June 15, 1997
Q. Did you finally get the back?
TIGER WOODS: I'm glad the suffering is over. That course wore
me out. I hit some good shots, and I hit some bad shots. And
it took its toll on me, and it's taken a lot out of other players,
Q. Putting, would you like to have putted better?
TIGER WOODS: Oh, man, I putted horrible this week. My speed
was off, and when your speed is off on greens this fast with this
much slope, your line's going to be off and fluctuating. And,
I had a tough time hitting my line because my speed was bad.
And I just need to work on my mechanics and hopefully a better
Q. Was it tough to get into the mind-set that they weren't
holes like Augusta where you knew you could get to a par 5 in
two and 2-putt for a birdie?
TIGER WOODS: No, no. It's a typical U.S. Open. You know that
you're going to go out there and face holes where you're going
to have a good tee shot and a good second shot. You have to hit
two good shots in a row. Not like a par 5, where I can kind
of cheat with a driver and an iron. But, on a par 4 out here,
it is good.
Q. After the second day, did you feel like you were back
in this, and when did you feel it slipped away, if there's a hole
or a shot you can put your finger on?
TIGER WOODS: It was yesterday when I 3-putted three times.
That hurt, because at the time, I was even par after 11. And
I bogeyed 12, but that can happen. I just hit a bad shot. But,
3-putting three times, that's kind of uncalled for. And if I
could have taken those away, I would have finished at 1-over,
and I would have been right there in it.
Q. They say golf is a humbling game. Has this course humbled
TIGER WOODS: It humbled me. It humbled me big time, and that's
just the way it is. In a U.S. Open, it's going to humble you
whether you want it to or not because the demands of a U.S. Open
are so tough and are so strenuous that you're going to get worn
Q. Coupled with the pressure of a potential grand slam,
was that a factor?
TIGER WOODS: No. I didn't care about the grand slam, because
I'd have to win not only this week but two more times. And, you've
got to take it one step at a time and one round at a time. And
I tried to do that this week, and I just couldn't put it together
at the right time.
Q. Tiger, were you trying too hard to make something happen
out there this week?
TIGER WOODS: No. I didn't press at all, actually, because I
knew my game wasn't quite there. I wasn't hitting the ball as
well as I would liked to have. So, I couldn't attack. I had
to play more conservative and hopefully make some putts.
Q. Would you say that you enjoyed yourself out here overall?
TIGER WOODS: Overall, I had a good time. Unfortunately, I didn't
hit it good, I didn't putt well. But, overall, it was a good
week. I learned a lot, and I did have some fun.
Q. You couldn't attack like Augusta?
TIGER WOODS: No. Because par around the U.S. Open is good.
I'd love to have made 72 straight pars and see what my chances
were. That's just the way a U.S. Open is set up, and I knew that
going in. And I've known that going into the last two U.S. Opens,
and that's just the history of the U.S. Open.
Q. Was there a point early on today where you realized that
it wasn't going to be going the way you wanted?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, after I made a couple of 3-putts early, that
hurt, and I made three bogeys in a row. And, once I got to 7-over,
I was pretty much out of it.
Q. Did you learn any lessons that you'll take away from
here this week?
TIGER WOODS: I learned a lot. The details of it, I'm not going
to explain to you because I think that's private. I will tell
you this: I did make some mental mistakes out there that I will
rectify so I'll never make them again.
Q. What did Fuzzy joke with you about earlier when he came
and put his arm around you?
TIGER WOODS: I don't know.
Q. You don't remember?
TIGER WOODS: No.
Q. People talk about how the U.S. Open is a mental challenge.
You have to grind through it to win it. People say your strongest
attribute in your game is your mind. Was your great golf mind
put to its ultimate test?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, it was. Because I wasn't quite fair physically
with my game, my mind was tested, and my patience, my grit, every
kind of emotion you can conjure up was tested this week. And,
I think I held up pretty good. Could have held up better, and
I will make some adjustments and see what I learn and learn from
Q. What's next for you, Tiger?
TIGER WOODS: Next week.
Q. Was your group assessed a warning for slow play this
TIGER WOODS: Yes. We were on the clock for six holes, 8 through
Q. Does that affect you?
TIGER WOODS: Oh, yeah, it affects you a lot because you don't
have that much time to work on a shot. And you have some tough
shots out here, and if the wind ever gets swirly, you're going
to be backing off clubs, and you're going to get caught.
Q. Did you know if it was you on the clock or your partner?
TIGER WOODS: Both of us are on the clock. It doesn't matter.
The group is put on the clock.
Q. No. 14, you're in the rough. What did you hit to get
it within 2 feet?
TIGER WOODS: I hit a 6-iron. I drew a pretty good lie. The
rough was sparse, and I hit far enough left where I wasn't in
the thick stuff. And, hit a 6-iron, tried to cut it up there
196 to the hole, only had 168 to the front. So I just tried to
fly it the front and let it roll back there.
Q. 14 was frustrating to you the last two days.
TIGER WOODS: 14 wasn't that bad. It was 13. 13 is what killed
me. I made four straight bogeys there.
Q. Your impression of the fans in Washington, how they compare
with the other Tiger fanatics.
TIGER WOODS: They're about the same. They love to cheer and
love to scream.
Q. What about your thoughts about your father on Father's
Day? Was there anything special you wish you could have given
TIGER WOODS: It would have been nice if I could have won. But,
no matter what, I did say this morning: I do love you, Pop, and
whether I won or not, that will never change.
Q. Tiger, what is your preparation for the British Open?
When are you coming over? Are you going to Valderrama first?
TIGER WOODS: Yes, I'm going to Valderrama first.
Q. Will you go to Troon?
TIGER WOODS: I don't know.
Q. How long will you give yourself to prepare?
TIGER WOODS: For the British Open?
TIGER WOODS: Just that week.
Q. How long will you be at Valderrama?
TIGER WOODS: That's to be determined. Tom and I haven't talked
on the details of it yet. And once we do, I could -- I could
obviously tell you an answer.
Q. Were you aware of the President watching you on the 16th
TIGER WOODS: No.
Q. Chelsea was cheering for you.
TIGER WOODS: Was she? That's great. It's the only putt I made
all week. (Audience laughter.)
Q. Did you see him out there?
TIGER WOODS: No.
Q. Is that called focus?
TIGER WOODS: As anyone knows, when you have a job at hand, that's
the main focus. And, at the time, that was my putt. And, it
wasn't an easy putt because I had to play it about 3 feet outside
to the right and let it filter down there, so that took a lot
Q. Was that the hole where you kissed your putter?
TIGER WOODS: No. That was on 12. I made a putt there, which
was very lucky.
Q. How aggressively did you play this week?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I didn't play that aggressive, because physically,
I didn't have the skills to do it this week. My game wasn't on
this week, so I couldn't play as aggressive. So, I had to play
more toward the backside and just trust my putting. And, unfortunately,
my putting kind of bailed out on me this week. If I would have
putted well, I would have hung in there with my putting, I probably
would have shot anywhere near even par.
Q. Was any part of your game as sharp as it was at Augusta?
TIGER WOODS: I definitely can't say my bump-and-run, no, not
really. The only thing that would be comparable would be my mid-iron
play, because I have a lot of them this week. But, no, physically
I wasn't the same as I was at Augusta. Swing wasn't that good,
and definitely the putting wasn't that good.
Q. Were you happy with the game plan, keeping the driver
in the bag?
TIGER WOODS: I had to. You can't drive it out here, because
the further that you hit it, obviously the less margin you have
for error. And the fat part of the fairways are usually about
240 and 250, and that's usually about a 2-iron or 3-iron with
me, so that's what I was doing all week.
Q. If you had to give it a scale, was this your B-game,
TIGER WOODS: I'm doing -- I'm not doing that anymore. I told
you guys that at Colonial.
Q. How about the course? Can you rate that?
TIGER WOODS: The course is awfully tough. It's definitely the
toughest U.S. Open course I've ever played. But, then, I've only
played in three. That's not saying much. But this is a golf
course that you're going to see the guys striking the ball the
best. The guys who are hitting their short irons the best, and
you're happy if you can go out and make par. I played with Lehman
the first two days, and that's exactly what he was doing. He
missed a couple of key shots, hit some wedges up there to about
4 or 5 feet, and made those for pars, and that's what wins the
Q. Jack played in his 41st this year, possibly his last.
Did you guys get a chance to talk?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, we talked.
Q. Can you share what you said?
TIGER WOODS: We didn't talk about anything much: school, what
you doing, and how's life, some mechanics, how's your swing doing,
stuff like that.
Q. Can you envision playing 41 straight?
TIGER WOODS: Let's see. 38 more, huh? I possibly could. Who
Q. Are people's expectations of you too high? Should they
scale them back?
TIGER WOODS: I don't know. Honestly, I really don't know, because
I don't pay attention to them.
Q. Are you somewhat relieved to have this tournament over
TIGER WOODS: The suffering is over. This golf course beat me
up. Of course I'm glad it's over because this golf course was
awfully tough this week, and it's nice to get through it.
End of FastScripts.....