and also KitchenAid, they're a fantastic sponsor and the crowds have come out to support this area, this community as well and it's great that we have got a minimum of seven more years through 2024, I believe now. And it's great. So this community will benefit the next four out of the next seven years as well. So, it's fantastic. I look forward to coming back here.

JOHN DEVER: Could you tell us about that remarkable bunker shot on the 12th hole.

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Oh, 12. Yeah, well, I suppose it was it was quite good, really, I suppose. It was just a wedge, but it was right up against the lip and I had to really catch it properly and aim about 20 yards right of the hole. And it pitched, I didn't realize where it pitched, I couldn't see it I was blind there coming over, but it pitched right by the hole and unfortunately screwed away from the hole. I thought it might just stop and it screwed back a little bit and I missed the putt, unfortunately. But, yeah, that was a good save because the drive was poor at that particular hole. But I drove the ball well through the day.

As I say, 67 is, there's nothing wrong with 67. If I had gone out today and shot 74, I could have gone home and blamed myself. There's nothing wrong, I was beaten by the better man on the day today and congratulations to Rocco Mediate.

JOHN DEVER: Questions?

Q. I think your average around here is like 67 and a half and now over seven rounds before that?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well, 13-under last year, and then 16-under this year, 20, 29-under par. And in two events. I do like it around here, there's no question. It does suit me. My iron shots into the greens, I always said that, I had a chance of doing well here. And I'm glad I put up a great, a brave defense. And that's all one can do.

Q. Did you feel like you ever had put any pressure on Rocco? Was there any point where you felt like you were --
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Yeah, I got within one after 6, I birdied 5 and 6, I believe. And I got within one again. No, when he bogeyed 7 and I holed a good putt for par I was one behind him and I was close on the 8th as well to go level. He holed it from outside me and I missed. And then he got a great up-and-down at the 9th. And he got his up-and-downs, I tell you.

He holed a great putt on 13 for a par. A good 8-footer right-to-left. He holed a good, great birdie putt at 15. He holed his bunker shot at 17. And even the last there, to hole that from 15 foot as well. Straight in.

So, all credit to him. That's what you've got to do. As I said yesterday you got to do that, you got to hole out properly here to win and he did that. His up-and-down game today was brilliant. The first hole he was up-and-down, the second he was up-and-down, the third he was up-and-down short of the green. The fourth hole he got up-and-down from the back of the green there. The fifth hole he got up-and-down from the bunker.

So the first five holes he had five putts. And to get momentum against that is very difficult. Very difficult. He's got to give you something. And he never gave me anything. It was difficult. It was difficult. Very difficult. So I couldn't get the momentum to put the pressure on him because he was single putting, you got a guy single putting his way around, he's a difficult man to beat. Very difficult man to beat.

Q. Did you hear what he said in the bunker at 17 after the ball went in the hole? And what did you -- talk about that exchange with him?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I just turned away in disgust.


I don't know what he said. He obviously said, "Christ, that was good" or I hope he did. I hope he didn't say he duffed it or something because it was perfect. I don't know what the hell he said. But I hope it was, "My God, Martin," his caddie, "my God, Martin, that was something."

Because that shot won him the event, obviously. Because at that stage a three would have been a good score, up-and-down a good score. I was there for par. So that's a one-shot cushion going to the last. And I had a different game. Suddenly it's a three-shot cushion and he can make a mistake and still win with a three-shot cushion.

Q. And you congratulated him. What did you say to him on the green there?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well I knew that I had a good 40-footer and I had to hole it really to remain two behind. But I knew then and he knew then that that was that. And I congratulated him and said, well done, great shot. What else can one say? And, you know, and then turned away in disgust.


Q. Well played. On the subject of the putting pressure on him, how aware was your game, yourself and Rocco and what Bernhard was doing on holes 7 through 11?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I'm always conscious of what Bernhard Langer does. Always. Always. Even when he takes a week off I'm conscious of what he does. Oh, I was very aware. I'm a scoreboard watcher. I can't believe anyone isn't. I can't believe that at all. That's madness. But I'm very conscious of what Bernhard was doing and he was on a run there through the turn. He was 6-under par for the day, through 13 holes, and very much in there. If one of us or both of us had slipped up, which is very easy around this golf course, he was there to pick up the pieces and that was his job today. He came out and he came out fighting hard. He'll never give up. He'll never give up. No.

Q. Finally, how much of what he was doing forced you guys into doing what you were doing on the back in terms of scoring?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I don't think that was a part of it. To be honest with you, I think that there was certain holes that required decent shots and Rocco and I were playing well enough to execute them. He obviously was as well. He's playing a remarkable golf. He's 59, I believe, in August. Amazing what he's doing.

But as I say, I was just happy with my performance, 67 today, I thought might well be good enough. And it loses by three. So, all credit to the guy that beats me. Yeah.

Q. You've been in the first group on the last day on Sunday for the past few years like you said. Just what has that been like and then what was it like today just playing alongside Rocco all day?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well, Rocco's very popular, right? And Rocco is American.

Q. Are you sure?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well, I don't know, he's bordering. I don't know, there's a bit of Italian in there, I'm sure. All I can say is that despite that, and with respecting that, the spectators, the crowd, the audience, the patrons, whatever you like to call them here, were magnificent to me. Being a foreigner, being PGA event, knowing what happens, what happened in the Ryder Cup days and all the sort of stuff that I was the biggest threat, whatever the case, through that time. What I found when I since I joined this Champions Tour and on this tournament especially here, has been remarkable. I've been welcomed with open arms here and I really do enjoy what I'm doing out here. And that's why I'm probably playing better than I have for many many years, because of the welcome I've had and I just have to thank everybody for -- there was as much support for me out there than there was for Rocco, which is amazing really. And all credit to all of them.

JOHN DEVER: All right. Thank you, sir.

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Okay. Not at all.

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