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July 5, 2002

Juli Inkster


MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, Juli needs to practice, so we'll try to make this go pretty quickly. I'll have her go over her card first, and we'll take some questions, not many.

Juli, do you want to start on your true front 9, the back 9? Tough time on No. 11.

JULI INKSTER: Yeah, 11, I put it in the gunk off the tee and just tried to play the smartest shot, get it back on the fairway, and had an easy 8-iron to the green, and pushed that on the bunker, and hit that on the green, and chipped that, and made a putt for double. It wasn't a great start.

Then 13, again I hit my drive right in the bunker and hit the lip, and just kicked out. Hit a 5-iron on and two putted for bogey.

MODERATOR: Birdie on 17.

JULI INKSTER: Had a good chip in there about 6 feet, made that for birdie, sand wedge -- lob wedge, whatever you want to call it.

Then 4, I had a good 8-iron -- not a full one, a three-quarter 8-iron, and hit the pin and knocked it about 4 feet away, made that for birdie.

7, over the green in two, bad chip, left myself a 12-footer, made that for birdie.

8, made that in the right rough, no shot, had a 50-yard shot, hit that over the green, chipped that, a foot putt for a bogey.

And number 9, I hit in the fairway and hit a 5-iron left, had a bad lie, chipped on, missed about a 15-footer for par, so I finished bogey.

MODERATOR: Three of the four leaders have bogeyed number 9 today, by the way. Questions? And we'll try to get through this as quick as possible. Here we go on the aisle, please.

Q. Juli, talk a little bit about Nancy Lopez's finish.

JULI INKSTER: Pretty neat. We were on the tee. You don't want to get too caught up in what's going on there because you have a full day ahead of you, but I think it's great, that whole pairing, Patty Sheehan, Lopez and Betsy King. In their era, they were the best, and they played aggressive, and they were fun to watch. I thought it was a great pairing for the spectators.

Q. Juli, I see you shaking your head as you were talking about certain shots, yet you're in a position within striking the top. Would you --

JULI INKSTER: Yeah, I hung in there today, I played with a lot of heart out there. I wasn't hitting it the way I wanted to hit it but I chipped, and then my lie putts were excellent today, kept me in the ball game, so I'm still in the red, and there's not a lot of people that can say that, so I've got two more days to go out there and try to make something happen.

Q. Isn't there usually -- even when you win one round like that, are you where you really have to hang on?

JULI INKSTER: I was hanging on by my pinkies today. I hung in there, and came back and I got it back to even par for the day, and then to go bogey-bogey, it kind of takes the wind out of your sails, but you know what? Nothing I can do about it.

I just got to get ready to play tomorrow because I know the wind is going to be blowing tomorrow, too. Do you think so?

Q. Juli, I was wondering, with the way Annika has been playing, is there a little bit of the Tiger effect in that you wonder whether she'll back up again?

JULI INKSTER: She won't back up. Bottom line is she's probably the one to beat, but with two rounds of golf, if I can get my game going, I feel like I can play with her, but until I do that, she's the one to beat.

Q. Does that mean you'll play more aggressive?

JULI INKSTER: No, you can't really go out there and try to play aggressive. You got to go out there and try to play -- take each shot as it comes. I thought the pin placements today were extremely tough, and on some of the -- you know, on most of the downwind holes, they had the pin up front, and the front of the greens were watered, so just -- i'd like to ask them, where are we supposed to hit the ball?

Because if you land it on the green, you're behind the hole, or over the green. If you landed short, it hits the wet spot and spits back. You can't really go out there and play aggressive.

It's not like the greens are holding. You've got to just play certain spots on the green and putt over to it, and when you get an opportunity to make birdie, you need to cash in.

MODERATOR: Two more questions.

Q. Juli, your age is not that much different than Nancy's. What is it about your game that's allowed it to weather better over the years.

JULI INKSTER: My age is a lot different than Nancy's; she's a lot older than I am. I don't know, I just -- I can't answer that because I really don't know Nancy's practice schedule or what she does at home or whatever.

You know, I've kind of come to realize that in order for me to compete out here, I have to practice at home, so I practice a lot at home, so when I'm out here I'm ready to play. I think in order to play this game you have to have the desire to practice and the desire to play.

And I think sometimes you have done as much as you can do in the game, maybe you lose a little bit of desire. I can't speak for Nancy, but I know in order for me to play well, I have to still want it and I still want it.

Q. I wonder if you could -- the par 4s are playing pretty tough today for the whole field. Could you talk a little bit about that and which ones were the toughest?

JULI INKSTER: I thought 11 was extremely tough today. The tough par 4s out here are -- 9 is a very tough par 4. Let's see, 5 is a good par 4, 16 is a good par 4, and I think 13 is a good par 4. There's a lot of good ones out there.

I think even the short ones, number 12 today, I hit a 5-iron off the tee, Amy Fruhwirth hit probably a 5-wood, Annika hit a driver, and I don't think any of us were on the green. So how do you play that hole? I'd like to know, because the pin is on 7, straight downwind, I hit it short and it stayed short. I guess Amy was on the green. Annika only had about 30-yard shot, she is over the green. I think even the short downwind holes are playing tough.

MODERATOR: All right, Juli, thanks very much for spending some time with us.

End of FastScripts....

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