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September 28, 2016

Justin Rose

Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

JOHN DEVER: Good morning, again, from the 41st Ryder Cup. Thankful to be joined by Mr. Justin Rose. Justin, welcome to your fourth Ryder Cup.

You have quite an incredible record in foursomes and fourball, combined six wins, one loss and a couple of halves. What is it about this team game that really brings out the best in your game?

JUSTIN ROSE: I don't know exactly. Obviously, I love it, I enjoy it. The Ryder Cup, I think is -- I get excited by it and I prepare for it, so it's a big deal to me. So it's something I do focus on.

But when it comes down to actually why, you know, I've been blessed with good partners, I guess. Obviously, Ian Poulter, who has a stellar Ryder Cup record himself, he's been a partner of mine, and same in Henrik Stenson, I suppose. Those are the guys I've played the majority of golf with, both great competitors and great players. Obviously, it's a team game, so you have to give a lot of the -- what's the word -- a lot of respect to your partner, I suppose, from that point of view.

But yeah, hopefully my game is somewhat transferrable. I'm fairly decent all-around, so hopefully pretty easy to pair from that point of view.

JOHN DEVER: I think it's safe to say, you're one of the leaders in your team room. So does leadership begin in a Ryder Cup this week or did it begin weeks and months ago?

JUSTIN ROSE: I think in essence it begins this week. I think there's very -- we're all very focused on our everyday lives, so to speak, especially with FedExCup and some very, very big events running into this. We all have to stay very focused on the job at hand.

There might be the occasional get-together. For example, Darren got us all together at THE PLAYERS Championship. And you become very aware that the Ryder Cup is around the corner, so you may arrange one or two more dinners with the boys than you otherwise would. So it's done in a very soft way, but you're not changing the world at that point.

I think it's all about really what happens in that team room this particular week that is the important thing. Obviously Europe's had a great 20-year run in The Ryder Cup, and I think a lot of that's to do with the respect that we pay to the guys that turn the tide for us, your Seves, your Olazábals, your Nick Faldos, Langers, guys like that. I think that's the common thread for us.

But every single Ryder Cup, there's a new set of faces, there's a new dynamic in the team room that you have to adjust to and you have to get working, so I think it's very much on the week.

Q. How does the nationalism you experienced in Rio compare to the feelings of team spirit that you have this week?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, you know, I think obviously when you -- when I got to Rio, it really hit me that I was part of something bigger than my individual sport. Being a part of Team BG and the wider goal of the team and the medal tally and something like that was very inspiring. It kind of made you want to bring your best. It made you want to be accountable and give 100 percent.

And I think from that point of view, it's very similar to this week. You have 11 other guys, plus the captain and vice captain that you really want to give a hundred percent for. And I think that's where team golf, you become a better version of yourself for that particular week. You have more responsibility to give 100 percent and make sure you're 100 percent prepared, and tick as many boxes in terms of recovery and preparation and giving 100 percent as you can.

Whenever you play for yourself, obviously you do your best to have that mentality, but it's potentially easier to skip one or two things when it's just yourself you're relying upon versus when you're trying to honor a bunch of other guys too.

Q. You're obviously one of the people who have had your private TUEs published online by the hackers. Has that bothered you in the buildup to this, and are you worried that people might read that website and look at you with unfounded suspicion?
JUSTIN ROSE: Honestly, I wasn't bothered one little bit about it. In fact, I didn't even know TUEs were kept private, if I was honest. It was a situation where we went through the right channels. It was for an anti-inflammatory that I took in May, when I had herniated a disc and it's just simply a medication that helps you reduce swelling so you can get on with your active rehab in the gym.

From my point of view, all the boxes were ticked. It's not like you take something and ask for forgiveness. You apply for it, it's granted, you do it, and that whole procedure is in place for an athlete who is having medical issues, not someone who is trying to gain anything from it. So from my point of view, not concerned one little bit.

Q. Can you talk about your stature in The European Team, did that maybe go up a notch or two after Gleneagles, how well you played there? And do you feel like it suits you to have characters like Rory on the team maybe taking the spotlight away from you?
JUSTIN ROSE: I think every Ryder Cup you play, your so-called stature goes up just based on an experience level. Any time you have experienced guys on the team, the captain will look at you to pass on some that of that experience to the guys coming through, and they will face some of the challenges we faced in our first Ryder Cup and second Ryder Cup.

Because it's once every two years, you never get comfortable with it. But at the same time, you know what's coming and I think that that helps you deal with it probably in an easier way.

So obviously yeah, we have many, many great players in our team. We've had a great year from a Ryder Cup point of view. We've won some big tournaments within our team, and obviously having someone like Rory on the team to -- you know, he's still in the young category, but he's in the experienced category.

So obviously, especially coming off the FedExCup, he's a guy that obviously he can absorb a lot of the pressure and run with it. He's pretty comfortable in that role.

Q. Can you tell us about your relation to Henrik and what makes you such a successful pairing in The Ryder Cup?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think we've got very similar golf games. We hit the ball a very similar distance, so we can work off one another from that point of view, clubbing point of view. Statistically we play a similar game, our fairways and greens. Our ball-striking would be our strength.

So again, we feel -- the shots he hits, I'm comfortable looking at. It feels familiar to me. And then our caddies get along incredibly well. My caddie, Fooch, and his caddie, Lordy. So when we get out on the golf course, it's not just a team of me and Henrik. It's a team of four that feel comfortable together.

Q. Last night you had Paul O'Connell coming in; can you tell us about your experience with Paul, and also what it means to come out of the golf bubble a bit and see other sports people that way?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, when it comes to peak performance, I think you can relate it to business. You can relate it to other sports. There's so many common threads that some people who are successful integrate to their lives that make them successful that you think, wow, I can relate that back to golf or I can relate that to my life.

There's definitely a lot that he brought. The passion is what he really brought and just how important it is to be part of a team; and not necessarily be part of a team, but make your team better for future generations; and be accountable to the number on the back of your shirt; and what that particularly means in their sport so that the next No. 5 has something to look up to and has a role model.

So you know, obviously that can be very much easily transferred to our team this week in the sense of every single one of us has an honor to represent ourselves and the team in the best way possible and leave it in a better place for the next team in two years' time.

Q. All the American players this week have been talking about having more ownership this year, different vibe this year, doing more of the things that Europe's been doing this year. Do you get a sense of that reading stuff or does your team worry about them finally catching up with all your ideas that Team Europe has had?
JUSTIN ROSE: I don't know if they are catching up with us on our ideas. I think that each team has to be unique and they have to be true to themselves. So that's what they need to figure out, and if they are figuring that out, then obviously they are doing a good job.

Yeah, it does sound like they are enjoying it; and you know, at the end of the day, it all should be fun. It should be 12 guys getting together and having a good time and that probably is the way to play good golf.

I think Europe is very comfortable in the way we do things and we are not necessarily looking across the road to see what's going on in the red side of the clubhouse. We're very much focused on our role and our job. The only way to win a Ryder Cup is to deliver on the golf course and I think everybody realizes that.

There's been a lot of talk prior, and I think that's when Friday becomes a fun day because it's time just to play golf. We feel comfortable with our preparation. I'm sure they feel comfortable with their preparation and it's just going to be great to get out on the golf course on Friday.

Q. I'm wondering whether Darren asked you to pack the gold medal this week as an example of more European pride in the team room?
JUSTIN ROSE: And a way of annoying Henrik Stenson (laughter).

No, listen, it's not something that I'm touting around, not at all. This week, Danny doesn't have the green jacket in the team room, Rory doesn't have the FedExCup in the team room. I think this is about The Ryder Cup and that little gold trophy, and that's enough for us all this week.

Yeah, it's nice to have belief in your teammates that they can stand up to pressure and they can deliver on the big stage and I think that's what the gold medal and the green jacket and the FedExCup and Henrik's Claret Jug, that's what they represent. They represent that we are guys that can play the best golf when it counts, but we are after that little gold trophy. We are not after anything else this week. We are not about any of the other victories that the team had enjoyed all year long.

Q. I believe your dad had a chance to watch you here shortly before he passed away. Obviously it's a special week and he's always in your thoughts anyway, but does it make it a little more special when you come back here, and what are your memories of that week in 2002?
JUSTIN ROSE: Funny enough, it's a golf course I don't really remember that well, having played it twice, in 2002 and 2009.

Yesterday, funny you should say that, I was out on the golf course and I kind of gazed off into the distance, there's some nice open views on this golf course, but with some wooded trees.

And I definitely have a memory. I think it's more from a photograph that I have of a friend who gave it to my mom. It's a picture of my dad under some of those trees on the back nine of the golf course, and it just has a title, "Happy Days". Obviously that was a fond memory and something that actually hit me yesterday.

You know, there's definitely inspiration I can draw from that, as well. Like you say, I do think about my dad a lot, especially when it comes to moments like this because these are moments he would have loved to have been a part of. Yeah, it's a nice source of energy for me this week.

Q. Along those same lines, 2014 Ryder Cup, are there any particular shots or memories you have of your performance at Gleneagles?
JUSTIN ROSE: I just think overall, I felt very comfortable with my game. I made some putts at Gleneagles. That was the key. I had a great week on the golf course, I think four points out of five. That's always a good week. But that only comes about through, one, a good partner. We were talking about pairing up strongly, so we'll see how that plays out this year.

But your role every single year is different. Sometimes it might be you're earning points and other years it might be you are lending your support in other ways.

A successful Ryder Cup campaign doesn't always have to be about how many points you put on the board. I think that's the team mentality. You need to do whatever is right for the team on the week. But from my own personal performance two years ago at Gleneagles, it was more about making putts that was my overriding memory.

Q. How do you think Arnie's death is going to affect the spirit of this Ryder Cup, and do you think it's going to inspire the Americans or was he enough of a universal figure that is going to kind of equally effect both teams?
JUSTIN ROSE: Well, he's certainly a universal figure. I hope he inspires this Ryder Cup to be all about good teamwork, fair play, good camaraderie amongst both teams, good fun, camaraderie amongst all the fans because that's what Arnie stood for. He was a people's person from what I could see. He would always stop for kids, autographs, he would sign. He would give his time, he would give himself to so many people.

He left the game of golf in such a great place from that point of view, and I hope that's what we all take out of The Ryder Cup, from his passing and how we can implement that into this Ryder Cup. He was such a gentleman, I feel, and he would love to see it continued to be played in that way.

Q. We don't know the pairings yet, but if you and Henrik were to be asked to lead out Team Europe together on Friday morning, do you think that's a responsibility that you both relish?
JUSTIN ROSE: Well, that's the responsibility we had I think at Gleneagles. I think we were first out. So I mean, that's an honor for any team, for any pairing, and sure, if that's the way it plays out, of course. I mean, there's going to be 12 guys and six pairings or four pairings that are going to say exactly the same thing.

So you know, we're still in the stages where we're tweaking pairings and thinking about strategy and how that might look, you know, and not being obvious about things and stuff like that. But absolutely, it would be a huge honor as it would for everybody on this team.

Q. Having four players in the team room that have won four of the big events this year, plus being the defending champion to The Ryder Cup, do you think you're the favorites?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I don't really buy into the favorite tag line and I certainly don't necessarily buy into the underdog tag line. I think it's just about getting to the first tee Friday prepared.

All the favorite and the underdog is just all, it's arbitrary. It's about -- I think we've got players who can step up and deliver, is what that tells me about the tournaments they have won. To win this week, you're going to have to step up and deliver, pretty simple.

Gives me a lot of confidence in my team. I don't look at us as six players who have played The Ryder Cup and six rookies. I look at us as a 12-man team and it's just about going out and playing good golf and that's what's going to take care of business obviously.

JOHN DEVER: Appreciate your time and enjoy your week.

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