September 23, 2006
SCOTT CROCKETT: Ladies and gentlemen, as always, the gentlemen have ten minutes before they have to go back to the team room, so I suppose the appropriate place to start is with Paul Casey. Fantastic end to your match, first time any Ryder Cup match has been decided by a hole in one. Just talk us through that.
PAUL CASEY: It's going to be expensive.
PAUL McGINLEY: He can afford it after last week.
PAUL CASEY: Howler and I played very good golf. Zach Johnson unfortunately did miss a few putts, which put us in a nice position.
And Woosie had said to me that all of the other guys who got to that hole earlier had hit 3 iron and as it turned out it was a perfect 4 iron, which the group decided on.
PAUL McGINLEY: So you did listen to him.
PAUL CASEY: I did listen to him. I knew it was close. It was very well struck, turned it on the wind. I knew it was pretty close, but when the crowd reacted at the back of the green, it was a bizarre moment. Just sort of hands in the air, looked around at Stewart and Zach and that was it and everybody shook hands and thanks very much. Very surreal situation, not actually walking up to a green and putting out or shaking hands on the green. So a fantastic moment.
SCOTT CROCKETT: Indeed. Before we take some questions, Paul, your match, a tough match and partnership with Padraig, not quite what you wanted at the end of the day.
PAUL McGINLEY: No. Obviously disappointed to lose. Bottom line is we played No. 1 and 2 in the world, both of them on their game, and when you do that, you're going to have a tough day, and we did. We battled well. We fought hard. We both played what I thought was good golf. But as I say, 1 and 2 in the world on their game is a pretty formidable combination.
The main thing is the team, obviously, we're four points ahead, and I'm absolutely delighted with that result. By no means are we finished yet. We've got a long way to go tomorrow. I think we were in a similar situation two years ago at Oakland Hills. I'm very proud of the team, we've done well so far and we have a big day tomorrow.
SCOTT CROCKETT: We have been joined by Sergio and Colin. Sergio, well played again today, four out of four. You can't hope for a better Ryder Cup.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: (Clapping) very good, that. It's very good.
SERGIO GARCIA: Thank you, Monty. (Embracing Monty.)
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: We're very close, we are.
SERGIO GARCIA: As Paul said, the most important thing, 10 6, and that's what's in my head and that's what's in everybody's head. And I think we're going to go out there tomorrow and try to win the singles. We don't want to go out there thinking, oh, let's get four and a half points because that's not the way to go. We want to go out there, try to win the singles and get as many points as we can. So that's the main goal and that's what we have to do. It's so simple.
SCOTT CROCKETT: Thoughts on your match, another close match with Lee ending in a halve.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: A lot of close games. Every game I've played comes down to the 18th. You know, I've lost one and halved a couple. In way it was unfortunate because we had a couple of putts on 17 and 18 that Lee just skimmed the hole on both of them unfortunately, but a half point, I have to say that Vaughn Taylor in his first Ryder Cup match played very well. Having been left out of the first three sessions, it's quite difficult to come back into foursomes, which is our most difficult form of golf, and he did very well, Vaughn. So all credit to him.
And I would like to say, though, that Ian Woosnam's picks have been justified. That's five points out of six that our picks have had without a loss. They haven't lost, and I think that has been totally justified in Woosie's selections.
And again, I'm just proud to be part of such a great team, and I think that's the word that's being used around the European camp right now. We are a fantastic team and a unit and we'll go out, and as Sergio says, want to win all five sessions for the first time ever. We've never won every session in the history of the Ryder Cup, I don't believe, and this is our golden opportunity to do the same tomorrow.
SCOTT CROCKETT: Gentlemen, thanks for those opening comments. Take some questions.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: That wasn't opening. That was the comment. (Laughter.) I thought that was the end. I thought that was it. (Laughter.)
SERGIO GARCIA: That was your best shot today.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: That was definitely my best shot, yeah.
Q. They said on TV that a spectator had nicked your 4 iron after you dropped it and I was wondering if that was true. Did you get it back? Do you have any idea what became of the ball?
PAUL CASEY: I know where the ball is. The ball is very safe. There is a 4 iron in my bag in the locker room; I haven't checked to see if it's mine yet. It was not a primary concern where the 4 iron was going; it's more of a shock at the moment and sort of instinct. The reaction of the whole crowds around the tee was just tremendous, and then to see it on the big screen replay was fantastic.
Q. You mentioned on television that you've never had an ace as a professional. Did you have one as an amateur or anything like that, any kind of tournament?
PAUL CASEY: I've had many holes in one but never in a tournament round of golf, let alone in a big situation like this. And especially to close out a match, just probably something that will go down in history. I've seen holes in one at the Ryder Cup, Faldo at The Belfry, Howard Clark, Constantino Rocca, there's a few Europeans that have made holes in one, but to close out a match is something different.
SERGIO GARCIA: And only about two million people saw that shot, so not many people saw it billion, billion.
Q. A lot was made about the American pairings and how that was important for their success. Obviously you were a part of some very successful pairings this week. How important is that, the pairings?
SERGIO GARCIA: Obviously it's very important because having a very solid first two days, it can put you in a very good position to win the Ryder Cup. So it is important.
But, to tell you the truth, I think on The European Team, it's very easy to pair somebody with another player, because we just love playing we just love playing with one another. We have no complaints whatsoever. And we just love it.
You know, if you're out there and your partner misses a shot, you know, the only thing you do is just give them a laugh and just encouragement. You don't give them any weird looks or anything like that. That's not the way to go and that's not the way to win Ryder Cups. That's what we do.
I think that's why we gel so nicely, not only myself, but the whole team. And, you know, I'm just glad that we have the little
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Cushion.
SERGIO GARCIA: But we have it figured out, so that's it. (Laughter.)
Q. The last time the U.S. won the Ryder Cup was obviously in Brookline after facing the exact same deficit they face here. I know you guys said you want to go out and win as many points as possible, but for all that that defeat, all that was made of that defeat and all that meant to this Ryder Cup itself, how special would it be to go out there and slam the door, having them in the same exact position, and this time they are on your soil?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: That wasn't 10 6. That was 10 9 overnight. We had three rookies that had not played before, and they happened to draw the three top Americans at the time in Tiger, Davis Love and Phil Mickelson. So it wasn't 10 6; it was 10 9. This is very different. This is 10 6.
We have a team here with two rookies that have played, and played well, and everybody has played twice. And everyone's getting at least half a point, I believe, on our side already. So this is a very different situation, and it's also been playing in Ireland and not in Boston. So I don't want any comparisons with the score line of 10 6 as it was in 1999. This is a very, very different situation.
Q. Can I just ask, what meant more to you, the hole in one or the million pounds last week?
PAUL CASEY: I think what would mean more to me is the team, what Sergio is talking about, go out there tomorrow and win the singles. I have fantastic memories from Detroit two years ago.
Last week was very special, and what we play is an individual sport. But every so often we get to bond as a team and come together as a team, and what you guys don't see behind closed doors and in the evenings is just 12, well, 13 plus, a lot of people behind the scenes just coming together as one big happy family. So tomorrow it will be great if we go out there and accomplish what we're going to try to set out to do.
Q. Colin, there was a feeling back about the time you started playing in this, when Europe wasn't as strong top to bottom, that it used to try to maybe hide some of its weaknesses. Given your observations, if you will, of some of the American pairings this week, do you get any sense that the shoe is now on the other foot?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Very difficult to say. The strength of the American tour and the American team are very, very strong, and I think we've witnessed in the four rookies that they have played very well here. They might not have gained as many points as they would have liked the first two days, but at the same time, they have played very well.
And make no mistake, there's no complacency in our camp at all. This is will be a very, very tough battle tomorrow. And we must try and counteract whatever the American team have in their thoughts, and we look forward to it.
But I wouldn't say no, I wouldn't say that at all. I think it's still a very even contest. We've just played possibly better golf over the last two days than they have, but that doesn't mean that we might the third day, also. There's no complacency on our team at all.
We will go into our team meeting now with Woosie and discuss our order of our 12 with a lot of thought because it's a very, very important day.
Q. What effect has Woosie had on the team?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, only one, a great one. You know, he might be a short man, but he's got a huge heart and he's just been awesome.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Yes, you're right. He is a short man. He is a short man. (Laughter.) There's no question about that, Sergio. He is a short man with a very, very big heart.
SERGIO GARCIA: But I think he's grown about three inches this week.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I think he's growing, he is growing, he grew yesterday and he's grown today. He is taller.
SERGIO GARCIA: But no, he's been great. He's just been so thoughtful, thinking about everything that's going around, taking care of all of us players, trying to figure out what was the best, making sure that everybody got played on both days, and knowing that it didn't matter who was playing. He could do that because he knew his team was really strong.
So he's just been great, funny man, and, you know, we had a lot of good laughs in the team room. Hopefully we can even have bigger ones tomorrow.
SCOTT CROCKETT: Okay, gentlemen, there's a certain short man waiting for you.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: One last comment. Let's hope that Darren Clarke's won two points out of two thus far. Let's hope to hell that he can have three out of three and a fantastic tournament and welcome him back.
SERGIO GARCIA: Well said, well said.
SCOTT CROCKETT: Thank you very much, guys. (Applause.)
End of FastScripts.