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June 16, 2005

Tiger Woods


Q. You looked like you were moving a little gingerly?

TIGER WOODS: I'm hungry as hell. I'm starving.

Q. Nothing wrong with

TIGER WOODS: No, no, just old age. Come on, man. (Laughter.)

Q. You had an okay start?

TIGER WOODS: Very good. Anytime you shoot even par in The Open you ought to feel pretty good. And especially this one. Four rounds of this, it's looking pretty good.

Q. Tiger, nice way to start off.

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I lost my drive there on the right on 10. I flew it up there and pitched it up there and made a nice putt, which was nice and just tried to be as patient as possible. The golf course is not playing easy. The wind is all over the place out there. And you try and guess right and time it right and hopefully you execute the shot for the wind that's out there. But it's all over the place.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Tell me about it. Great break there, because I came out of my drive there, only place you can't miss that drive is left, especially that pin. I'm trying to hit some kind of low fade in the right bunker, so I can pitch up the green. I overcooked it big time. I caught the trees, came back out and the lie wasn't very good, so I'm trying to land the ball anywhere on the green, just let it tumble up to the hole, it came out soft.

Q. Are you happy with the way you drove it?

TIGER WOODS: No, I need to be more in the fairway. I kept spinning the ball today, I kept hitting those upshooters. I know what I'm doing, so I need to fix it.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Shinnecock on Sunday was all four days, probably, if they continue to leave the greens the way they are they put some water on, and we were spinning the ball back 20, 30 feet on the front nine until it dried out and there went that idea.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: No, just keep it fair, you know. This golf course, probably tests you more than any other.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: It's one of those masochistic things, isn't it? You're out there playing, and say yeah, we can do it, chip the ball and blade it over the green, and struggle trying to make pars and bogeys and doubles. It's kind of what U.S. Opens do, but especially this one. The closely mown areas, and on top of that they're not in very good shape. That's what makes for a very interesting time, especially for guys not playing well.

Q. Trying to stay on pace with Annika's Grand Slam?

TIGER WOODS: No, I have enough to worry about this week.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Correct. Without a doubt. You've got to go today I told Hank today starting out, anything even par or better is going to be just a great score at this event. If you shoot four days at even par or better, you're going to look awfully good.

Q. On the 6 fairway (inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Just stay patient as possible. Granted I didn't drive it as well as I wanted to. I didn't hit my irons as precisely as I needed to, either, I felt like I didn't make a lot of putts. But I just kept hanging in there, just kept grinding. It's okay to make a par, it's fine to make a par. If you dump it up 30, 40, feet, lay it up and move on to the next hole. You know that if you do that for 72 straight holes you're looking pretty good.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: No, there's always going to be guys under par. Olin Browne is a great story, as you probably already know. Actually it's pretty cool to see him up there.

Q. Can you go over your round today?

TIGER WOODS: I birdied 10, driver, 3 wood and pitched up to about ten feet, made it.

Bogeyed 15, I hit a 5 iron short of the green, and chipped it up about 6 feet and missed it.

16, I drove it in the right rough, hit it in the front right bunker, blasted it up to about 25 feet and 2 putted.

I birdied 4. I hit driver in the rough, hit a 6 iron in the front right bunker, blasted up to about a foot?

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: You haven't heard, yet?

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I mean it's just the way from the thing about packing it in after the first one, and then all of a sudden give it nine more and then finish the way he did. If he finishes birdie, birdie, birdie, he's in the playoff.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Without a doubt. The greens will be drier. The golf course will be faster, though. You hit the ball in the fairway there, the ball is running 40, 50, 60 yards on some holes. So it's going to be harder to position your shots. The wind is kicking up right now, and it's supposed to be like this for the rest of the week. So it's going to be very difficult for the guys in the afternoon.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: I tell you what, Steve and I were talking about this today. I'm glad you mentioned it, because there's no rules out here. Think about it, who is going to hole in one off the sides of these greens. At Augusta you hear eagle roars, you hear the big putts being made. Out here guys are just trying to make pars. That's the nature of this golf course. We heard one roar today and that was Chris holed out on 2. Other than that you didn't hear anything.

Q. (Inaudible.) Do you relish the grinding nature of The Open?

TIGER WOODS: I relish it anytime we get an opportunity to play a golf course like that. You get a reward for shooting a round in the '60s. Nowadays most of the time on Tour, if you shoot high '60s, you usually get lapped. I don't think that's fun to play in tournaments like that. This is a lot more fun. Where you shoot well in the '60s you move up the board and you're going to move up the board fast. And that's how major championships are, and that's why I think all of us enjoy playing them.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Correct, yeah. He has, for now. We said that last year for the first two days, and then Saturday was probably was as hard as you ever want to see it, and Sunday obviously it went too far. But hopefully it will be all four days like this.

Q. (Inaudible.)

TIGER WOODS: Not easy, not easy. 490 and it's a tough fairway to hit. And if you miss the fairway there, and obviously you can't really get the ball to the green. And if you do, if you're lucky enough to sneak one up there the pin is sitting on the left edge there. You locate a shot, and it was pretty good actually from the left rough, kind of off the edge. And I hit it a little too hard and rolled off the green and off the side.

Q. Did you and Chris talk about your Masters?

TIGER WOODS: We didn't say one word, not about that. We talked about how well he was putting. He had 23 putts out there. I mean, come on, that's impressive out here. And I felt good. I felt very much in control of my ball flight. I hit a good amount of fairways, a good amount of greens.

And today was a very satisfactory day. I felt if I could have three more days like this, I'm going to be close to where I need to be on Sunday.

End of FastScripts.

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