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August 1, 2006

Geoff Ogilvy


TODD BUDNICK: We thank Geoff Ogilvy for stopping in the media center at the 2006 Buick Open. This is your first date in the U.S. since winning the U.S. Open in June, your first major championship. Congratulations on that. Talk about when it's like to be Major Champion now?

GEOFF OGILVY: Yeah, it's pretty good. The British Open was fun, because I had four weeks off after. I went back to Australia after the U.S. Open. So that was the first time I got to see anyone from the tour and everyone involved and that was fun.

TODD BUDNICK: What it was it like coming back to Australia?

GEOFF OGILVY: It was crazy. It was fun. It was a big deal. They are pretty excited about it at home. Like you said, we haven't won a major for 10 or 11 years. Been trying to find the next Greg Norman for a while. I think I jumped the queue a little bit ahead of a couple of guys who might have been in front of me. They are pretty excited.

The Tour down there has been having a bit of trouble and golf has been struggling a little bit in Australia, so hopefully they are pretty excited and use it to kick it onto better things.

TODD BUDNICK: Talk about your year. You've won twice now, you won a major and a World Golf Championships event; three times in the last year and a half.

GEOFF OGILVY: Yeah, it's been good, it has. I kind of felt it coming. I guess everyone does. About two or three years ago, I kind of felt it coming. I was improving all the time. It was just a matter of having a week where you hole the putts. It just happened that I did it this year in two of the biggest tournaments you play, which is nice. You win play twice and it's always unbelievable but to win two of the bigger ones, it's pretty nice, especially a major. Fortunately, you play well on the right weeks, but I've been playing well in majors before that. I do enjoy everything about them. So it's been really good.

TODD BUDNICK: You performed well here, also. Talk about coming into this week here.

GEOFF OGILVY: Yeah, I had one really good year here. I think I finished second the year Jim one. I've always been there or thereabouts, I don't know, Top 20 most of the time, so I was only a good putting week away from winning here, so I feel comfortable. One of the ones that really has to stay on the schedule and I really enjoy the tournament. The crowds are some of the most excitable crowds anywhere all year, so it's fun.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about how things have changed for you maybe personally or professionally since you finally won your first major?

GEOFF OGILVY: Personally nothing really. A sense of satisfaction I guess. But at home professionally, pretty different. That's a lot more people calling, looking for time and a lot more requests on things and all of the sudden there's a whole bunch of golf tournaments at the end of the year that want me to play now that never used to want me to play before.

TODD BUDNICK: That's a good thing.

GEOFF OGILVY: That's a good thing. Instead of at Christmastime sitting and watching everyone else play, now I get to play a few of those fun ones. Just a whole lot more requests for time. I feel like I never used to have to say no to people that much because I never had that many people asked me that many things. Now five people are asking you to do something on the same day; you've got to say no to four of them or all of them, so sometimes it's hard. Just a lot more pressure on your time. Like I never used to come into the media center on Tuesdays.

TODD BUDNICK: That's a good problem.

GEOFF OGILVY: That's a good problem to have. It's good. I mean, some of the things that go along with winning a major you could do without, but most of the things that go along with it is fantastic.

Q. Another good problem to have is that your name is being mentioned as a possible Player of the Year because of the two wins you have. You're kind of right there with Tiger, maybe with Phil, a strong finish, any thoughts about that in the back of your mind?

GEOFF OGILVY: Yeah, I don't know. I don't think I wouldn't vote for me at the moment. (Laughter) I really wouldn't. I would vote for I don't know, Phil or Tiger at this point. Tiger at the British Open, and Phil's performance was impressive, and Tiger won in Dubai.

I would say to do that, because Tiger is going to win because now and the end of the year. Phil will win if he doesn't win in the next couple of weeks, he's not because he's not going to play. But I think I'd have to win the PGA or Firestone or something or THE TOUR Championship. It would have to be a really big one because I think Tiger would definitely be in front of me at the moment.

Q. This tournament this week though, with a good showing here, perhaps a win here leading into the PGA?

GEOFF OGILVY: Oh, it's no question, this is always a pretty strong field. Any time you win one in a great field, Vijay is here, Furyk's here. Any time you win in a field like that, it's a pretty impressive field. Whenever anyone wins this tournament, it's always a pretty strong win because there's always a bunch of Top 10 guys here, and Tiger is always here. And they always have those lists, how many times have you won when Tiger has been in the field which is a pretty good percent to have because he wins 30 percent of the time, so if you win and 60 percent of the time he's there, that's a pretty good stat there. It makes the tournament strong there. I still wouldn't vote for me. That's a hard one.

Q. You were talking about the demands on your time, can you talk about your appearance on Letterman?

GEOFF OGILVY: That was pretty fun. The whole day was pretty surreal because it was the day after the U.S. Open. We stayed out quite late Sunday night, so we were tired Monday and just getting driven around Manhattan doing CNN, FOX News, ESPN, all of the stuff that normal golfers don't get anywhere near, FOX News and stuff, it's just not normal, all around New York.

Then going into Letterman, that was pretty you get out of the car and all of the autograph seekers are there for Adam Sandler. They are waiting for who gets out of the back of the limo and they are disappointed because it's not Adam Sandler. It was good fun. I was on for two minutes, didn't stutter any of my lines.

Q. Inaudible?

GEOFF OGILVY: There was a couple of them I really didn't like to be honest with you. But I knew where he was coming from. When I read the list I had not watched the show and in the first 20 minutes, he's quite clever like that, he's telling you the jokes at the end of the show. So if you only switched it on, a few of them are funny in the Top Ten list, and the rest are stupid, but if you watch the first 20 minutes it's quite funny. He's constantly running the same ten jokes the whole show. Adam Sandler read through my list before I went on and he chuckled, the ones that I didn't like he said were really funny. So when Adam Sandler is telling you that's funny, it's pretty funny. It was awesome, he's really nice. He plays at the Pro Am in Sony every year in Hawaii and he's exactly how you imagine him. He was really nice.

Q. You talked about jumping the queue, the kind of year you've had, the Top 10, World Rankings, Money List, $4 million, how much of a revelation is that in your mind for you? How surprised are you that it's happened?

GEOFF OGILVY: Literally surprised it's happened. I wasn't that surprised after the Match Play. I guess I was semi surprised after the U.S. Open. I think anyone after they win a major is surprised. A lot of guys win majors who don't probably think they are going to or believe that they can. Believing that you can and then doing it doesn't really make it any more believable when it happens, you know what I mean, if that makes any sense. Does that make any sense?

Glad; happy about it. It's been I don't know, like if you'd asked me when I was 20 where would you like your golf to be, I would say it would be a fair estimate to say I would be about where I am right now.

But for about six years, six or seven years now, I really didn't improve that much. I only improved in kind of last two years, you know what I mean. So the rate of good things that have happened in the last two years are kind of surprising, you know what I mean.

Q. You guys are professional, you play all over the world in all kind of conditions, but how difficult is it to go from a golf course like Hoylake which is brown

GEOFF OGILVY: Total opposite to here?

Q. Total opposite to here.

GEOFF OGILVY: How much of a difference is that? It's harder to go from here to there than it is to go from there to here, because we play that once a year; we play this type of setup pretty much every week, you know, rough like this, just off the green.

I guess you just learn to adapt. I guess if all you'd ever done in your whole life was played a golf course around here and you went to this for one week, it would be completely bizarre. You grow up in Australia, Australians have to travel somewhere to play because Australia is on its own. It's a small country. You get to a point you have to go somewhere. So we are all used to traveling to different countries and playing different golf courses. That's the nature of doing that is you I think by the time you get good enough to be a professional golfer, you tend to play a lot of different types of golf and you learn to adapt week in, week out. The British Open, that's why a lot of players don't play the week before and will go over to Ireland and all that because it takes a while to get used to it again. But coming back from there to here, we play this type of setup so much that it's quite easy to get back into this.

Q. You were talking about the field a little bit and how that makes it a bigger deal, a lot of the players say they don't pay attention to who else is here, but a field like this with Tiger and Vijay and Furyk and yourself does that make it a bigger deal? Do you get more fired up or is it a bigger deal to win?

GEOFF OGILVY: It's probably a bigger deal to win when there's I think so. I think people, I think a lot of players will choose to play tournaments where the good players are playing. There are probably quite a few tournaments where people are not playing. It's probably about even money there. It's definitely a better feel about a golf tournament when the top few guys are there. There's no question it's a better field when Tiger plays, especially a place like this because the fans enjoy it when he plays so much; Vijay; when Phil is around, it always has a different feel about it; when Furyk is here. Trying to beat guys like that, it's always a satisfying thing because they are the best players in the world for a reason.

You know, they are quite hard to beat. It does. It gives the events that's why the majors are the most special because they have the best field. This is why this is one of the better events because it generally attracts a pretty good field. It definitely adds something, no question, to make it a better win.

Q. You played very well here in the four years you've been here. What is it about this place that suits your game so well? Is it the fact that you can hit your driver or the fact that you can putt these greens that are so good?

GEOFF OGILVY: When I first came here I didn't think I was going to putt very well because I always putted bent greens than I putted poa greens. I putt nicely on them. Maybe it's because the other fairways are so close, so when I miss, it goes on another fairway and I've got a shot. (Laughter) don't know. It's a comfortable place. I enjoy being here. It fits my eye. There are only a couple holes I don't like looking at off the tee, that don't suit me off the tee but the rest I really like.

One of the first few times you go to a place you play well, it's just weird, sometimes it's the only way you can explain it. Like Jeff Sluman last week, he said even if he's not playing very well, when he gets there, he plays well when he goes there, so it's just something about some places that is intangible. It's hard to grasp why people play well at places and they do. It's not like I've dominated here but I've been comfortable here.

End of FastScripts.

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