June 27, 1997
LEE PATTERSON: Sir, maybe a couple of thoughts about today and heading into the weekend.
GREG NORMAN: It is the weekend, isn't it?
LEE PATTERSON: Yes.
GREG NORMAN: Just, you know, I played very well today, tee-to-green was exceptionally good. And I got the job done. Right now I don't care what happens. We finished the day. I was a bit concerned if we would be coming out at 7 o'clock in the morning to have one, maybe two putts, so, I am glad we got a chance to finish the round today.
Q. How difficult is it to deal with all these stops and starts? How do you pass time or what do you do?
GREG NORMAN: Pretty much you just sit in the locker room with the guys and you shoot the breeze, whatever the subject comes up is what you make last for an hour. That subject will get worn out, then you bring up another subject. That is about all you do. Some guys watch the TV, a bit of golf on TV, but most of the guys sit down in groups and just shoot the bull.
Q. How important is this tournament in terms of righting yourself after the disappointing showing at the U.S. Open, before you go to the next major, The British, are you trying to regroup a little bit from the U.S. Open? How do you look at that?
GREG NORMAN: U.S. Open is past tense. This is present tense; that is all I focus on.
Q. What is your comments, pro and con, on this course, on the golf course?
GREG NORMAN: Like when I played on Tuesday, I was extremely impressed with it. The layout, very well balanced. A lot of good flow from the holes. They move from right-to-left, left-to-right, Par 5s are balanced really nicely. All and all, the layout is very good. Condition-wise is good. Fairways are excellent. And, the greens are fairly good. So, you know, I mean, I have nothing but praise for the place.
Q. What was the key to your scoring today and what did you do last week in the week off between the U.S. Open and this tournament?
GREG NORMAN: What did I do?
Q. Did you see David?
GREG NORMAN: I went to Tucson, San Francisco, Vail, just did a little trip around, and came in here. No, I didn't see David. I didn't do much practice. I knew there was nothing wrong with my game. Today, I just did a lot of the right things. Drove the ball well. Hit a lot of greens. Didn't make a lot of putts, but I made enough putts to shoot a good score.
Q. Obviously you played really well. Was it frustrating at all that you couldn't get one or two of those eagle putts to drop?
GREG NORMAN: Oh, yeah, you like to do those especially as good as I hit the 3-woods in there. But, you know, the best case -- the worse case scenario was the best case too. Four is your good score on those holes. So, you know, I was trying to make eagles. Wasn't like I was trying to miss them. But, I was more impressed with the 3-woods I hit in there.
Q. The crowd seemed sparser, little bit quieter the past years. Do you ever notice things like that, or does that affect your play at all?
GREG NORMAN: I haven't been here for twelve years, so I can't --
Q. Does a quiet crowd help you?
GREG NORMAN: Quiet crowd?
Q. Well --
GREG NORMAN: You must have been inside here all day, that is all I can say. (Laughter.)
Q. Didn't seem very boisterous.
GREG NORMAN: I don't know. I haven't been here for twelve years, so I can't comment on the crowd and the noise level.
Q. You mentioned earlier that it was mostly schedule that you couldn't get here. But Nick Price said the other day that he had mentioned to you - or maybe you had asked him about the course. Did any of that have any bearing on you coming, anything that Nick said to you? He always seemed to enjoy it.
GREG NORMAN: Yes and no. I called up Nick to ask him if it was worthwhile for me going out for a practice round. The question is: Is it a golf course that you need to play a couple of times to know. And, he just said the he liked the golf course. That didn't sway my decision whether to come here or not. This was on Monday when I saw him. So, you know, I felt like I needed to come in here for two-- unfortunately, I only had one anyway. But, I felt like I needed to come in here for two days. TPC courses, you normally have to spend a couple of times to go around them to see where they are going.
Q. How important would it be for you for a good result this week to pack up to take with you into Loch Lomond?
GREG NORMAN: It would be great. Yeah. Any good finish is a great finish. It would be great. What more can I say? I look forward to it. And hopefully it happens.
Q. How concerned were you Wednesday that you might not be able to play or what kind of miracle did they work on you in the fitness trailer?
GREG NORMAN: I wasn't that concerned. I knew come Wednesday night, after the second session with Ralph in the fitness trailer, I knew I would be fine come Thursday. And, it was just a matter of -- I just had a bit of a muscle pull. You just got to put your rib back into place, just way your muscle doesn't spasm. He did that. Once he did that, it was going to be okay as long as I didn't do anything on it the Wednesday night.
Q. Talk a little about more how you hit the 3-wood couple times. Your two playing partners opted to lay-up. It didn't affect your thinking at all. You still went with the 3-wood on 3.
GREG NORMAN: Well, I know I can hit my 3-wood 260 yards, so I had 2 -- I think about 248 and 251, so it is right inside my distance. So that -- if you feel good about the shot, you have got to play it. I don't pay attention to what the other guys do because they are in a total different situation than what I am. So, knowing the way I can hit my 3-wood, and knowing the way I was swinging, there wasn't any question about what I was going to do.
Q. What are some of the holes that you like the best on this course, some of the holes that you like the best that suit your game?
GREG NORMAN: Well, I don't think there is a weak hole out there. I really don't. I like the holes. Couple of holes that you got to be extremely careful on with your tee shot where you put the ball. But, other than that, like I said, it is a very well balanced golf course.
Q. You said you didn't think there was anything wrong with your game, so you didn't practice. Is it just a matter of mentally putting together tournament here, it is not your game that you needed working on?
GREG NORMAN: You always need to work on your game. I just knew in my head it wasn't -- my game wasn't as bad as what my scores were. Lots of times like that you, just look forward to getting out and playing. You know you are playing well and it will come around. It always does. The game of golf is a game of cycles like in any sport, in anything in life, you are going to have your ups and downs. When you feel the pendulum starting to swing, it feels good. When it goes the other way, it feels bad. So, you just want to be there when it is starting to feel good. If your game is right, like I said, I didn't think the hit the ball that bad the last couple of months. So it is just a matter of taking advantage of it when I am playing well.
Q. Changing topics, are you still asked about the Masters at every Tour stop?
GREG NORMAN: Well, you have increased the streak, I suppose.
Q. And, are you?
GREG NORMAN: You have increased the streak.
Q. Have you been asked about the Masters at every stop previous?
GREG NORMAN: You have increased the streak.
Q. I heard that.
GREG NORMAN: (laughs)
Q. Is it an advantage for you that you finished the second round?
GREG NORMAN: Bernie, it just depends on what they do today. There might be a good chance that I don't even play tomorrow because a lot of the guys -- I know a couple of guys in the locker room might only play one hole today. So it is just a matter of what gets done today and what the PGA TOUR officials' decisions are. I mean, we have gone into Monday before. They may send us into Monday again. So, irrespective, I am going to have either a very long day lying in bed watching movies or a very long day waiting to tee off at 4 o'clock in the afternoon. They could make us tee off two tee start. We may tee off on the back 9 first. Who knows, just get nine holes in, come back and play 27 holes on Sunday. There is a lot of different ways they can get the job done, depending on mother nature, of course.
LEE PATTERSON: Go over your birdies for me real quick.
GREG NORMAN: 3-wood pitching wedge on the second hole to about five feet. Driver 3-wood to about 28 feet. Driver 3-wood to about twelve feet. 3-wood, 7-iron to about six feet. 10th hole driver, 7-iron in the fringe and chipped it in. And 16, hit driver, 3-wood and chipped it to about two inches.
LEE PATTERSON: Anything else?
Q. Kenny Perry came in here yesterday and said he didn't feel after losing what he termed his Masters at the PGA last year, that if he knew he could ever be the same player, he intimated that he didn't know how you could possibly get over that either. That it had to affect you even though in the past you have said you are going to put it behind you. Do you think you are the same player or has it affected you at all?
GREG NORMAN: I am a better player, same player. It hasn't affected me, no.
LEE PATTERSON: Thank you, sir.
GREG NORMAN: Thank you.
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