November 3, 2000
LEE PATTERSON: Mr. Woods, we appreciate you spending some time with us. Very good position as we head into the weekend maybe just a couple thoughts about that.
TIGER WOODS: Well, I didn't exactly get off to the most ideal start today. But hung in there and put myself in position to make some putts and consequently I was able to give myself, as of right now, two off the lead and right back in the tournament.
LEE PATTERSON: Any questions?
Q. Once again this was a day where you were very, very patient didn't force it, played your game. Course management still the key?
TIGER WOODS: No doubt about it. There is a couple of times when I just hit some poor shots and that is what happened. I made a couple of bogeys. But just got to go out there and be as patient as possible on this type of golf course. It is set up very similar to a major championship. And, look at the scores out there, they are not that low. That is probably the trend of the week because the golf course is so fast and the pins are tucked that it is very difficult to get the ball close.
Q. You went to work pretty hard on the range yesterday. Was there something particularly bothering you or something you just needed to straighten out?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, same as always just hate getting stuck. (laughs) I say that everyday, every round, every week, you guys ask the same questions, the same answer. It is just one of my -- it is a fault I have and unfortunately several things that cause it and it is just you have got to analyze it make sure you know which one you are making on -- just so you can get out of it. Yesterday I was finally able to get the club down in front of me, hit some nice draws again up in the air, and today for most of the the day hit a lot of good shots a couple of squirly ones, but overall I felt pretty good over the ball.
Q. Hard to stay patient when you are 2-over through 6?
TIGER WOODS: It is really not because the golf course is so difficult that you know the guys aren't going to go that low and run away with it. So if you just keep hanging in there keep plodding along, give yourself a chance here and there, that I just figured I would be all right.
Q. When you get stuck and you are out there and you know you are getting stuck and you have done it a million times before, do you start to experiment with different things to try to get out of it while you are playing or do you just sort of scrape it around and then go to the range and try to work it out?
TIGER WOODS: Depends on how the day is. If I can't figure it out then I will go ahead and just kind of plod along, just try get it in the clubhouse best I can. Today I kind of knew what I was doing. I felt like I was -- I guess, how can I put it, either jumping off my right side too fast or over rotating too early and opening up, which means that the club will drop in behind me. And I will come in with no loft on it either hit a pull left or kind of a weak right if I just hang onto it. So I am just trying to slow down the hips get the arms down faster, which enabled me to get the right loft on it. And from there really hit some good shots.
Q. Will you talk a minute about your putting. These greens are true, very, very fast, you are just about that far from perfect on so many holes. Your thoughts.
TIGER WOODS: Just one of those days. As I said yesterday I was a yard off and today I was a couple of inches off. It was just -- I don't know, so close making a lot of putts out there. And even a chip, but you just -- that is the way it goes sometimes. Keep hanging on, keep plodding along and the key is to give yourself chances because the greens are so pure that if you roll the ball on the right line at the right pace you know it is already in.
Q. How important was that putt down hill, putt on 7 to get yourself going?
TIGER WOODS: I don't think it was the putt that got me going. Truly, I believe it was a shot on 6, 9-iron shot hitting it that poorly, that far left and then making bogey on, I mean, with no wind a 9-iron in my hand to hit that far left, and for some reason that really agitated me. Then the next tee shot on 7, I said okay just stay committed to what you have been working on all week, and I hit the best 3-wood I have hit in a while, just nice high draw out there, and I said just try to keep that same feeling all the way throughout the round, and I stuffed the 9-iron shot in there, just kind of skipped passed and just made the putt.
Q. Steve Flesch played well for two rounds with you last week. Chris Perry made a point of saying he needed to bring his A-game today. Do you suspect that players are bringing a little more focus (inaudible) when they play with you --
TIGER WOODS: I don't think they bring more focus when they are paired with me. I think that you have to bring more to the table now because the scores are getting so much lower collectively. The guys are just getting better. If you look at the scoring, I shot 23-under par last week and was out of it. (laughs) You don't find that too often. It is just -- that is just the way the Tour is changing. There is more good players now. Guys are going lower and deeper and there is more of them. So you have to bring more to the table.
Q. Do you suspect you will get players' best games because of what you have done and what you are able to do with your ranking?
TIGER WOODS: Sometimes it can be good and bad. I have got guys who have played great and I have got guys who have played terrible, so it depends which ones -- how they play.
Q. Do you use the fact that Chris Perry was paired with you, do you think he uses that to his advantage as inspiration?
TIGER WOODS: I don't know. It is hard to say. I think that is something you have to ask him. I know that we played last year in the final rounds in this championship and he played well. I don't -- I don't think I would inspire him, we would go out there and try to do our own business. We don't really talk a whole lot and he kind of does his thing and I kind of do my thing.
Q. The last time they played here I think Vijay shot 63 the first day and the lead score never got better than about 7-under par. And it seems like something similar is happening now. It is difficult to put two really good rounds back-to-back here or it is hard playing the last group and going low again?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I think what you find playing this golf course is that if you just hit a couple of bad drives, it is so easy to make bogey. It is very similar to a major championship and that -- it is fast, it is hard, if you hit the ball in the rough, yes, depends on the lie, sometimes you can get there, sometimes you can't. But even the lies that you can get to the green you can't stop it, which means that if you go back over the green or passed the pin you got downhill putts or chips, and that is not what you want to have. You want to try to have as many uphill putts as possible.
Q. Is there somebody who gets, seems to get more jacked up playing against you that you have noticed either by something he said or by the way he acts and grinds?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah. I think O'Meara, because we play so much golf together that we have -- I get excited playing with Marco, and we seem to play well every time we play with one another.
Q. Maybe a bad time to ask maybe -- I don't know, would 10 wins mean anything to you, it is a nice round number - Snead did it many, many years ago?
TIGER WOODS: 50.
Q. 50, thank you.
TIGER WOODS: I wasn't around then.
Q. Would it mean anything other than, that it is one more than 9?
TIGER WOODS: I guess any time you have a chance to go double digits, it is nice. And hopefully I can capitalize on an opportunity this week. I am in contention and it would be special. I mean, honestly just sit back and say that I won double digit events in one single season on our Tour it would be special.
Q. Would you be surprised if someone had said to you after the first round of the Nelson classic that that would be -- (inaudible)?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, because we had a major championship to play and anything can happen in Majors, especially at Pebble Beach in which it is exposed and it is pretty windy there, and as well as in the British Open, St. Andrews can happen, it can blow 40, 50 miles an hour. This year if you look at it collectively for the Majors I think we got one of the luckiest breaks as far as weather, we had one bad day on Saturday at The Masters. One bad day at Pebble Beach on Saturday, and that was it. The rest of the days were great and wasn't -- wind never really blew.
Q. Are you impressed with that?
TIGER WOODS: On that stat?
TIGER WOODS: I think I am more impressed with the stat that I was able to play only one round in the Majors over par. That means more to me.
Q. Can you look ahead to tomorrow, what is the game plan barring the same weather?
TIGER WOODS: I don't know. If the wind blows tomorrow, which I heard it could be a front coming through which it could start blowing which means that it will -- it is going to be a test. Because today like for instance on the second hole, I throw up grass, the balloon up above showing downwind, it is showing into wind on the ground, the water ahead of us showing into the wind, okay, pull out the 7, change, all of a sudden it goes straight down again I hit 8. The wind can swirl around here. It is going to be a test, especially on the back nine because you get in those trees it is hard to really trust the wind because it can get down there and do a whole bunch of different things.
Q. I couldn't help but notice last night on Sports Center they ran that shot on 5 about ten times. Do you have a good time in the hotel watching when you pull off shots like that? What is going through your mind when they are running that on TV?
TIGER WOODS: That one I got stuck on purpose. I flipped it.
Q. When you watch it on TV not when you are --
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, it is just one of those things, you practice on the range and you practice with your buddies, showing off, and say I will hit it around this flag and land it over here. That is why we do it, because you never know when you might need it.
Q. But do you have fun watching yourself on TV at night as they are running it on Sports Center?
TIGER WOODS: It is all right, I guess.
Q. Gotten tired of it?
TIGER WOODS: I know what I did. I just -- I have seen it a few times.
Q. What is the best shot you have hit all year?
TIGER WOODS: The best shot I have hit all year hands down the 3-wood at 14 at St. Andrews. I think it was Friday. Pin is all the way in the back left and wind is coming about, I don't know, about five to ten miles an hour off the left slightly into my face, and I had to rip a 3-wood and I absolutely made a perfect golf swing for me, club down in front, right loft, the crane in the distance, Stevie and I picked out this ball, never left the crane. It had slight draw to hold it against the wind, it was just a cool thing then, the ball is coming down, just as it starts coming down I hand the club to Stevie, see that crane, the ball lands right on the crane and kind of rolls up on the green. It was just -- I don't know, just the feel, to feel everything come together was just so cool.
Q. Do you have any idea how far you hit --
TIGER WOODS: Like 267, 270 to the front, somewhere around there.
Q. I presume you hit the green and had a short eagle putt?
TIGER WOODS: No, I had about a 40-footer that I left on the left edge of the cup. I knew it didn't break because I saw Andrew, when I was playing four, as I was going out had the same putt and he missed it left and I didn't trust it and played out there exactly to where he did and mine didn't break either.
Q. You will likely be paired with David tomorrow; is that the way it looks?
LEE PATTERSON: As we were coming in here.
TIGER WOODS: When I was on 18th green it looked like that was going to be the pairing.
Q. You haven't played with him since St. Andrews, have you?
TIGER WOODS: No.
Q. Anything special there that would be any more fun?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, it will fun to play with my partner. (laughs).
LEE PATTERSON: Thank you.
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