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February 26, 2003

Davis Love III


JOAN vT ALEXANDER: Thank you, Davis, for joining us for a few minutes. A great match today. You won 5 and 4. Why don't you make a couple of comments about your round, and we'll go into quick questions.

DAVIS LOVE III: Well, I played pretty well. Paul had a couple of bad holes and gave me a couple of holes, but I made some birdies on the first nine and got ahead. And we really -- we didn't tie a whole lot of holes until -- I think 11 was our first. We tied 11, and tied 12 with bogeys. And 13 with pars, and those were the only holes we halved. So it was a good up-and-down match, but I won the first three holes, and that made it a fairly comfortable day.

Q. Were they birdies on the first three holes?

DAVIS LOVE III: No, I parred -- I hit a good drive at 1, and then Paul hit it in the trees and then had some trouble. So I won the first hole with a par. And then I birdied 2 and 3. And he birdied 4. And he bogeyed 5 and I bogeyed 6. And he bogeyed 7, and it was back and forth.

Q. What were your best putts?

DAVIS LOVE III: I made about a 30-footer at 2, and a good up-and-down out of the bunker for birdie at 3, made about a 5-footer. And I made a real nice putt at 8, about a 45-footer. I was 3-up and he had missed the green, and I kind of pushed it, playing a little safe and then I made a real nice putt there. So --

Q. Do you get conservative when you get a big lead?

DAVIS LOVE III: Yeah, you tend to start hitting it out in the middle of the greens. They're putting the pins so close to the edge. When I looked at the pin at 8, all it takes is 10 feet left of the hole and you're in the deep rough. So I was playing a little conservative, then I hit it a little right. And I got up in the wind and ended up, rather than having a 10- or 15-footer, I had a 40-footer. But fortunately, I made that putt. So I made two real nice putts on the front nine.

I drove the ball pretty good on the front, except for one bad drive on -- I'm having trouble with the holes now, because they're opposite, but on the little dogleg hole, 5, I guess -- 6.

Q. They're backwards.

DAVIS LOVE III: I can't remember the numbers of them. Anyway, when I play them every year. Yeah, 6, I hit it in the left rough off the tee. Other than that, I drove it real well. And if it weren't for him stuffing it at the 4th hole and winning that hole and -- I had a little problem at 9. We were trying to decide who was away, and I was holding my sand wedge in the bunker and I dropped it in the bunker and lost a hole penalty. I was looking like I was going to go 5-up. He had had a problem at 9, and I was just in the front bunker, so it looked like unless I did something crazy like drop my club in the bunker, I was going to win the hole.

Q. What hole was that?


Q. How did that happen?

DAVIS LOVE III: You know, there's no official in the matches the first day, they're kind of roving between. We had to decide who was away, and I just -- I was holding my club, here's where I am, and I dropped it. And then when I dropped it, I caught it right as it hit the sand.

Q. And it brushed the sand?

DAVIS LOVE III: And it was touching the sand when I caught it, basically. If I'd either been more coordinated or less coordinated, and just let it hit the sand or not drop it in the first place, I would have been okay. If I had dropped it and just let it lay there I would have been okay.

Q. That would not have been a penalty then?


Q. But the rule is because you made --

DAVIS LOVE III: Because I was -- I was touching the sand when the club was touching the sand.

JOAN vT ALEXANDER: What if the club had laid right next to the ball? Would you have to hit it there or would you have picked it up?

DAVIS LOVE III: If I had dropped it -- like, I could take two clubs in there, ethically, and say "I don't want to use this one," and I could lay it down, which doesn't make a whole lot of sense. I can take my whole bag in there and lay it down, but I can't drop my club and touch the sand when I catch it.

Q. Is that sort of the way you wanted to start this thing, with a pretty good, quick start, easy match, so to speak?

DAVIS LOVE III: You definitely want to win. You can't get very far unless you win. Every match is the big match, you know. You've got to keep moving on. But, yeah, it's nice to not be playing 18 even, and trying to win it. It's nice to get ahead and stay ahead. And that pretty much no matter what day it is, you like -- you like to get up and stay up, keep the guy -- because I'm sure that puts some pressure on Paul. He hit some tee shots, probably he doesn't normally hit. Our last hole he tried to hit driver, when probably he should have been hitting 3-wood, and he hit it too far and hit it in the creek.

Q. Who do you get tomorrow?

DAVIS LOVE III: Clark or Clarke, Darren Clarke.

Q. The one with the E?

DAVIS LOVE III: Yeah, Clarke.

Q. Could you talk about the conditions today with all the rain that they've gotten?

DAVIS LOVE III: Well, it was obviously soft and mushy, and the wind doesn't help. So into the wind holes played extremely long. And the lengthening of the course made it play extremely long coming back up, traditional is into the back nine it's always long. Those holes were very long. I hit a great drive at 9 and a 4-iron that came up short, and that's a pretty big hole. It played long. And the greens were perfect, though. I'm sure every day they'll get better, with less people on them. But they were pretty good today.

Q. If you had not been standing in the bunker and dropped it in there, would it have been a penalty?

DAVIS LOVE III: No, it was because I was touching the sand with my club. It doesn't matter where I stand. I basically stuck my club in the sand. I guess the reasoning is I could go in there every time and drop it and catch it and stick it in the sand and see how hard -- testing the conditions. And if I take it in there and just lay it on the top of the sand, I'm not really testing the conditions. Or if the caddy throws it to me and I drop it, I'm not holding it. I don't really see -- I don't poke it down in there to see how -- and it was not very far from the ball, and it was jabbed down in the sand.

Q. You didn't win that hole, right?

DAVIS LOVE III: No, he was -- I was an easy bunker shot and he was a tough chip from the rough. He had to get up-and-down for bogey. And I had to get up-and-down for par. So it was looking like I might win the hole.

End of FastScripts....

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