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June 26, 2006

Padraig Harrington


TODD BUDNICK: (No microphone)... a long week.

PADRAIG HARRINGTON: It was better for me I got more sleep in. I was staying two minutes down the road, so when there was a delay, I went back to bed for a couple of hours. I feel fresher now than I did really any day this week, any day last week.

TODD BUDNICK: Talk about the frustration, I know you go through it a lot out here, but starting, stopping, starting, stopping.

PADRAIG HARRINGTON: You know, it's just a fact of life out here. It happens. Obviously there was a little worry that we wouldn't get the end of this round finished. After having a good start, it made a big difference to me, especially when I was in sole second place. I was trying to get those ranking points for the Ryder Cup. So if they pulled the round, it would have been very disappointing. But thankfully, they got it in.

TODD BUDNICK: Questions?

Q. When and if Ben collects the trophy and the first prize check it will be his second win. What does it mean for a golfer to get the second win after waiting so long?

PADRAIG HARRINGTON: I think it's important, very important. Ben has always had all the credentials. He had a good amateur career. He was a good young pro when he turned pro. Winning the British Open put him under a lot of pressure. If anything, it wouldn't be easy to play good golf after that.

You can take it two ways. I think it came so early for Ben that he probably was always trying to prove to everybody he was an Open winner. Obviously wins like this proves that he's right. The fact he won it proves it, too. He will probably go on to be a stronger player now that he has another win under his belt and I'm sure win more in the future. But definitely winning a major early like that does put a lot of pressure on somebody.

Q. When play started today after the rain and they finally got going for a good amount of time, the difference was eight strokes. When he double bogeys 12, is there any thought somebody could catch him?

PADRAIG HARRINGTON: I didn't know he double bogeyed 12. I had my head down just trying to make birdies. Obviously 12 is a very difficult hole. It's easy to double bogey. I have got to say you know, I was trying to make as many birdies as I could in the last five holes that I had and let Ben look after himself. Even with a few mistakes it's unlikely that he was ever going to come back. Eight shots is a lot.

Q. Even going back to yesterday, you had a couple of long birdie putts and another one today. Can you go into your putting and how much that has helped you today?

PADRAIG HARRINGTON: I had a terrible day on Saturday. Then I came out on this round yesterday and holed three long ones in the first 10 holes. You have to be patient. They do even out over time. But definitely, I got very frustrated on Saturday. I hit a lot close and I would say some went in.

To be honest, I gave myself a lot of chances. If you're continually on the green I hardly missed a green in the last 36 holes, so I had a lot of birdie chances. Some of them are going to drop eventually.

Q. You mentioned the Ryder Cup and going to Ireland this year. Have you found yourself in the last month leading up to this Ryder Cup coming up the fall that you have put more pressure on yourself more so than any other Ryder Cup leading up to this?

PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Not necessarily any more pressure. I've put a lot of pressure on anyway. Unfortunately for me every time I've teed up it up so far this year, I've finished a shot or two out of making any real headway in the Ryder Cup, you know, one or two shots every time and getting double the points or so.

It's very hard to make a Ryder Cup team unless you make a big jump, win one tournament at least where you make a lot of points one week. It's difficult to make it in small amounts. I'm knocking at the door with those small amounts, but I have got seven more events. I would really like it if I made one good event, forget about the other six sort of thing, rather than trying to make it with seven small ones.

TODD BUDNICK: Thank you, Padraig.

End of FastScripts.

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