August 23, 2001
TIGER WOODS: I am feeling a little bit better, yeah. I've lost a few pounds. I have a great diet if you have want to go on one. I was kind of worried about my stamina for today, but I've been all right today. I hit the ball pretty good. Didn't really -- drive it in a whole lot of fairways, but at least I felt good over the ball. From there, I made a few putts here and there. Yeah, I was playing a lot better last year, but today was pretty close to how I played, how I usually have been playing over the last couple of years. Just struck the ball solid. Hit a lot of good putts that lipped out, and the putts I did make, they were right in the middle. Yeah, I got it going on the back nine. Made a couple good shots in there. I missed one short one on 11 -- I'm sorry, 12, from about, I don't know, four feet for birdie. But other than that, I hit the ball really well. I did put myself in trouble -- like myself on 17, I was able to salvage it with par.
Q. Despite the week you've had --
TIGER WOODS: I am. I'm pleased with the way I hit the ball. Like I told you guys last week on Sunday, I really struck the ball well. I mean, I hit -- really hit it -- I hit it good. I just didn't putt any good and today was very similar to that. Well, unfortunately, I got out of a restaurant that I went to and lost quite a bit of weight from last week's heat and then food poisoning on top of that. So I'm down quite a bit. But overall, I feel lighter. I was able to run and still get -- my time is a little bit quicker, which is nice. I might keep this weight, but I don't think so, though.
Q. It was food poisoning?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah.
TIGER WOODS: Hopefully it will be the same way for me. That's right, he did, didn't he? Nine pounds, nine days -- actually, eight days. Sorry.
TIGER WOODS: No. The heat from last week. Because you couldn't eat -- when I played, my times were about midday and that's about the worst time because you can't eat. Have a little cereal, whatever, small breakey and next thing you know you are having dinner. You don't have lunch; plus you are sweating all day.
Q. Is there a side to attack or score better here? Is the back easier to score?
TIGER WOODS: I think this golf course, the way it's set up right now, if you drive the ball well, you're going to have a lot of chances, just because the fairways are so soft and the balls are staying in the fairway; and they are perfect fairways. And the greens are soft, so you can be a little bit aggressive. And today, I felt like -- when I drove the ball in play, I was able to be a little bit more aggressive and go after some of these pins you normally don't go after, just because it is a little softer.
Q. Considering your finish last year --
TIGER WOODS: No, I did not.
Q. When you come to a venue that you play well on like Firestone, can that help get your game back in gear?
TIGER WOODS: No. I come in here with a lot of confidence, just because I hit the ball really well on Sunday. I've been working on a few things over the summer and it's starting to come together at the PGA and then it really came together on Sunday. I really hit it good. I didn't miss a shot -- sorry. Missed one shot on the third hole for the entire day. Playing 18 holes and you only miss one shot, you feel pretty good. Unfortunately, my practice sessions here haven't really been that long so I haven't had time to work on it. I knew if I could swing it like I did on Sunday, today, I would be all right, which I was able to do. Yeah, I would like to. This is such a great golf course. There's been a lot of history here. I think it's a golf course we need to keep playing, over and over again. I heard they want to go to a new course, but I think they ought to keep it here.
TIGER WOODS: They don't really understand the game.
Q. After four days -- did you worry --
TIGER WOODS: I'll be working out just like I normally do. So I'll be able to put on a pound or two through the week, and try to increase my eating, if I can, and try to make sure my protein is a little bit more than normal.
Q. What kind of course do you feel more comfortable on, here or Muirfield?
TIGER WOODS: Probably this one, actually. Why? Because the driving lanes are set up -- at Muirfield there are a few more humps and sometimes it is more shrouded. If you are missing the ball just a little bit, you can play here. But if you miss the ball quite a bit in the trees, you are not going to have much of as chance, but I was -- my misses today were just a little off the fairway, so I had open shots to the flags. 4, 8-iron, just a little 20-yard -- it landed about 20 yards and juiced it over there. I'm just working on posture, playing; execution of the rotation of my arm. It's the same thing I've been working on. I just haven't really been able to match everything up. I feel like I'm starting to put things together. Even when you are a little bit off, you have to put it back piece by piece. And it's going to take a little time, and you've just got to be patient with it, and it's starting to come back. It's not like that, because I totally redid my entire swing then. This is just maintenance work and it just got a little off and I had to go back to what got me.
Q. Are you putting well?
TIGER WOODS: I'm putting all right. Putting all right. I hit a lot of lips today. That week I was hitting my irons beautifully but I just wasn't getting my golf ball in play. That golf course, you have to drive it correctly and shape it off the tees to give yourself a chance at some of those hidden flags.
Q. Just having a chance to win --
TIGER WOODS: It is a little bit frustrating. You know, when you are trying to -- you also have to be realistic, too. You are not really firing on all cylinders and you are trying to get your swing back to where you know it can be, it takes a little time. You've got to be patient with it -- and practice sessions, you're going to have to take a little time. It's not going to happen overnight. It's not one of those things where you all of a sudden pick up a club and you're going to be hitting it for a long time. You've got to work at it. I've been putting it back piece by piece, and I'm finally starting to see some nice results.
Q. How irksome is it when a guy brings up the "S" word?
TIGER WOODS: You know, the people who -- a lot of times, people that say that really don't understand how fickle this game is. They think you can play well all the time. I wish that was the case. If that was the case, you would see a guy shooting 62s and 61s every day, but that's not the case. This game is very difficult and a lot of different things can happen. A lot of factors are involved. Even the best players in the world are going to go through phases where they just really are not playing as well.
Q. Does it make you simmer a little?
TIGER WOODS: It's frustrating, the fact that they don't really know the game. If they knew sports -- anybody who plays any sport is going to go through periods where it just doesn't work out for them. Whether it's other people outplaying you or you making your own mistake, whatever it may be, you are going to go through those periods. But hopefully you get through those periods quickly and get back on your game.
Q. Considering the standards you have set and how well you've played --
TIGER WOODS: I think I have played -- I think I've played pretty consistent, but I think a lot of that, too, is just if I managed my game well. When I'm not on, I'm not playing well, scrap it around with my short game or make a few putts here and there, I get it around. There are days when some of the guys out here see me hit the ball actually God awful, but I've got it around with my short game, and that's something that I can't harp on enough is that has bailed me out.
Q. Have you spoken to David Toms?
TIGER WOODS: I saw him on the putting green yesterday -- two days ago. I said hello, congratulations.
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