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July 8, 2007

Tom Watson


CRAIG SMITH: A gracious Tom Watson.
TOM WATSON: Well, I guess you can write the story pretty easy, when I make double bogey at 11, par-5 which is reachable in two today, that was a real wake-up call right there that the golf course wasn't going to give in very easily.
And bogeys on the next two holes, a lousy 3-putt at 12 and not getting the ball up-and-down from the back at 13 was kind of a harbinger for the rest of the day.
I hit the ball in the rough too many times, and today I got my just reward hitting the ball in the rough. I hit the ball in the little fairway bunker at 11, and it cost me a double bogey.
I hit it on 15. I hit it just through the fairway and in the bunker there and ended up in an awkward lie and ended up making double bogey there. I had to put the ball in the fairway today and I didn't do it enough times, and that was the killer for me.

Q. How much of a factor were the conditions today?
TOM WATSON: Conditions were tough. They were not easy. But you should be able to hit a fairway with a 3-iron, like on number 13 there. I missed the fairway there, and now I got a flier lie and downwind, downhill, and I didn't play a very good shot and didn't judge it very well. I hit the ball over the green there.
So the putter didn't feel very good even though I made some putts today, but that's the way it always is.
I can't blame that. I just didn't have it the back nine. I just put the ball in trouble way too many times to have a chance to win this golf tournament.

Q. Physically, did you feel okay?
TOM WATSON: I'm fine, yeah. No problem there.

Q. When you got to 9-under, what thoughts were going through your head?
TOM WATSON: Well, when I got to 9 under, I said, let's play the back nine like I played it yesterday. I played it well yesterday.

Q. It was quite a Watson par on 14. Could you talk about that. That looked like it kept you in it still at that time?
TOM WATSON: Yeah, again, at 14 I hit a perfect drive, it hit that side slope and kicked straight left in the rough, and I had my feet -- my feet were below the ball so I couldn't cut the ball into that cross wind. And then I hit a lousy shot over the green to get where I was.
But I made a great up-and-down. I was on the down slope of the bunker, and I got it up there and made a good putt.
15, I'm still in it. I thought that I could make some good swings coming in. I made a pretty good swing, I thought, at the 15 tee, but the wind got it, and maybe it was the wrong club; a 3-wood is probably the wrong club. It was probably a 2 Idea off the tee today there.
I didn't judge that shot very well. So as I said, my judgment this week was off quite a bit, and that's what links golf does to you. And this golf course plays a little bit more like a links golf course today than it did the first three days.

Q. How much will this (Inaudible.)
TOM WATSON: Well, 43 ain't very good. That's disappointing.

Q. When you think about missed opportunities, how many more times something like this will come along or not?
TOM WATSON: No, I have never done that. Never done that.

Q. That second shot I think on 15, that was a really rough spot there. There wasn't much you could do there, was there?
TOM WATSON: I probably could have hit a lot more lofted club. I was trying to get to the front edge of the green there, and I felt I could get the ball up high enough to get over that bush in front of me, but I couldn't.

Q. What did you hit there?
TOM WATSON: I hit a 7-iron.

Q. Tom, it was difficult out there today. Do you think it was a fair test of golf?
TOM WATSON: Yeah, it was a fair test. There was situations you had to really think, like 11 -- or I mean 10, you had to hit driver there to have a shot at making a birdie or getting the ball close to the hole. If you laid back, you couldn't stop the ball anywhere near the flag stick. So you had to play that type of golf. That's links golf. That's what I like about this golf course.

Q. (Inaudible.)
TOM WATSON: That's what I have to look at. I mean I have to look at why I failed and why -- what caused my golf ball to do what it did, to go to the right too many times. There was some swings there maybe I should have aimed further left. Maybe it was just as simple as that, because I didn't feel like I made that many bad swings.

Q. You've had three second place finishes. Is this still a tournament you can win? And I know how much you want to win it, but can you just come back next year and try it again?
TOM WATSON: That's all I can do. I just -- it's a very special tournament for me, and I had it in my grasp. I had the reins, and I lost the reins at -- I lost the reins at 13.

Q. (Inaudible.)
TOM WATSON: This is a tough golf course.

Q. (Inaudible.)
TOM WATSON: Well, the only thing I was concerned about was Brad Bryant, and he wasn't faltering. He played a great round of golf today. He shot 68, and under these conditions, that's -- this is a tough golf course. It's not an easy golf course.

Q. Do you think what happened at 13 was a direct result of what happened at 11?
TOM WATSON: Yeah, it was -- that was a real disappointment at 11, making, taking four to get down from the front there. And I hit a bad shot with a 9-iron. Didn't hit that bad a chip shot, I thought. But that grass is really wet and sticky there. I didn't judge that very well. I came up short. And I 3-putted from the fringe there. That was no good.

Q. You're playing at Muirfield but not at Carnoustie?
TOM WATSON: I'm not playing Carnoustie; my daughter is getting married.

Q. But you are going to Muirfield for the British Senior?
TOM WATSON: Yes, the British Senior Open.

Q. Is Brad Bryant a guy -- when he was on the Regular TOUR did you ever have any encounters with him, any --
TOM WATSON: Oh, he was Doctor Dirt. But he always had a happy disposition. And so he's -- he's a fine player. He hit some shots last year when he hit that shot from underneath in the rough at 18 at Oak Tree, wow, what a shot that was. And then he makes a putt for birdie. He's go the some game. He's got more game than I do.

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