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August 14, 2019

Tiger Woods

Carmel, Indiana

Q. Tiger, welcome back to Medinah and the BMW Championship. If we can get some comments on being here this week.
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I'm excited to be back in Chicago. I mean, this is one of the places that I've thoroughly enjoyed playing over the years, and this was -- going back to it, this is the area that I made my first cut on the PGA TOUR. A long time ago, and I've had some really good memories and some wins here that have been pretty memorable for me.

Q. Where is your body today versus where you were a week ago?
TIGER WOODS: Oh, way better, yeah. It was nice to take those days off, and I had to just let it calm down and get a bunch of treatment on it, and it feels so much better. I played nine today, played the front nine, and played well, which was nice to see, nice to feel. Took the back nine off, chipped and putted quite a bit, and it feels like -- definitely doesn't feel like it did on Friday, that's for sure.

Q. Any idea what caused it?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, swinging. As I've said before, the forces have got to go somewhere, and unfortunately when I make any kind of tweaks and changes to my swing, it's like a new body part is aching. Unfortunately I can't play around the back like I used to, and unfortunately things flare up.

Q. Did you make significant changes after the Masters?
TIGER WOODS: I tried to make tweaks all year, trying to ease the stress off my back while I was still playing. Unfortunately I haven't really done a very good job of that, and when I have, I've hit the ball quite well. I was really excited about what I was doing at Liberty. I made some nice changes and obviously didn't feel very well on Thursday.

Q. You mentioned your roots here. How comfortable are you being here at this course and what was your take on it today?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I've had some good memories. The golf course is a lot bigger. It's a lot longer than I remember. They've certainly lengthened it since '99 and '06 and when we played here in '11. No. 14 is -- or is it 13? Yeah, 13, it's a big hole now, and they moved up 15. Now it's drivable. Before we were hitting 2-irons down there from the back tee. They've made a few tweaks here and there.

Joe was kind of reminding me where it was in '11 when we played here and some of the changes they've made since then.

Q. What's the latest in the Jackson Park South Shore plan?
TIGER WOODS: We're excited about it. The project is still continuing, still going forward. It's exciting to create something for the public, right there in President Obama's front yard or back yard, I don't know how you want to look at it. But it's an incredible piece of property. We're trying to do something that's unique and different and exciting for all the kids there that play. One of the things we've talked about is that all kids will play for free, and so that's something that we need to make happen.

Q. Could you also give an update on your design project, Big Cedar?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, we're excited about that. The grass is going down, and it just needs to -- had a great growing season this summer. This winter we were still laying more seed down there and more sod, and it should be fully maturing by give it another year or so.

Q. With Presidents Cup qualifying this week, are you still considering yourself as a potential captain's pick?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I'm hoping to put myself in the top eight. Right now I'm seeded 12th, and I'm trying like hell to try and make the team on my own, okay, just be part of the core group of guys. And I obviously have some work to do. Got to play well this week to make that happen. But if not, then it's going to come down to the top eight guys, myself and my vice captains about who are the next four slots, and whether that's me and three other guys or it's just four other guys, either way I'm going to Australia. It's just whether I'm going to be playing or not.

Q. What's going to be the biggest challenge for you this week body-wise and then game-wise?
TIGER WOODS: Well, body-wise it's the same. If it's not one thing, it's another. Things just pop up. That's been one of the biggest challenges coming back from last year. You saw I'm making tweaks and changes trying to play around this back and trying to be explosive and have enough rest time and training time. That's been the biggest challenge of it all. This week is no different. I'm trying to win this tournament just like anybody else in this field and trying to get to East Lake and trying to get to a place where a lot of things changed for me last year, and hopefully I can make that happen.

Q. Anything you're taking from Stricker in 2017 as a captain?
TIGER WOODS: Well, not just him. I've got Freddy on there. I was a part of his three teams, and one of the unique things, I had the clinching putt in all three matches. Having Fred there is going to be a big help. Zach being -- we're getting him ready for future captaincies down the road. He's on the Ryder Cup committee. And so I've got three guys -- not just Stricks, but Fred and Zach that I truly trust and that have been through it. Having Stricks there and me being a part of it from the other side of it and being a vice captain under Stricks, watching him go through it and some of the challenges he's had, but also it was a big help being a vice captain under Davis. That was a big eye-opener how big a responsibility it is being a captain of a U.S. Team.

Q. Is Stricks ready for this?
TIGER WOODS: No, he is. Stricks is ready. He's ready for not only this year but next year. He's been our guy. All the players out here know him, trust him, have the utmost respect for him, and when Stricks speaks, we all listen.

Q. Comment on having Sarai on the bag today. How cool is that?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, Sarai is awesome. Unfortunately she's a Duck and I don't hold that against her, but what she's done and earned, she's born and raised in Southern Cal like I was, and being part of the Evans Scholarship program, she wanted to go to school, and she's getting her degree and moving on to her master's, so I admire kids when they're given an opportunity like that and they make something of themselves like Sarai, and there's many more out here that are obviously caddying for all the guys.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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