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March 16, 2006

Sergio Garcia


JOE CHEMYCZ: We welcome Sergio Garcia, a 4 under par 68 today. Sergio, a lot of guys talking this week about the difficulty of the rough and the premium on hitting fairways, just talk about conditions and how that matched up with you?

SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, definitely. I mean, the rough this week, although it's not really that high, it's really thick and the ball seems to nestle down pretty much every single time. You know, you've got to get lucky out there because if you hit it on the downgrain patch, you can get some sort of shot but into the grain, usually you're pretty much done.

So I played okay today. I missed a couple drives here and there, which I usually don't do, and then unfortunately 3 putted the last. It was pretty good. I think that 68 is a good round in this course the way it's playing.

Q. You've had some pretty good runs here at this place over the years, about every other year been right in the mix, is it a good course for you or anything about it in particular that strikes your fancy?

SERGIO GARCIA: I guess I enjoy it. I do like the golf course, I think that it's testing you all the time. You get a lot of holes out there that you get just a little glimpse and you make double. You have to be consistent and I did that well today. I had a couple good par saving putts, and. It was pretty good overall. I still got to work a little bit on some of those tee shots that I missed, but other than that, I felt pretty solid out there.

Q. The speed of the greens and the placement of the pins today, did they seem customary for this course for a starting round?

SERGIO GARCIA: There was some really good pins out there, no doubt about it. The greens are in really good shape. They are not that quick, yet. They are rolling nicely, though. And they seem to be a little bit inconsistent. You know, some are fairly firm, some are a little bit soft.

Overall, the golf course is in very good shape, and looking forward to three more days of the good weather like we've been having.

The golf course is going to get tougher.

Q. I would have thought one of you guys would have caved in on the hair thing by now. Are you just going to keep this on and on and on? And you've even added a facial element to this thing.

SERGIO GARCIA: No, I don't think that's in there. I don't know, I guess we're just going and we'll see who bends his arm first.

Q. Have you had any trim (inaudible) at all?

SERGIO GARCIA: No, I haven't. I don't have to lie anybody. I've never been a cheater, I'm not going to start being a cheater now. So I can say what I've done and if they believe me, I'm sure that's good. I'm sure Adam believes me

Q. You're sure Adam believes you?

SERGIO GARCIA: I talked to him on Tuesday and he was fine about it.

Q. You haven't been sneaking a snip?

SERGIO GARCIA: I haven't. I can bring my hairdresser. (Laughter.)

Q. We were talking to you on the West Coast about your game building up to Augusta, and now that you're getting closer and closer to it and it's only a few weeks away, how do you feel you are preparation wise getting ready?

SERGIO GARCIA: I've still got to improve. I feel like I'm getting better every week, but I've still got to keep improving. There's some things that I have to work on.

But it's getting there. You know, I had some good weeks and then I had a couple other weeks that weren't that great. But I think that it's starting to build up there and looking forward to it.

Q. How often do you get to do little tune ups with your dad over the course of the year; is it fairly frequent or not?

SERGIO GARCIA: Yes, it is. Back at home most of the times if he's not playing he's there, so we do practice together and things like that.

Q. At 4 under, do you feel like you've got pretty much what you wanted out of the round OR do you feel like you left some shots out there?

SERGIO GARCIA: I guess if you look at it, that's probably a pretty decent round. I did leave a couple shots there but I did save a couple good shots, too.

Overall, it's never nice finishing with a 3 putt on the last, but overall, I feel like it's pretty fair.

Q. If I'm not mistaken, will this be your eighth Masters? Was '99 your first?


Q. Can you believe that at your age, this will be your eighth Masters, and all of the things that you've been through in such a short time out here? Do you ever think about that?

SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I guess so. Yeah, that's what happens. You have to believe it.

Q. Do you feel like an old man in some ways out here with as much that has happened to you?

SERGIO GARCIA: I wouldn't put it that I way. (Laughter) I still don't have any gray hairs around me, so that's a good thing. It's been fun. I've enjoyed every bit of it and trying to improve every year, and, you know, I feel like I've been pretty successful. That's all you can try to do is keep getting better and better and see if things just keep coming along.

Q. You've won the Byron Nelson tournament once or twice already?


Q. Would it mean something special to collect Arnold's tournament to kind of go with that other one?

SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, that would be awesome. I won Colonial, too, and Byron Nelson's tournament. This will be great.

I've had two or three good chances here and I've just come up a little bit short. You know, hopefully I can have another two good rounds and put myself in a position to at least have a chance on Sunday.

Q. You said you expect the golf course to just get tougher and tougher, is that because you expect the greens to be faster, or are there any other reasons?

SERGIO GARCIA: I think a little bit of everything. I think the greens are just going to get firmer, they are going to get a bit faster. The fairways are going to get firm because they are quite soft at the moment, even though the weather has been really good.

I think just with the combination of all those things, the golf course is just going to get a bit more difficult, a lot more balls running into the rough through the fairways and things like that. And we'll see how everybody handles those things.

JOE CHEMYCZ: Thank you.

End of FastScripts.

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