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July 23, 2008

Gwladys Nocera


THE MODERATOR: Good morning, everybody. I'd like to welcome Gwladys Nocera who is currently the leader of the New Star Money List on the Ladies European Tour, which means she's number one in Europe. She's already won twice this year and had further six Top 10s. She also represents Societe Generale which is the presenting sponsor of this year's tournament and going forward for the next five years, as well as Lacoste, who is another sponsor of the tournament. First I'm going to ask some questions in English, and then after that there will be the opportunity to ask questions in French which will then be translated.
So, Gwladys, can you just start by telling us how it feels to be back at the Evian Masters.
GWLADYS NOCERA: Boy it is great as every year. I mean, it can't be better being here and being able to play such a big tournament. Also I saw the group, the pairings for tomorrow, and I'm playing with Natalie, so it's a pretty big thing for me. So I'm looking forward to the whole thing. I'm really enjoying my time here right now, so I hope it keeps on going.
THE MODERATOR: How satisfied were you with last year's performance?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Not. Not satisfied at all. I struggled on the first round, that seems to be something that happens often for me during beginnings. And I had a bad first round and I had to shoot two under for the second round to make the cut, which I did.
And after I tried to work on my game and get ready for the week after because I always think about what's next and always try to work as much as I can. I wasn't satisfied, so I hope this week I'll be satisfied.
THE MODERATOR: How much do you feel you've improved since last year?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Well, I don't know if I improved that much. I think my putting is getting really good right now. I just feel more experienced, and I'm just feeling really well in my life right now. And I guess for me it's really important because I feel comfortable on the golf course. I feel like what I'm doing is what I should do. So I'm pretty satisfied with everything I'm doing, so it's good.
THE MODERATOR: Will there be anything that you will do differently this year?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Yeah. I will try to play my game.
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Gwladys.

Q. Are you working on anything particular with your game and with your coach?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Well, I've been working with my coach for the last, I think, five years. We've worked a lot on my swing because I had some technical things to check and to improve. So I'm still working on that. My back swing and now we are working on my follow through to have a really masculine swing, more like a men's swing. I've been working more on my short game and my putting throughout the winter. But I still work on everything all the time, with him or without him, if he's not around.

Q. Is your coach Julian Leglise?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Olivier, yeah, he just got here, so I'm going to work now with him.

Q. When you say you want to make your swing more like a man's swing and you've been working on your back swing and now your follow through; can you be more specific?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Well, you know it's like when you look at a man hitting the ball, it's really solid on impact and it's more consistent, more control. That's what I'm looking for when I work.
I want something like, you see the girls and you see Paula Creamer, you see Annika hitting the ball really solid and really consistent and that's what I work on.

Q. As far as your fitness, do you have a specific fitness regime? I know it's difficult when you're playing every week, but have you been doing anything?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Yeah, I always work throughout the winter. This winter was different because I moved. So I've been running a lot, and I do abs and stretching. The year before I did a lot of weightlifting, but to do that you have to have a fitness room available next to your house and the time, which is not always the case. So during tournaments it's hard, but over the winter I work.

Q. Can I ask where you've moved from and to?
GWLADYS NOCERA: From Biarritz to Lausanne, so I live just the other side of the lake.

Q. I'd like to know if Isabelle Inchasupe is here, and if you've got a specific preparation with her for this tournament?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Yeah, Isabelle is my -- I don't know how you call it -- mental coach, and she's here. She got in last night. Yeah, we worked already. We talked about the tournament.
She was with me in Spain. She came with me to the U.S. Open, so she saw how I'm playing. She knows where I'm standing right now. So, yeah, we will talk again. We haven't decided the whole thing yet, but she's here.

Q. The prize money for the tournament has obviously gone up now. Does this make a difference the way you prepare for the tournament mentally?
GWLADYS NOCERA: No, for me it doesn't change anything. It's great for the tournament itself, and it's great for the Evian Masters being the greatest in the world. But for me it doesn't change anything. My goal is to play well, and if I play well, I make money. But I make money is not my first goal, so, for me it doesn't change anything.

Q. Is it still as difficult as before to cope with the pressure that the French public puts on the French players before a tournament?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Well, I think it's the wrong idea that we have or at least I have, because I don't want to talk for the other French players, but I think the French public is coming to support us and to help us to play better. We should not take it as a pressure, but we should take it as a plus. That's really what I want to do this year.
You know, I have a little French website. I have some people writing notes and saying, come on, keep on going playing well. And just for them, I want to show them that, yeah, I can play well this week.
So I don't want to put pressure on my self. I just want to take it as a plus inside me and say, okay, go for them as well.

Q. I know it's your press conference, but I'd like to ask you a question about Anne-Lise. Have you given her any advice or are you just going to let her discover the tournament for herself?
GWLADYS NOCERA: I think it's more of her choice. If he she has a question, I will answer. If she doesn't have a question, I will not. Anne-Lise is a really nice girl, really great player.
I think she needs to go through the tournament on her own. You know, maybe it will do her good, maybe it will be hard on her. But I think it's sport, and I think you have to learn on your own. Taking advice is good, but I think you don't need too many, because you need to live the thing on your own.
She's been asking questions. She said, Tell me where to go and where to not go. I said, Yeah, but you will find out on your own. But if she needs me, she knows I'm here.

Q. You're number one in Europe. What do you need to go to a higher level?
GWLADYS NOCERA: I need to play well during big events. I need to take the big events as number ones, and not put too much pressure on myself.
Well, you know, I come from far. I know I can play really good golf, and my biggest handicap is myself, because sometimes I don't trust myself. This week I want to do it. I really want to trust myself. I know I can hit the ball well. I know I can putt well. So I think it's just the problem of confidence, and, hopefully, I'll pass that step now.

Q. Does that mean go another step and play for the Q-card in the U.S.?
GWLADYS NOCERA: I have, I think the deadline for the entry for Q-school is in August, soon. But it seems like I won't go this year.
I'm feeling good on the European Tour. The European Tour is getting big. We have more and more tournaments. We have more money, more players, young players, coming with big hopes, and, you know, pushing the old ones like me to play better.
So I start to believe that you can be a great player if you play just in Europe. I think my goal is going to be to for the next six years work really hard to be not only the number one in Europe, but a good player during big events. So I don't think I will go to Q-school.

Q. You say for the next six years; that means six years you've decided to stop?
GWLADYS NOCERA: Well, you know, I'm 33. I'm thinking 6 years is 39. Maybe when I'll be 40 I'll be a little bit tired of traveling all the time and going to tournaments all the time. I don't know yet. I'm thinking six, seven years and I'll start doing something else - always in golf, but maybe something else. But I still have some tournaments to win.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you very much. Wish you all the best for this week.

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