June 8, 2022
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
St. George's Golf & Country Club
THE MODERATOR: Like to welcome Adam Hadwin to the interview room here at the RBC Canadian Open. Making your 11th start in the event, coming off a sixth place finish when it was last held in 2019 at Hamilton. But looking back I realize that you made your first Canadian Open start right here in 2010. So with that said just some thoughts on being back here and looking forward to teeing it up this week.
ADAM HADWIN: Very excited to be here. Obviously a lot of very good memories. First time playing the Canadian Open was here in 2010. I have the same caddie that I used in 2010, Craig Sinclair, club champion here at St. George's.
And, yeah, it's great to be back in Canada again, it's been a long time. Been a few years in the making here. So excited to get back in front of the Canadian fans on a great golf course.
THE MODERATOR: How much do you get to play out here kind of between tournaments? Do you play out here much?
ADAM HADWIN: No. I grew up out west, so.
THE MODERATOR: Well that would explain that. All right next topic. Four top 10s so far this year and you're coming off a top-20 finish last week at the Memorial. Some thoughts on how you're feeling on your game.
ADAM HADWIN: Game has been great. I think even that Zurich, Byron Nelson, PGA stretch I was still playing okay, just maybe did a few things that I wouldn't typically do during tournaments and kind of got ahead of myself maybe and just didn't kind of finish things off a little bit.
But I played some really good golf last week. Tough golf course at Muirfield Village. There's no let up in Jack, still, he wants to challenge us all week. It was nice to play some good golf on the weekend. I was kind of hanging in there before the hole-in-one on 16 and I was able to get to the weekend. And then I was very happy with my play.
So I think my game's in a great spot. Again, it's just kind of the standard stuff, staying patient, keeping things in front of me and just kind of taking what the golf course gives me.
THE MODERATOR: We'll take some questions.
Q. Obviously tomorrow and Friday you're going to be in the only all-Canadian trio. How exciting is it to play with two guys you know pretty well?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, it it's pretty cool. It brought a smile to my face when I saw the text and the tee times. Mike has been an incredible ambassador for the game of golf in Canada and growing the game and so to kind of share the next couple days with him as he continues to get his form back as well and his good play on the Champions Tour. And then obviously Mackenzie has had, played some really good golf these last few years and continues to be one of the stars for Canadian golf. So it's an exciting pairing and we're ahead of a couple big powerhouse pairings behind us as well.
Q. Given that, what do you expect the crowds are going to be like, given three Canadians together and then those powerhouse parings you were mentioning?
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, I imagine -- we'll see what the weather holds for us a little bit. It is an early start there at 7 a.m. off the 9th. But I imagine come Friday afternoon it will be pretty loud.
I haven't played the back side yet, but I hear the way the stands are set up it's very, very close to play. So I imagine it will get very loud Friday afternoon for sort of that hour, hour and a half when our groups kind of roll through. So it will be exciting.
Q. 12 years ago you made quite an impression locally, nationally. Number one, can you believe it's been a dozen years and number two, can you just give us some perspective where you've come as a player and a person, there's been a win, shot 59, I think a few other things.
ADAM HADWIN: Yeah, it's pretty crazy to think that I'm that old already. I was at a RBC outing yesterday and Bob was asking us about 2010 and St. George's and I quickly realized I was the only one that was around in 2010 for St. George's.
So yeah, it was an incredible week. I got a lot of support, obviously I played some really good golf. I was young, I was fresh, this was all new and also exciting for me. Not that it's not still exciting for me, but, yeah, I mean, I've come a long way in 12 years.
I feel like these last eight years on TOUR I've grown immensely and learned so much about myself and my game. And I mean, good to good, I don't know how much I'm better than from what I was, but certainly my bad is way better than it used to be.
Q. Just as a way of follow-up, I know that a lot of things have to fall into place to become a PGA TOUR regular and a winner, but would you be here right now if it would have happened, if it didn't go as well as it did in 2010 or it would have been a different journey?
ADAM HADWIN: You never know. I wouldn't say, I wouldn't think that the one event would have defined sort of my climb to where I'm at now. It was still a slow, steady progression, right? I mean, I didn't immediately jump into TOUR status just from the one event, I still had another year on the Canadian TOUR and sort of progressed. I think I played, 2010 I played one event, in 2011 I played five events. So the slow, steady progression of Canadian TOUR, up to WEB.COM, Korn Ferry TOUR, and now PGA, I think every sort of step has just sort of prepared me. But it was a fun little intro to what PGA TOUR golf would be like.
Q. I understand you're now in the field for the U.S. Open.
ADAM HADWIN: I got the call this morning. So that's pretty cool. Exciting.
Q. Obviously a few more demands on your time this week. How do you prepare for this week? Is it comparable to a major for you?
ADAM HADWIN: I mean, yeah, I would have to think so. Just with the increased demand and having to be smarter with your time and your energy and certainly the way the Canadian fans want to see a Canadian do well. This is our, you know, fifth, sixth major. You include THE PLAYERS in there as well.
So this is an event that I think any Canadian has circled on their calendar as an important one to do well at, if not win. We all come here with the idea of doing that and that's the goal this week, play as well as I can in front of the town fans.
Q. Did you notice much difference in the golf course out there today than 12 years ago? Anything in particular that you noticed that was different?
ADAM HADWIN: If I'm being completely honest with you I don't really remember much from last week, so, yeah, trying to go back 12 years now. Just because it's a golf course that we don't see regularly.
So I know they changed the bunkering, I know they softened some of the greens to increase some pin locations. There's a couple of the aesthetics part of it.
I do remember the shape of 3, the downhill par-3, but I don't remember any sort of like specifics of what the green was like or anything like that. But I haven't seen the back nine yet so maybe some of that will bring back some memories.
Q. So that was my softball. My second question is, I mean obviously there's another event going on on the other side of the world this week. I'm curious what your thoughts are on that series starting this week and taking attention away from this historic championship which is obviously a lot pent-up excitement after the last two years.
ADAM HADWIN: From a player in the Canadian Open and as a Canadian it's obviously disappointing that this championship may not get the attention and time that it deserves and coming back from three years, two years off now. I think that everybody involved with this event, maybe outside of media who probably has to cover some of the stuff going on in London, from the volunteers to the fans to the players participating, I think we're all focused on this event and making it as good a championship as possible.
The city of Toronto I'm sure is really excited to have the event back. So all of that focus, outside of media, is still here and still on making this event as good as possible and certainly once we all tee it up that's going to be our main focus as well.
Q. This is the 111th, it's a National Open. Do your peers, do you think that they care as much about National Opens and as maybe some players in the past? I know Rory has. Do you think your peers care as much about things like tradition and the National Open as maybe you do or they should?
ADAM HADWIN: I think a lot of players maybe don't get into the sort of the thinking behind some of that initially. For a lot of -- I mean it's sort of, it's very easy to get caught up in it being another week. Obviously it's easy for me for it not to be another week, but for the general player on the PGA TOUR it's, well, I played last week, I come here, I get ready to play, I do my best and I leave and I go to the next week.
But I think if you have the opportunity to look at the tradition and the history and the players who have won here and guys who continue to come and play and I think players would sort of appreciate that probably a little bit more if they got into it. I think it's just a question of they just don't really sort of go down that road because, depending upon how many weeks in a row you played, it just kind of all slogs together a little bit.
But with RBC and Golf Canada and the job that they have done of creating a stout field, I think that's only going to enhance players' perception of it and we continue to come to courses like St. George's and that's going to increase I think the way players see the event as well.
Q. Along that line, the spirit of competition that's going to be here today is probably different than the tournament in England. Is that what you would see as one of the big differences between life on the PGA TOUR and life on a different tour would be the sport, the spirit of competition?
ADAM HADWIN: It's hard for me to speak on what it feels like over there. Obviously I haven't been offered money and I'm not over there right now. There is a sense, I'm sure from a lot of guys of there is a feeling of we've earned this and we earn every dime that we play for and there's no guarantees.
That's obviously been talked about a lot over the last little bit, last year or so of, should there be some guarantees out here. And I'm not going to jump into whether there should or not, but yeah, I mean, we play week-in week-out against the best players in the world. This TOUR has the best fields in the world consistently and any time you play well you feel like you've earned something out here.
So it continues to be the best place to play and I think that's why you see most of the top players still here.
THE MODERATOR: All right, Adam, thank you.
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