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August 8, 2008

David Toms


Q. How difficult is the golf course playing?
DAVID TOMS: It's very difficult. Part of the problem right now is trying to get the right club off the tee, much less get it in the fairway. The ball's rolling out, which is good for shorter hitters like myself, it's not playing so long as it did when I first got here early in the week.
But now, you know, trying to pull the right club to get the right bounce to get the ball in the fairway is you're not going to be able to score at all out of the rough.

Q. How great was the round today?
DAVID TOMS: I played a great round of golf today. I hit some good shots and when I didn't, I recovered well, I hung in there. I knew it was going to be tough right from the first hole and I just hung in there all day and I hit some really good bunker shots around the greens, capitalized on a couple of good iron shots that I hit in.
Just had a good solid day. One of those days in a Major Championship where you just grind it out. And luckily I wanted to shoot under par, especially when I got to 2-under with three holes to play but they were very difficult holes I had left. I made a mistake from the fairway on number 8, paid the price.
I made a nice par save on 9.

Q. How important is it to emotionally prepare when you're facing a course like this going into a tough day?
DAVID TOMS: It says a lot about yourself and how much in control you are of your emotions and your golf game when you play a golf course like this. You just have to hang in there. And you don't know what's going to happen. We had a tough day, especially last nine holes, it was pretty windy and started gusting the last few holes, and guys are going to have a tough time this afternoon trying to pull the club once they get the ball in the fairway.

Q. How are you physically?
DAVID TOMS: I feel good. Just having to stretch as much as possible and not overwork myself. Just something I've had to deal with really the last 18 months or so with the back issue. But I have my good days and bad days and so far this week it's been okay.

Q. How much of a victory is it to get under par in a round like the conditions today?
DAVID TOMS: Well, that's what you have to do in a Major Championship, you have to take those little small victories. Whether it's hitting a 490 par-4 in two when it's into the wind and just take that as, hey, I played great hole, or it's one round at a time, one hole at a time and to shoot under par today was pretty solid. I certainly would have taken that when I went to bed last night. And it's just one good round and obviously this weekend is going to get tougher and tougher. Looks like the weather is going to stay like this, cool and dry and the golf course is going to bake out if they don't put any water on it and continue to get more difficult.

Q. How tough has it been to kind of reconcile yourself to the fact that the way you feel is going to dictate a lot of things over the last --
DAVID TOMS: I think that's just part of the age factor. And 41 now, and certainly when you're -- I played at a high level for a long time and it gets frustrating when it affects my golf game, but at the same time I think I've had a very successful career and I feel like I still have a lot of good golf to be played, as long as I can stay healthy and get my confidence back.

Q. So talking about stretching longer, how long is that?
DAVID TOMS: Oh, no, it's just more about just staying loose and yesterday I had a tough time after the rain delay we were sitting around and I was actually sitting on the floor. There was so many people inside, I was having to sit on the floor, and had a little snack, and by the time I went back on the golf course I was pretty stiff and I missed the last five greens in regulation and made two bogeys and didn't finish up the way I wanted to. So that should tell you right there that I have to, physically I have to be ready to go when it's time to get back on the course.

Q. Is it going to be one of those things that you just are going to have to deal with?
DAVID TOMS: Yes. Absolutely.

Q. There's no like surgery or anything?
DAVID TOMS: No, no. I can probably take care of the pain but I'll know that it will be very -- I don't know that I would ever play golf again, especially not at a high level.

Q. Is it, did it all stem from the Winged Foot thing?
DAVID TOMS: No, I think it's more of a hereditary thing. My father and grandfather have the same type of degenerative disk in their back and from time to time it flares up and I don't want to use it as an excuse at all. Because I think as long as I put in the time and feel good, feel okay physically and put in the time in my golf game I'll still be fine. So it's something that I have to deal with, but I've gotten past it and I just need to get my confidence back and this would be a great week to do that.

Q. I know it's common out here to have those types of things; do you talk to Freddie very much or other guys who have had it?
DAVID TOMS: No, I don't think guys are really willing to talk about it because if it's something that affects their play, you know, year in and year out, I'm sure they have to answer the questions to people at home and the media and the expectations that they have of themselves, and for me it's just, I just try to take each day the best I can and work hard.

Q. Two guys with you who were struggling like that; do you have to have a little tunnel vision or do you even pay attention to them?
DAVID TOMS: No, I mean, yeah, obviously they were struggling, but at the same time neither guy gave up or gave in at all to the golf course. They were there on every shot grinding it out. So we were all doing the same. I was just scoring a little bit better than they were.
So, no, like I said, they were grinding it out to the end. Obviously Vijay didn't finish well on the last hole and John made birdie and then it goes to show you, John hit a 4-iron in there real close in the last hole on a very difficult hole and made a birdie. So they were trying all the way, just like I was. We're all three of us are good friends and so we had a good time playing together. The crowd was into it no matter how they were playing, so I tried to feed off that.

End of FastScripts

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