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September 26, 2007

Colin Montgomerie

Justin Rose


GORDON SIMPSON: Justin, nice to be back here in Europe after your sojourn in America. How are you feeling about your game?
JUSTIN ROSE: It's a busy time year, obviously. I've certainly been busy, contending with this part of the season, but actually four in a row coming up, and I think I am fresh, the time off I've had through forced layoffs, I'm hoping will stand me in good stead for the remainder of the year, where I could or should be one of the freshest players really out there.
GORDON SIMPSON: You are playing under Nick Faldo this September, presumedly you would like to be playing under him next September as well?
JUSTIN ROSE: No doubt. Obviously The Ryder Cup points started, and it's exciting and it's definitely on my radar and I think is a goal of mine. And for the first year I've made it a priority as such, something I'm hoping to achieve.
GORDON SIMPSON: Some of your contemporaries have beat you to the punch - playing in Ryder Cup?
JUSTIN ROSE: I would say my world rankings being such, I have found it difficult to be a member of the European Tour, and I am in a situation where playing in Europe is obviously more of a possibility, which then puts The Ryder Cup on my radar, where I had other issues to contend with previously.

Q. Can you talk about where you grew up and watching Nick Faldo be such a legend, and how it is to be a champion now?
JUSTIN ROSE: I think for the British and English players, Nick is the most successful, and his six majors are the benchmark, if you like, and I think we've all admired what he's done, definitely myself being at age 27 I speak for the other guys around that age group, he was the doing it when we were at an impressible age. So there is no doubt playing on his team is obviously a privilege, but at the same time, you know, we're able to learn from him, as well.

Q. Do you know him well?
JUSTIN ROSE: I've gotten to over the past couple of years. His role as changed since he's semi-retired from competitive golf. I've gotten to know him better, and obviously since he is doing the TV stuff in America I've gotten to know him better.

Q. Is he helpful and available?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think he's able to do that now, and I think it's great.

Q. Inaudible
JUSTIN ROSE: I think I'll see how it goes, the team environment, what goes on in the team room. It's like an insight. I don't think it's going to necessarily be the be-all-end-all, but I don't think it's necessarily who performs brilliantly on the golf course, because that can come and go. I think it's maybe a little bit of who is a good team player, if you like, and that means on and off the golf course.

Q. As the leading player here on the world ranking do you feel any extra pressure on you?
JUSTIN ROSE: I don't really mind who gets the points, but we all go out there wanting to win our individual games, and at the end of the day that's all you can focus on. You can't necessarily control your teammate's performance, so each member of the team has to go out and win it.
When it comes time to tee it, up you have to take care of your own ball, your own business, so it's always the case I'm going to feel pressure to do well, and it's self-inflicted. Sometimes there is added pressure by being in a team environment that you're not playing for yourself, which you are so used to virtually every other week of the year, but now it's for the guys as well.
From my point of view, I want to be an asset to the team, but I don't see that because I'm the highest-ranking player there is necessarily an expectation. In fact, you're probably more of a -- on the other team's radar, so I think you have to go out there and realise that and realise that no game is going to be easy.

Q. What do you remember about Olly and Padraig falling out in 2003?
JUSTIN ROSE: Remind me again, briefly. (Chuckles.)

Q. They had a disagreement at El Saler?
JUSTIN ROSE: I don't remember -- oh, goodness, of course I do, yeah, yeah, yeah, that's right! (Chuckles.) I think we're all programmed once Thursday comes that whether it's intense or whether it's meant to be fun or whether it's maybe a serious tournament, I think we're all programmed to want to win, and you click into a "normal mode,"and that's the mode of wanting to do the best you can. You want to beat the guy you're playing with or playing against.

Q. What does Nick bring to the job?
JUSTIN ROSE: I think situations chitchatting with him, you pick up the little bits of information, and I think it's kind of reassuring to know what he did in his prime is not necessarily something that's unachievable. He went about his business methodically and simply and executed very, very well, and did that under pressure.
So if you break it down to what's required to win Majors, it's not something that you can't get your head around, it's not a mystic secret, and I think it's reassuring to realise that he was very single-minded obviously, but went about his business.
I think he executed well under pressure, from what I can see, had a lot of positive self-talk or has pushed himself, and ultimately that was the difference between him and his peers at that time.

Q. Inaudible.
JUSTIN ROSE: I think he wants to win at whatever he does, and he'll find a way to do it, hopefully, at whatever he does. Whether that's adapting to the -- what the actual role requires -- and I think obviously being a captain is a role where you try to get the best out of 10 or 12 other guys rather than necessarily yourself. So it will take a whole different skill set, but I'm sure he's aware of that.

Q. Inaudible.
JUSTIN ROSE: I think that's what you -- I think he will, definitely, and he's opened the channels of communication to all the players and said, "Listen, over the next year or so, anything you guys need, I'm here for you." So at this stage -- I'm talking down the road, with this week as well, getting a relaxed vibe, and that's reassuring for the players, and that's good. So far so good!

Q. You are missing Ian Poulter's wedding?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, that was a shame, just timing. He's obviously a great friend of mine; we go way back. He's probably the guy that -- both of our careers have developed together. I was on the Challenge Tour when he was on the Challenge Tour, so it's been nice to be together, and it would have been great to have been at his wedding, but my wife will be there, and I'll tell you all about the goings on.
GORDON SIMPSON: Colin Montgomerie is with us. Colin, you get to play this time - no captaincy involved!
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: This is the tenth year, and eight years I was involved as captain, and it's nice to come back as a player and allow, you know, others to take responsibility. I suppose it's only right that Seve is the captain of the European team, and Seve having retired from the game, he needed another sort of non-playing captain, and I think the obvious choice was Nick, so that was fine me, having not retired yet.

Q. You enjoy the cut and thrust?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I enjoy the match play, and I look forward to playing over the next few days.
GORDON SIMPSON: Questions of Colin or Justin?

Q. What did Nick say last night?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Not having been there and arriving at one o'clock this morning, I didn't know what was said, but it was obviously for the rookies anyway, and I wasn't involved.

Q. What's your excuse for being late?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: There is no excuse at all. I left and landed here at 11 and got to the hotel half past 12. There was no excuse; that's what happened. No, I just arrived late. (Chuckles.) I arrived in plenty of time for the Pro-Am.

Q. Just your usual preparation?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Normal preparation, that's what I would want of my own players, and that's what I would want of myself. No dissension, I just arrived later than some. (Chuckles.)

Q. Have you got over Sunday?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Apart from saying that it was great to see two English players, if you like, at the event, and they had a great score, 65, was always a favorite, really, to go into the last day and proved it and had a great score. Birdie 16, eagle 17 and par the last is a great finish.
Under pressure, I suppose, having taken this week off, if you like, to get married, and best of luck to him, and a lot of pressure on him, and he did very well to finish in second place. Great performance by a British player.

Q. Who would you have picked had you still been captain?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: If I had been captain, I would have had an extra -- I'm proud to say I'm not! I would have picked, as I have done over the last four years, the next guy in the world rankings, who would have been David Howell.
JUSTIN ROSE: Wouldn't have been a bad pick.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Wouldn't have been a bad pick at all.

Q. Inaudible.
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: No. I just feel it is, it is a pity, this event has a fantastic potential as an event, and I think it is good that we have the players that are playing, but there are players that aren't playing, and it is a shame that it hasn't attracted strength for the first time really that people have opted out of a team event.
It is a shame, but it also gives opportunity for a younger crowd to show themselves in front of Nick, especially, being now the current Ryder Cup captain, it gives them a great opportunity for themselves to show Nick that they can compete under pressure. And I'm not saying this is The Ryder Cup team, but it's definitely game on at the first tee, definitely, and it does give opportunity for younger crowds. So it swings both ways.

Q. With the FedEx Cup coming into the equation, do you see problems like this happening in the future with the Ryder Cup and --
JUSTIN ROSE: I think it puts the squeeze on the FedEx Cup next year, I think, next year. If you're going to prioritize -- not having played in the Ryder Cup before, I'm not in the best position, but I would prioritize The Ryder Cup over one of those four events, for sure. That's why some of the guys didn't play all four of those events, because coming on the back of U.S. PGA, it's a tough run of events. But I don't think The Ryder Cup is in any jeopardy.

Q. Colin?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: It's not fair for me, because I'm old, but it's fair for Justin, who will be on the Ryder Cup team -- how old are you?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well, that's fine, get on with it.

Q. Seriously, it is a problem?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Fine, but as Justin has rightly said, The Ryder Cup stands its own two feet. It just happens to finish or starts after the TOUR championship finishes. It's in America. They're playing in Atlanta and flying to Kentucky. We have to fly across the pond to get there. So if you can't go from Atlanta to Kentucky to the Ryder Cup, you've got a problem.
JUSTIN ROSE: I feel like if you don't play well the first week or something, that would be a situation where you would have to look at taking one of those off to keep the standard of play up, so, yeah.

Q. Inaudible
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: That could be an advantage. That could be an advantage for The Ryder Cup.

Q. Pity about Padraig not being here?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Obviously the Open was a fantastic win, and is he playing next week? Hope so. So that's another big week, and we'll see what happens. They're both playing in the World Match Play? Both of you? As long as I play you in the final? If we do, then it means Padraig's out. I could play him in the first round? Okay!

Q. Inaudible
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: That's encouraging, isn't it? You know, we've got a great team. I can speak for our team. I think it's great that we have a good run of youth and also experience, and I think it's fine. Me being the youth! (Chuckles.)
GORDON SIMPSON: Good luck tomorrow.

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