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November 5, 2006

Joe Durant


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: We'd like to welcome Joe Durant to the interview room. Joe, great week and a great couple of months of playing golf.

At this time, I'd like to introduce Dean Kern, who is the U.S. markets leader for PriceWaterhouse Cooper, and he's got a special presentation for you.

DEAN KERN: First of all, on behalf of all the partners and the people of PriceWaterhouseCoopers, I'd like to congratulate you for winning the seventh Fall Finish. I think your play over the last 11 weeks has just been really inspiring. You were in there week in and week out, playing really hard.

I know this is your first win of the Fall Finish, but when you were battling early on against guys like Tiger, and especially this weekend against Jim Furyk who's just been consistent all year long, it was great to just sit there and watch you guys battling it out.

You are part of now a long list of strong winners of the Fall Finish award so, again, congratulations, and great tournament. Thank you.

JOE DURANT: Thank you. Appreciate it. Thank you very much. I'd like to say thank you, Dean, for sponsoring us over the last couple years. It adds a nice bit of spice to the end, makes guys grind hard at the end. Playing with Jim today, ironic because he was one of the guys that could pass me today, but I played very well. Thanks again.

JOEL SCHUCHMANN: You've had a little bit of time to reflect on the last couple months. You win around $2 million plus the $500,000 for the Fall Finish presented by PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Maybe some comments about this week as well as the last couple months.

JOE DURANT: It just kind of came out of the blue, to be honest with you. I've just played very well the last month and a half, two months. Made a lot putts and seemed to not get in my way a lot which is a pleasant change. I'm very of fortunate. Hate to see the year end, but looking forward to next year.

Q. You've got all this money coming in. Were you thinking dollar signs on that last putt on 18?

JOE DURANT: I was trying to make it, sure. I knew Jim had me by a shot and didn't hit a very good putt. That was probably the best 3 iron I've had in a long time. That was a tricky putt. I had a similar putt on the green yesterday and basically did the same thing, came out of it a little bit.

But I'm pleased with how I played. Jim played very well today.

Q. Do you have a sense that you don't want this season to end right now? You're going to take a little two month break. How do you feel about that?

JOE DURANT: I'll be honest with you, I'm pretty tired right now. I hate to see it end, but yet hopefully I can kind of pick up where I'm leaving off when we go out to Mercedes.

I just need to kind of stay on top of things a little bit and just keep working, but I'm going to take a few weeks off between now and Thanksgiving.

Q. Do you think this may be a sign of things to come once the players have met their obligations for the number of tournaments they play during the year? That you get tired is just a natural understanding, but do you think this is setting a precedent for other players?

JOE DURANT: As far as?

Q. Kind of sputtering out toward the end of the year. I met my obligation, I played the number of tournaments that's required for my sponsor, but I just don't want to play this one because I'm tired.

JOE DURANT: I don't know, I think everyone is fairly consistent in the number of events they played. Obviously it's going to be a different scenario next year with the schedule being condensed leading into the playoff system and the TOUR Championship.

Guys might shut it down after the TOUR Championship next year, some guys might not. But I think guys might even play a little more.

Q. Let me throw out a couple. Seemed like every time either you or Furyk would get within this far of Scott there would be a spurt and then he'd be uncatchable. Secondly, when some of us watch that kid play, it looks like he's got seemingly all the attributes to be maybe No. 1 some day. I'm wondering if you could comment on both of those points?

JOE DURANT: I was obviously very impressed with how he played yesterday. I knew going into today it was going to be very difficult to catch him. He was swinging well, driving it beautifully. And around here, if you can drive it well, you can go after this golf course.

I mean, actually he could have been several more under this week. He didn't make a lot of putts starting out yesterday. He played great. He certainly has all the tools to be potentially No. 1 one day. Obviously our No. 1 player right now doesn't take too kindly to guys unseating him, which is understandable.

Adam is a great player, and he's going to be great player for a long time. He played fantastic this week. My hat's off to him. We couldn't get near him really.

Q. Safe to say that open putting stance will be back next year?

JOE DURANT: I think it will be. I don't think I'm going to change much over the off season.

Q. Is that one thing you'd credit the last couple months to?

JOE DURANT: Yes, definitely.

Q. When did it become obvious that you and Jim would be playing for second? Did you have any exchange going up 14 when you hear the cheer at 13?

JOE DURANT: I guess he holed a bunker shot on 13. Once he did that, I kind of looked at Jim, laughed, and we didn't have to say it, but we knew it was pretty much game, set, match as far as the winner was concerned.

We had a good Jim and I had a good stretch of holes together there, and I just hit a poor shot on actually didn't hit a terrible shot, pushed it a little bit on 16 and made bogey.

Q. When did you make the swing coach change? And was there anything this year in the swing that kind of got you going?

JOE DURANT: It was Bay Hill week actually. I wasn't in Bay Hill, and I went down to see Brian that week. You know, I had the same teacher for 13 years, Ron Gring, who was a good friend of mine. He was a great instructor.

I think more than anything it was probably my fault that I wasn't understanding what he was trying to get me to do. I said, Well, if I get a fresh perspective on my swing, go to see someone else, and Brian told me the same thing Ron has told me but maybe using a little different vocabulary.

It took me a while and started to click. About June, I guess, I really started hitting it better. But basically the same things I've worked on my whole career.

Q. Did you and Jim have as much fun as you can have playing for second today?

JOE DURANT: Yeah. You know, we were having a good time. We were trying to make as many birdies as we could, but we just didn't have enough holes. You weren't going to catch him today. It just wasn't going to happen.

JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Joe Durant, thank you.

End of FastScripts.

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