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April 11, 2021

Webb Simpson

Augusta, Georgia, USA

Quick Quotes

Q. Three under par rounds, pretty good. The second round probably not exactly what you wanted, but overall a positive week?

WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, it went from striping it in the first round, hitting it terrible, doing everything bad in the second round, thinking horribly, made no putts. I mean, it was -- I think I made four or five birdies and shot 4 over, which I can't do. Yeah, so if it wasn't for the second round, I'd have had a chance to win today.

Q. Well, not to relive that, but why was that second round so bad?

WEBB SIMPSON: I've just been in a couple of bad swing habits, and it's hard in this game to always know what's the right step forward. My caddie Paul figured something out after the round on Saturday -- or on Friday, and a little thing he noticed and a little drill we did, it changed everything. I hit it completely different this weekend.

Q. And that was -- I mean, not to go into it, but that was more just full swing or putting?

WEBB SIMPSON: No, full swing. I haven't been hitting it that solid. I've been hitting some shots left. He noticed something in my golf swing, and we worked on it. All of a sudden, no left balls, and I started hitting it solid again.

Q. You felt great about the weekend?

WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I felt good about the weekend. Today, we joked, I hit a shot on 3 with a pitching wedge that I thought I had hit it really close to the hole and made double, ended up 15 yards short of where I thought it was going to land. Then 13, I land a lob wedge where I think it's going to bounce seven yards in the air. It spins back 30 feet. 14, I hit a pitching wedge. We catch a downwind gust. It goes over the green, and I make bogey. Then 15, I hit a hybrid right on that right tree where I was looking, and it goes 30 yards over the green.

All that happened, and I shot a couple under. So I felt really good about kind of hanging in there and getting a couple on the last three holes.

Q. Now the leaders have made the turn and everything. What can they expect to see? Winds, pins, everything, sort of coming down the stretch?

WEBB SIMPSON: Well, it seems like at Augusta every year, the winds die starting about now. If somehow it can stay windy, I think it's going to be really tough for the guys. But it's, I think, the easiest wind for Augusta, besides the 12th hole. I think this is the hardest wind for that hole, into and out of the right. Once they get through 12, it's easy sailing there. 14 is down, out of the right. 15, you want it into the wind. It's into wind. 17, I hit sand wedge. 18, I hit pitching wedge. So birdie holes coming in.

Q. What do you think of what Will has done this week, his first time? You're both Wake Forest guys.

WEBB SIMPSON: It's great to see. He's been playing phenomenal golf. I think I read he didn't have any status anywhere a year and a half ago, and he's trying to win the Masters. I think it's a testament for a lot of guys who don't have status just to see that it can be done with six months of really good play. I've heard he's been a great player for a long time. Not a big surprise to me.

Q. Is there something to be said for sort of not having Augusta National scar tissue? A lot is made of not being able to win the first time, but to show up and not everything?

WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, that can always be a benefit. I think he's got a big test this back nine with the wind, but an elite ball striker like he is -- and like I said, with the wind they're going to have on the back, he should be just fine.

Q. Webb, you've competed against Hideki in Presidents Cups and other places. What do you like most about his game?

WEBB SIMPSON: He doesn't hit many bad shots. He's always been a really good ball striker. He doesn't hit many loose shots. Even his bad ones where he's not happy with it is 20 feet for birdie. What a great competitor. He and I have been out to dinner a few times and really like playing with him. Love his caddie. They've got a good team.

Q. Can you have a conversation at dinner?

WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I mean, a little bit. We go through his translator Bob just to keep the conversation flowing a little, but he knows what I'm talking about.

Q. I feel like he kind of doesn't want to talk to reporters, so he fakes it. He actually speaks better English than we know?

WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I can't imagine going over to Japan and try to make sure I know what they're talking about, but Bob is great to have around. I think he's been over here -- Hideki has been over here for some ten years, nine years, and we know English is easy, but I've heard from everyone else it's the hardest language to learn because of all the different words we say and how fast we talk. So good for him. I hope he has a good day.

Q. He's a big guy. Give me a scouting report on him at the dinner table.

WEBB SIMPSON: It's always Asian. We always go get sushi. He loves sushi. When I played in the Dunlop Phoenix, he invited me to dinner, and the restaurant shut down for him. He ordered for me. Yeah, that was a little more like kind of the raw sushi, like the stuff was living, and then it was killed and we ate it right away.

Q. No California roll there?

WEBB SIMPSON: No, no shrimp tempura, but we had a good time.

Q. Can you put into words how big of a deal he is in Japan?

WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I think he's got a great demeanor about him. He seems to handle the pressure so well. I think it's a hard lifestyle living over here. I think his wife and kid are at home, and I know that's hard. I know he wants to be there more. He's chosen a career on the PGA TOUR, and he's got a humble attitude about him. I think over there he is a big star, but there's a humility to him that is pretty cool to see someone have that much attention on him. Yeah, he's handled it well. I mean, it's been a long career already.

Q. Is he as big there as Tiger?

WEBB SIMPSON: I don't know. I've only played once over there, and I definitely got to see how big he was when he was there, but I haven't had the chance -- I think it was cool to see him and Tiger battling it out at the ZOZO a couple years ago, but, yeah, I think he's got a whole country pulling for him right now.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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