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December 10, 2006

Roger Beale, Jr.

James Johnson


JOAN vT ALEXANDER: Thanks for joining us. Could we get some thoughts about the week from you?
JAMES JOHNSON: We've been excited about this week for six months since we made the team, I have anyway. And you know we would have liked to have finished higher, but it's been a fantastic week from the very start. Just being out on the golf course here, in Barbados with friends and family and supporters who have been with us our whole lives, to see us with the rest of the world, trying our best here in the World Cup has been fantastic.
ROGER BEALE, JR.: Absolutely. The local crowd has been phenomenal. Honestly, we really had to grind it out certainly the last couple of days, we had a good start and after the second day, we really had to grind it. And the support they offered us was unbelievable, and I have to really take my hat off to the whole local crowd, they were amazing.

Q. You started the day with two bogeys, 11 pars, can you tell us about that transition, how did you acclimatize to the conditions and how was it out there?
JAMES JOHNSON: We've been having trouble starting for the whole week.
ROGER BEALE, JR.: To say the least.
JAMES JOHNSON: If we could have played the first two holes even par, we would probably be about six or eight spots or teams higher.
I don't think it's nerves, not for me anyway. I think it's just trying to get in a rhythm. We were talking about that in a press conference earlier and we just had bad starts. I think once you've played a few holes and you're kind of into the game, we've shown --
ROGER BEALE, JR.: We've improved on the back nine, certainly. But yeah, it is what it is. We finished strong and that's the most important thing.
JAMES JOHNSON: We're really proud of the way we came back, especially the second day, we were 4-over, 5-over after four. I managed to play the last 14 even par, which you know, was really good for us. Just hang in there when we weren't doing so well, meant a lot for us.
Today's round I think we were 1-over par, but I think a lot of the teams kind of on the top of the leaderboard --
ROGER BEALE, JR.: Were moving around. Obviously some were lower.
JAMES JOHNSON: It was by far our best day and to do it on the last day, it means a lot. It's really satisfying.
ROGER BEALE, JR.: The conditions were as tough -- even the first day was difficult. On No. 6, it was blowing 50 miles an hour and in the rain it was like a white squall. Yeah, absolutely.

Q. What's next for you guys?
JAMES JOHNSON: What's next. (Laughter) Well, we're going to enjoy the evening. We've worked hard over the last several months for this. We've tried to place the emphasis on enjoying this week and doing as well as we can.
You know, I've kind of told everyone that I'm going back to amateur golf, and I will be back for my regular job which is advertising and marketing. You know, I don't think this week is going to change my life from a work sense, but it definitely will from an enjoyment sense. One of the best weeks I've ever experienced.
ROGER BEALE, JR.: Absolutely. To represent your country on the world stage, everyone would love to do that, I'm sure, and it's a great honour and privilege that we're fortunate enough to do so. Certainly for me. Yeah, absolutely it was an amazing week.
JOAN vT ALEXANDER: What are you going to do, Roger?
ROGER BEALE, JR.: I'm not too sure. Certainly it was a great week, I enjoyed it, and I don't know, we'll see maybe some more golf, competitive golf. We'll see. Think about it.

Q. Are you going to stay as a pair and come back next year, or are you going to leave your options open?
ROGER BEALE, JR.: If it was up to me, I'm here in a second, believe me, but it's his choice.
JAMES JOHNSON: We're going to have to kind of revisit that issue when the qualifying -- find out more about local qualifying. I will be an amateur, so unless I turn professional, I wouldn't be eligible to play.
We'll chat about it and kind of come up with a plan.

Q. Do you have a message for the R&A who allowed you to play this week, because it was a unique situation?
JAMES JOHNSON: I think they were very helpful in the sense that the advice they gave us was very useful. You know, we didn't really know what to do when -- a year ago we were told that we would have this opportunity to play. Being one of the better players, even as an amateur at the time, obviously I wanted to try to participate. So we went to that and as I said before, they were a little bit surprised. They didn't really have -- they had never experienced a scenario like this before.
I basically made it clear to them that I wasn't really interested in any monetary gain, and once that was made clear, they then realised that once that was kind of -- that issue was put aside, monies were donated, that I could theoretically turn professional and then go back to amateur golf and that's exactly what happened.

Q. They might have easily decided you couldn't, so presumably you are quite grateful?
JAMES JOHNSON: Yeah, I am grateful to them. I don't know if they could have prevented me from playing because I could have just turned professional and stayed a pro. The issue was really me having to sit out of amateur golf, because I always want to come back to amateur golf. The issue was whether I would have to wait to return to amateur golf.
Worst-case scenario, I would have turned pro, I accepted the money, and then had to wait for a year or two. But it worked out like that. I got the scenario that I wanted.

Q. Which was good of them, though; they were flexible enough to allow that.
JAMES JOHNSON: The R&A have been fantastic. They actually basically told the Barbados Golf Association that it was their decision, so they were not actually taking the -- it wasn't a position of them being the authority on the decision. They were very helpful in guiding us.
But, I don't know how to putt it to you. They weren't ones -- they are the governing body of how we run golf here in the association. But they basically told the Barbados Golf Association that in this particular instance, it was their calling.

Q. You two guys were the last ones to represent Barbados and now lots of kid seeing you on television, what's your message to three, four, five-year-olds?
ROGER BEALE, JR.: Well, certainly, yeah, practise, and you never know. You could do the same as us representing or even better and get a few out on the Tour or European Tour or whatever.
Certainly with some of James' money going to the PGA for the development of golf in Barbados, certainly having a driving range and really promoting golf here will certainly help that. Very difficult to create an interest in golf if you really can't practise or teach or anywhere.
Nothing against the current facilities here. They have scholarships and they are very kind with their facilities but to really get into a national level to grass roots or national school program or whatever, you need facilities so hopefully it will be ready within a short period of time and we can get a large junior program going and go from there.

Q. Where is it going to be situated?
JAMES JOHNSON: It has not been announced yet. There are a couple of plans up in the air. Probably somewhere on the south of the island.
JOAN vT ALEXANDER: Thanks and thanks for joining us.

End of FastScripts…

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