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April 16, 2006

Jim Furyk


TODD BUDNICK: We welcome Jim Furyk, runner up here at the 2006 Verizon Heritage. Thank you for stopping by today.

A hard fought battle out there today and just a little short on your side.

JIM FURYK: Yeah. I played well. I really don't have anything to hang my head about. I hit one bad putt on the back nine on the 12th hole for par, I pushed a little bit. Other than that I'm still baffled by some of the reads and some of the breaks out there. The putt at 17 I misread. The putt at 18, could have been the best putt I hit all week. 15, burned the edge. 13, again, great putt that didn't go in for birdie. So I played my heart out on the way in from 13 in, I had probably 4 really good birdie putts and ended up playing 1 over par on the way in. I'm a little disappointed by that. But it had a lot to do with just not getting the ball to go into the hole.

Q. What did you learn about the putt on 18 after you putted it?

JIM FURYK: I'm sorry?

Q. What did you learn about the putt on 18 after you putted it?

JIM FURYK: It doesn't go in when you play on the right edge.

Q. What do you do?

JIM FURYK: I don't understand your question, I'm sorry.

Q. What is the proper read for that putt, is it the read? Was it the

JIM FURYK: I tried to hit it pretty much on the right edge. I felt like if I got the ball on the outside at the end it looked like it would go that way (indicating), watching Aaron's, it looked like it slid out right when it was going down there. I'm not sure, to be honest with you. If I played the ball out I'm not sure it would have gone in it. There was probably a place to put it that would have had it go in.

Q. What about the conditions on the green, was that what led to the misreads?

JIM FURYK: No, you just have days when the greens weren't any different. They were the same greens they firmed up on the weekend, but some days you have days where you hit some good putts and they go in, and other days they don't go in. I had one of those days right now where I really loved the putts I hit on 13, 17 and 18. 17 was a bad read. 13 burned the left edge and 18 burned the left edge. It happens. Again, I only hit I hit a few bad shots or bad swings today and putted like I wanted to and felt that I thought my way around the golf course pretty well. And it turned out being even par today, where I don't think I played any worse than I did yesterday, possibly even better than I played yesterday.

But yesterday added up to 68. That's part of golf. You have to learn to accept that and realize that some days you're going to score and get the ball in the hole and some days you're not. That's why I considered playing. If you play well, I don't consider hitting the ball great, hitting a lot of fairways, a lot of greens and shooting 71 playing good. I consider it's getting the ball in the hole. A lot of guys go out there and hit the ball well, and don't get it in the hole and that's not playing well. Today I didn't score well, I didn't play with, so I was getting the ball in the hole, but mechanically and mentally I felt it was good, it just wasn't to be.

Q. After Aaron flew the green, did that change your approach to the second shot?

JIM FURYK: He hit iron off the tee and I hit 3 wood. I don't think he hit his iron particularly the way he wanted to would be my guess. I heard him asking for it to go. My 3 wood was a touch left, probably ten yards left of where I wanted to, I was afraid it would run through and get to the other side. It didn't really change my shot didn't change at all.

I kind of learned from yesterday on how short it was playing into 18. The wind I don't know if the compass is wrong in our yardage book or what, the wind is surprisingly down on 18 compared to what it should be, as far as what the compass shows. It's easy to go ahead most of the day it was pretty much a west wind, maybe a west and a touch from the south. And my yardage book, a west wind would be going pretty much due right on 18, maybe a touch helping into the green, but every day it's played kind of like a southwest there instead of a west.

I don't know when they made our yardage book if their compass got jockeyed a little bit. It played surprisingly short. I had a pitching wedge in my hand. I wanted to be aggressive and knock it in there where I had a good birdie putt and put the heat back on him. I did. If I had knocked the putt in, I would have put more heat on it.

Q. With the pitching wedge in the air, you had a grunt?

JIM FURYK: I thought it was perfect when I hit it. I was asking for it to be good. I hit it how I wanted to and the shot was good as I could hit it. I would suspect there wasn't too many good opportunities for birdie on 18 today because the way the hole played. I was in a situation where I had to be aggressive and had to take it at the flag and I hit a good shot.

Q. Talk about the experience of it out there. You get down, you fight back to take the lead, then Aaron comes back and he grabs the lead. It was good, dramatic golf out there for the fans, for people watching on TV. It seems like it was a fun experience?

JIM FURYK: Yeah, I think anytime I look at it from a totally different perspective than anyone else in the room. I'm out there trying to win a golf tournament. If I stepped out of that position it was probably a heck of a golf tournament to watch, because we kept flipping back and forth. Sitting here now I really couldn't care about that. I know it's great to write about, it's great to watch.

Aaron and I were focused on trying to win the golf tournament and trying to play as well as we can. Anytime, from my perspective, anytime you're under the gun and you can test your game under those situations where I know I've got to make birdie, the front left pin, the wind is chipping to the right, and it's a difficult pin to get to, you're standing out on 18 with a wedge in your hand and a chance to win a golf tournament. That's why we work hard and practice. It's fun to pull those shots off.

I would have liked to have done the same thing with the putt. And it didn't happen. But that's why we're here. It's no fun getting up Sunday morning and being one of the first groups off and trying to figure out what flight you can catch to get home to make it to the next tournament. It's nice to be here late and have an opportunity to win.

Q. Talk about the way both of you played 17 today.

JIM FURYK: I can talk about how I played 17. He hit it right, he hit a chip up short. His third shot was kind of a hard lip out there, caught the left side of the hole. But I don't know what clubs he hit or I don't know what shots he was trying to hit.

I had a 5 iron in my hand, the pin was 184 and the wind was in our face pretty hard. I thought it would have been a touch from the left to the right, but mostly hitting us hard in the face. And I was trying to hit a shot that would land a good 8, 9 yards short of the pin, but hit a little 5 iron. And I just, in trying to keep it down, I turned it over a little bit and hit it quite low, but I drew it a little bit, otherwise I think it would have been a decent shot. But it just got turned over. The bunker shot I left myself, I think I should have been able to hit that ball up and down. I had a decent lie. It came out fast on me, because of the wind direction being down and to the right, it was tough to put any spin on that ball, and it got away from me, about 10, 12 feet past the pin. I expected my putt to break left pretty good and it did not. It remained relatively straight. Even hitting it quite easy the ball went about six inches past the cup.

It was a good aggressive tee shot. The bunker shot was hit okay. I think I should have been able to hit a little closer. It was hit crisply, but it didn't spin at all, and I hit it a touch farther than I wanted to. I hit the putt where I wanted to, but it didn't go in. That was an opportunity for me to get even there. And I had another opportunity on 18 to really put a lot of pressure on him. I didn't know what he was going to do with his pitch shot. When I saw he got it inside mine, but still was probably a good eight feet. He had a tough putt to win the tournament. I knew I could put heat on him. You have to he had to step up and eventually lineup one of those putts in. I put a lot of pressure on him and I wasn't able to do it.

Q. How impressed are you that a young player looking for his first Tour win could hang tough like that, especially with a difficult up and down on 18?

JIM FURYK: Well, I'm not surprised. I played with him all day yesterday. He played quite well. He got the ball up and down and scored very well yesterday. His putting and his chipping was fantastic. Today I think he hit the ball better today and knocked some good putts in and he played well. I didn't expect him to go out and shoot 80 or anything like that. I expected him to play well today and I wanted to go out and play better.

Q. Is he somebody that you think, yourself, and maybe some of the other top guys on Tour thought would go home before this?

JIM FURYK: That's not my job. Again, I really don't I never the question I probably dread the most when I talk to someone from the media, I hate the word media, it sounds like the word "media," who do you think the best young player is, or I keep hearing a guy that we thought would have won by now and didn't. I just as a player, you don't think that way. You go out and you try to get better and you try to win. As a professional golfer that's just something that would never enter my mind. Maybe at the end of someone's career you would look back and say, that guy really hit it good, he really had a great game. I'm surprised he didn't win more tournaments in his career. But when I kid comes out and he's 21, I think everyone expects him to be a world beater. Everyone is looking for the next Tiger Woods, and there's not too many of those.

Q. How about yourself? This is another good finish for you here. Do you get the sense that you're eventually going to win one here?

JIM FURYK: I guess ten years from now we'll figure that out. I'd like to. I really enjoy this course. I look forward to coming here. It's a place that I've always targeted that I felt was suited to my game and I had a good opportunity to win here. This is obviously the best opportunity. I finished second last year, but it was a little back, because Peter and Darren were so far ahead. But it was the best opportunity I had. I've had I've actually had two or three opportunities coming down the stretch where I birdie here or there. Yeah, it's one of those if I had to make a list of ten courses it would be one of them, definitely.

Q. Would you talk about the putt on 13, it seemed like that would have been one of the birdies here or there?

JIM FURYK: We both missed our putts on 13. We both hit good wedge shots. I had about an 8 to 10 footer, about 8 feet downhill. I was thinking pretty much right edge, my caddie thought right edge. I swear I hit it right edge and even a touch, I hit it two feet by. It wasn't moving easy and I burned the left edge, it broke a little bit more than we thought. And Aaron had a putt right there a little inside, probably a 6 footer that I think he thought he had a good putt and he lipped it out on the right side. The morale of that story, not all good putts go in, because we both made good strokes.

I birdied 2, driver, 3 iron over the green, hit a pitch shot to about a foot and a half.

Bogeyed 4, I got an iron shot, the wind was in to the left, got an iron shot into the wind and definitely a hole you want to play right of the pin, I hit it over the top of the pin, maybe a touch left, it skipped over the green and down, against the railroad tie. So I was in the hazard, took a drop, pitched it up to four feet and made a bogey.

Birdied 5, I hit a 3 wood, one of my poorer swings today, out to the right, kind of short and hit the lip with a 6 iron. Hit a sand wedge about six feet and made that for birdie.

Birdied 10 with a driver, I believe an 8 iron and I made a long putt there, I made about a 35 footer for birdie. It was downgrain putt that you knew would be smooth and get to the hole.

No. 12 was a bogey. I hit a poor drive there to the left. I hit a tree it was almost an identical line I hit the ball yesterday, and I ended up making birdie off that drive. This one hit a tree and dropped down and left me a 3 iron into the green instead of a 7 or 8 iron. I hit the 3 iron in the front bunker, left myself a relatively benign bunker shot that I hit to about four or five feet. And that was probably my only bad stroke on the backside. I pushed the putt and missed it on the right side.

17, made bogey there. We talked about that one.

TODD BUDNICK: Thank you very much.

End of FastScripts.

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