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July 28, 2006

Ian Woosnam


SCOTT CROCKETT: All right, Ian, many thanks for coming in and joining us, as always. A good day yesterday and another good day today. You were saying you hit 18 greens in regulation. You must be absolutely delighted with your form so far.

IAN WOOSNAM: Yeah, I think I made a few changes on the practice round yesterday and to my putting, and fortunately it's worked for me. I just take a little bit more time in my address position, trying to get the ball a little bit further back in my stance and lining up to it correctly, and then from there I'm just trying to swing naturally. I've had a couple of bad drives. That's about it, really. 18 greens today, 16 greens yesterday. Putted the best I did in ten years I would say the last two days most probably.

SCOTT CROCKETT: Overall is this the best you've played for this length of time or over the first two days?

IAN WOOSNAM: Over the first two days, definitely. Yeah, it's the best I've played for a long time most probably, the most consistently I've played for a long time I would say. You know, I play well, but the putting has been so bad, and I think that puts a lot of pressure on me, and I tend to hit bad shots when I'm trying to hit the ball close all the times.

SCOTT CROCKETT: You started at 10, birdied 11. What did you do there?

IAN WOOSNAM: I hit a drive and a 7 iron to about eight foot and holed a putt.

16, I hit a 7 iron to about six feet and holed a putt.

2, I hit a 4 iron to ten foot and holed a putt.

3, I hit a driver, 3 wood to 15 feet, two putted.

4, hit a drive and a 6 iron to 20 feet and holed a putt.

5, I hit a 5 iron to 30 feet and holed a putt.

Q. Are we going to get the secret today on the putting? You wouldn't tell us last night.

IAN WOOSNAM: I've basically moved the back ball back in my stance. Usually when I move it back in my stance I stand open. All I've done it is I've moved it back and keeping my feet square to the target. For some reason it doesn't look very pretty, doesn't feel very pretty, but I'm striking them really well, and they're going on line. If I miss one, I'm tending to miss it right, which is a good positive for me. When they go left, that's an un positive for me.

Q. You must have made these sort of adjustments countless times in the past. Why is it suddenly working now? Is it a combination of changes?

IAN WOOSNAM: I wouldn't say I think I'm most probably trying to get back to where I should have been, really. I think I've been in a bad place, in a bad address position for such a long time; I don't know whether it's because I've practiced my putting with the ball too far forward and it's slipped into my long game, or my long game had slipped into my putting. It's amazing if I get in the right position how much different how well I putt and how much better I strike the ball.

Q. Another factor is you're looking fitter and obviously feeling fitter. You've done a lot of good things with your back, I believe?

IAN WOOSNAM: Who told you that?

Q. A little bird. I think you've talked about it. How much can you tell us about it?

IAN WOOSNAM: I can tell you whatever. I can't remember the name of it. I spoke to Michael King about six weeks ago, and he went to see this doctor, Dr. Hughes, down at St. Peters Hospital just outside Wentworth there, and I have to say Michael King, how he is after taking these injections, he's like a new man. So I decided to take them four weeks ago, and I think something like yesterday afternoon where I would have to come in and I would have really stiffened up, I think that's where it's made a big difference. It's taken a lot of stiffness out of my back and it's given me the freedom to swing.

Q. What's in the injections?

IAN WOOSNAM: It's called TNF. It's too hard to explain. It's an injection it was developed for rheumatoid arthritis, I think, about ten years ago, and then they started using it on ankylosing spondylitis, and I've had greater success with it. It's a once a week injection, and it's a bit like an insulin injection, you just do it yourself, and I've seen the benefits from it now already.

SCOTT CROCKETT: Is that indefinitely, or is there a point where you stop taking them?

IAN WOOSNAM: You can take them as long as you like. The decision was there's a few risks with everything. The decision was if I wanted to keep playing to a reasonable standard, I needed to do this, I think. I think it's maybe showing up perhaps.

Q. You were talking about Michael King. He's basically straightened up and is playing golf again?

IAN WOOSNAM: I saw Michael King playing the Seniors Jersey Open and he walked four rounds. I've known him a long time, and in the 18 months before that or a year ago, he couldn't even do 200 yards. It's a marvelous thing for him. A lot of people should find out a lot about it.

Q. Is there any chance to see you as a playing captain in September if you keep that form?

IAN WOOSNAM: I don't think so. I made the decision, and I don't think two rounds is going to change my mind. I will stick to what I'm going to do being a captain, and even if I happen to win the next three tournaments or four tournaments in a row, no, I will still be the captain.

Q. Is it a very expensive treatment?

IAN WOOSNAM: It's very expensive.

Q. Can you tell us how much?

IAN WOOSNAM: In the region of an injection is nearly 200 pounds a week.

Q. And you do it once a week?


Q. Well, with a 600,000� first prize this week, that will ease the burden slightly. I was just going to ask about the chance to win. You'll be the oldest winner on the Tour if you do win, surpassing a certain Des Smyth?

IAN WOOSNAM: I don't even want to think about it. All I want to do is play well tomorrow. I'm just excited if I can hole some putts. It's a big thing for me because I obviously want to play seniors golf, and the way I've been putting, it takes the fun out of the game and I've lost the fun and I've lost the interest in golf, really. But when you putt like that, you feel that you've still got a chance of winning. I know if I can do that, I'll keep working on it I'm not going to hole every putt in the world, but as long as it feels good, you've got a chance.

Q. You missed two, 8 and 9, good chances?

IAN WOOSNAM: Most probably the 9th hole was the worst putt I hit all day, but I missed one on the 10th from about six foot, and I missed one on the 9th well, the 10th and the 18th from about eight feet, as well, six feet.

But the greens are tricky, you're going to miss some. But as long as it feels good in your mind and feels good off the putter, you're awake. It's when the old twitch comes in and you think, oh, God, how am I going to get the next one in?

Q. I think you only birdied one of the par 5s.

IAN WOOSNAM: Yeah, I hit a bad drive down the 15th and had to chop it out and two putted for a 5. 17, I was pin high in two, just a yard off the green, and hit a poor chip to about 12 feet and missed that. Then I hit a poor drive off of No. 6 and in the end made a good 5.

Q. You were president of the World Snooker Federation, is that still the case and how often do you play?

IAN WOOSNAM: I used to be the president of the Snooker Association. I gave that up about four years ago, and I actually don't play much snooker now. I've taken my snooker table out of the house. I've got a pool table instead.

Q. Why is that?

IAN WOOSNAM: I put a pool table and a nice big lounge area so I can relax.

Q. Can you just give us a line on playing with Graeme McDowell today, how he looked to you?

IAN WOOSNAM: Graeme played pretty steady, but he had a couple of push drives and got into the bunkers, and it started going nicely then just slipped away from him a little bit. He didn't do much wrong, and if he keeps playing like that, he'll do well over the weekend.

Q. Were there any comments from Graeme or Nick that you can tell us about, any that are printable?

IAN WOOSNAM: No, not really. They were great. I think they were a bit shocked to see me putting so well (laughing). They were struggling to read the greens and I was taking one quick look and whacking it and it was going in. No, they enjoyed the experience, as well. It was a nice three ball.

Q. Actually Graeme mentioned your irons. He said it was a joy for him to be out there watching you hit your irons. It's always been the strong point of your game anyway, hasn't it?

IAN WOOSNAM: I moved the ball back a little bit and I was hitting them a bit lower than I usually do, but it was always under control. That was one good thing about it. Yeah, I didn't really hit many bad shots with an iron, if any, really. So that was nice.

Q. Bernhard Langer was in here the other day, and he seemed very keen to give you advice on the Ryder Cup. Will you talk to him before or any plans of having a meeting or whatever?

IAN WOOSNAM: No. I'm quite happy at the moment with how I feel with everything that's going on. I've had enough experience, I know how it works, I've been a vice captain. If I do need any help, I will ask Bernhard, yeah.

SCOTT CROCKETT: Ian, thanks, as always. Good luck over the weekend.

End of FastScripts.

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