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January 8, 2005

Vijay Singh


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: We'd like to welcome our 54-hole leader to the 2005 Mercedes Championships. Vijay Singh, congratulations on a great first three rounds and you're also the winner of this week's inaugural 2005 CRESTOR Charity Challenge. Kapalua Maui Charities will receive $50,000 in your name, and also a charity of your choice will receive $50,000, so kind of a regular here, 54 holes. Start with some opening comments on a great week for you so far.

VIJAY SINGH: It was a disappointing 4-under, I'll say, but I'll still take it. There was not a lot of birdies out there. Probably one of the easier days of the first three. I played pretty solid. The putts would not go in today but still to under round, I'll take it. Still in the lead.

JOEL SCHUCHMANN: How big was the eagle on the 15?

VIJAY SINGH: I wasn't doing anything, actually and I wasn't hitting the ball badly at all. Just need to make putts. You know, Mike was kind of doing the same thing, he had a great putting round yesterday and could not make it so we could not kind of feed from each other, but like I said, I'm still in the lead and looking forward to tomorrow.

Q. You're obviously not rattled. We talked about this the other day. But when you see Ernie start off the way he did, what are you thinking?

VIJAY SINGH: Well, he's in front of me and I have to play the same hole. So I have as much chance of making birdies as he has. Nobody is going to birdie every hole. There's a lot of chances out there and today is only Saturday. So you're really not worried about -- it's exciting to see the leaderboard and him making three or four birdies. If you hit decent shots, you have your chances, as well. I just played my own game and wasn't really too bothered about who is making what. I watch leaderboards, but that doesn't mean it bothers me.

Q. What about the chance for bad weather tomorrow, does that change your game or your approach?

VIJAY SINGH: Well, I've got to show up tomorrow and see what the wind is doing first. They say it's supposed to come at 2 o'clock. We'll be well done by then. Hopefully we'll play in fair weather.

Q. Can you talk about the eagle on 15, what you hit?

VIJAY SINGH: I had a perfect yardage. I had 230 yards to the front half of the green and I just hit my 5-wood right there. Pin was tucked to the right side so you could actually be very aggressive with the shot and not worry about going left. It just came out absolutely perfect. Could not get any better.

Q. How far was the putt?

VIJAY SINGH: About seven feet maybe, six, seven feet.

Q. How do you feel about playing three balls tomorrow?

VIJAY SINGH: I guess it's okay. It will be different momentum from the first two days, we played two balls each, so we do that every week anyway, starting next week. I like the guys I'm playing with, they are fun guys to play with. You just go out there and just play your own game. The pace will be a little slower, but we'll get used to it.

Q. Does change of schedule change your routine at all tonight and obviously tomorrow morning? Does it change your approach?

VIJAY SINGH: Going to show up in the gym about 4:30 now instead of 9:30. I don't know, you just have to prepare a little earlier. You know, go to bed a little earlier and just make sure that you're ready when you get up tomorrow morning.

Q. It might not be open at 4:30. You might need a special key.

VIJAY SINGH: I think we can arrange that. (Laughter.)

Q. How much time do you usually allot after your workout between then and when you want to go out on the course?

VIJAY SINGH: I like to be at the golf course doing my putting routine about an hour and a half before. So about three hours before. I do a pretty good workout, it's almost an hour. So if I get done two hours before that, depending on how far you're staying away from the golf course. If I can get to the golf course -- if I have to eat here, then probably two hours, but an hour and a half.

Q. You could probably win pulling your bag and a cart, but you're changing caddies. What's your thought on the caddie change? Will it have any effect at all, do you think?

VIJAY SINGH: You know, sometimes, like Joey is caddying for me this week. But with him, gives me a lot better field of where I need to hit it on the greens and where the pin is. At times when you do that, you get more focused on pin placements, where the trouble is, where you've got to hit it, but also it's a hassle, running around and doing your own yardages. I kind of get tired of it after two weeks, that's why I'm getting my own caddie back.

Q. And then Paul versus Dave, how is that going to work?

VIJAY SINGH: I think it's okay. I had a good talk with Paul. He's pretty keen. He's a very good worker. It's good that I can work with him at home. He lives not far away from my house as well. So when I'm at home, he can work with me as well.

But I'm looking forward to a little change and we'll see what happens.

JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Vijay Singh, thanks a lot.

End of FastScripts.

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