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May 15, 2019

Laura Davies

Southern Pines, North Carolina

THE MODERATOR: We're here with our defending champion, Laura Davies. Thanks for being here. Laura won the 1987 U.S. Women's Open and of course last year's inaugural U.S. Senior Women's Open. What has the last year been like for you knowing you were the only name on this trophy?

LAURA DAVIES: Well, it wasn't quite a year, that's the only trouble. I only had the trophy about nine months. But it was an honor, and it was obviously a big thrill that week, played so well, and I got to take the trophy home and show it to friends and family, which was great, and back now -- well, probably about 10 months later trying to win it back again. But completely different prospect this year I think with the difference in the course.

THE MODERATOR: Talk a little bit about that. I know you've played some championships here before. You were out here in March, and you've had some time out here this week.

LAURA DAVIES: Yeah, it's completely different to Chicago. You can spray it a little bit around that golf course. Here you're going to be punished every single time you hit a bad shot, and hitting it into the greens is difficult because you can't go for the pins. We've already isolated a few pin positions we're not even going to attempt to go for because once you're short-sided, it's almost -- unless you hit an unbelievably good chip or a putt from off the edge. So it's going to be much more strategic. Can't be so aggressive. Par-5s are all reachable, definitely in the afternoon, possibly in the mornings. I've hit 2-irons into all of them, I think. But it's just a completely different test. The green structures are really difficult, hard to read putts. So I'm thinking level par would be a really good tournament.

Q. How do the golfers prepare now?
LAURA DAVIES: Well, it's such a long time -- plus the course has changed since the last time we were here. They've done so many changes or changed it back to how it was originally. And to be honest, I can't remember too well. It's a long time ago. I'm getting on with it now. I don't really even remember how I've done around this course, but I just know it's a good setup if you're playing really good golf, you can really prosper and get yourself away from the field. But I think anyone that can string four solid rounds together around here is playing ever so well.

Q. The first U.S. Women's Open to have been here since Peggy Kirk Bell passed away in 2016. What comes to mind when you think about her legacy and what she did for the game?
LAURA DAVIES: Oh, Mrs. Bell, she was amazing. And her family have carried everything on, obviously, and they're doing such a great job, and now she's going to be in the World Golf Hall of Fame this summer at Pebble, and yeah, she's one of the great names of women's golf. Always will be, and like I said, her family is carrying it on.

And this place is a testament to her career and her family, and they've done a great job, and they've welcomed us back this week, and then obviously the regular Women's Open is coming back here soon, too, and it's just a continuation of the great work she's done and what a great career she had all those years ago.

Q. Because of your win last year in Chicago, you'll play the U.S. Women's Open in Charleston this year. Talk a little bit about getting to play in that field.
LAURA DAVIES: Oh, yeah, great. I qualified two years ago, I think, for the Open, and I missed it last year, so to be in the Open is obviously just a great feeling to be back in it. I played in it for so many years, and one of my favorite tournaments. It tests every part of your game. Know nothing about the golf course we're going to apart from everyone says it's unbelievable, so should look forward to that in two weeks' time, and yeah, it was a real bonus.

Someone said I think you might get in the Open, and I had no idea. It probably would have put too much pressure on me last year if I had known that. But yeah, that's a massive bonus for anyone that wins. I'm assuming this week in someone wins they're going to get in?

Q. Yep.
LAURA DAVIES: Which that's great. That's a huge thing if someone wins it, gets a spot in two weeks, and probably the greatest championship we play.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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