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August 23, 2006

Paula Creamer


PAUL ROVNAK: Paula, thanks for coming in. This is your third year playing here. You played two years ago as an amateur and finished tied for second last year. You've had some great experience here on this course. Talk about coming back and we'll take questions.

PAULA CREAMER: I'm really excited to come back to this golf course. I played here, like you said, three times in the last three years. I feel really comfortable. I'm hitting the ball really well. My putting was very good today. And that's the main thing right now in my round, my putting, the lack of making putts, and today my confidence definitely went up.

PAUL ROVNAK: We'll take questions.

Q. Talk about the course itself. What do you like here? You played well here last year. Talk about it.

PAULA CREAMER: I don't know. It sets up well for my game. There are holes that are long. There are holes that you have really tricky greens that you have to hit really good iron shots. So there are big greens and small ones. You have to hit it in the right section. And I think that comes down to good iron shots.

One of my strengths is I hit a lot of greens and I hit in the right portions of it to have myself a good look at birdie. I think that's one of the main reasons why.

Q. Talk about your game right now and what you're most pleased with. What part of your game are you most pleased with?

PAULA CREAMER: I've been really working hard the last couple of weeks doing a lot of practicing with my putting. I think that's the difference between this year and last year, is I just haven't made quite as many putts. I think another thing is I made much more bogeys in the last couple months than I did last year. I'm making a lot of birdies, but just giving them away with the bogeys.

I've reevaluated a little of my course management out on the course and I think it's a learning experience. And I'm hitting the ball well, so we'll see what happens this week.

Q. It came so quickly for you last year. Was it inevitable that you would have this well, people think you're not having as good a year as you actually are. Money wise you're fine. But it's kind of like sophomore jinx.

PAULA CREAMER: Don't say that. It is, it's very difficult to come off of a year like I had last year. I won four times. That's pretty good as a professional. My expectations and my goals went through the roof after that. I think at the beginning of the year I definitely put a lot of pressure on myself. I don't think that I was I think I was more focusing on that than getting the ball around the golf course. That's something that you learn from. I can tell you now that my golf game is as good or just as good as it was last year, but I'm just making too many bogeys and mistakes.

Q. One of the story lines is how the veterans have kind of stepped up to the challenge posed by you and Morgan and Michelle and the younger players. Have you seen that in their games or, in your case at least, are you just not playing as well as you were last year to challenge them as well as you did?

PAULA CREAMER: I think it's a mixture of both. Obviously Karrie has been playing great. Juli has been playing well. Lorie Kane has been playing well. Sherri is playing well. Nobody wants to lose. They always want to be in the top and win tournaments. It's a new drive, a new passion. I think it's awesome. That pushes me. And if I push them, that's what you want out there on tour. You want a diverse group of people always in contention. I think it's good for the game.

Q. When Karrie was in here before, she had some problems with the condition of the golf course, saying that she couldn't believe it was as wet as it is in some spots considering how dry the summer has been. What is the condition of it compared to the last couple of years you've played here?

PAULA CREAMER: It's very wet. It's very wet. I would agree with Karrie on that, it is. I don't understand why they put so much water on it. I guess they're trying to save it. It's a great golf course and it deserves I think it can do better. But at the same time, it's the same for everybody. It makes it a little longer, which makes it tougher. And the greens, I think the green speeds are really good right now. They're rolling true. It's just that the fairways are wet.

Q. The first year when they played here, it wasn't soft, it was hard. The ball was rolling a lot. You say if it plays longer, it plays tougher. Would you rather see it softer and playing longer or rather have it in a situation where some balls run out of the fairways now and again?

PAULA CREAMER: These fairways are pretty big. If you miss a fairway you're missing it pretty wide. So I think the thing it more revolves around is hitting your approach shots to the green. If you have to think about your release and all that, there's so much work that goes on.

Like at the British Open, when you have a golf course like that that's firm, you have 25 numbers in your head. I think that's the difference between a wet golf course where you can just fly it at the flag and not think as much, which brings more people into the picture. Personally, I like tougher conditions.

Q. How are the greens holding?

PAULA CREAMER: They're holding pretty well. They're maybe a 10 yard release, which is not bad. It's such a good golf course. They have some rough out there, but it's just a little too wet. That's the only thing. The greens are good. Pin placements out here are always very difficult, which is another reason why you want more difficult surfaces.

PAUL ROVNAK: Thanks, Paula.

End of FastScripts.

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