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September 14, 2005

Retief Goosen


GORDON SIMPSON: Welcome, Retief. You're here as the No. 1 seed, after losing one of your compatriots, Mr Els.

RETIEF GOOSEN: It's a shame Ernie is not playing, but he'll be back. Yeah, obviously I'm still here. But it's not a course I've particularly done well in, especially should I say a tournament. So, yeah, hopefully this week I can get something going in the first few rounds and get somewhere down closer to the weekend, better than I have in the past.

GORDON SIMPSON: Game seems to be in good shape. You won in the States in August and Asia and Europe in September, so clearly things are in good shape.

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, it is, that's true. I've hit the ball okay, but I've putted really well. I got the ball up and down a lot and that's what's won those tournaments for me. Hopefully I can continue putting and chipping well, which you need to do in match play. Obviously in match play you can shoot level par and win or shoot 10 under and lose. It's really how your guy is playing that you're playing against that day.

Q. What do you know about Kenneth Ferrie?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, Kenneth, obviously I just know him really from last year. I think he only got on to the tour last year, a couple years. He's obviously a very keen player and he's won this year and has done well in quite a few tournaments, obviously, to qualify for this event. Very good player. I know he's lost a lot of weight and working out a lot and trying to get himself into shape for this game and it's paying off.

Q. Why do the international players seem to have a different mindset than the Americans about flying across the world to play tournaments?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, it's I don't know. Obviously they live over there and their families are over there and they are playing for a lot of prize money every week. I feel that's probably the main reason for them not traveling, but yeah, we travel here and basically carry the flag for the European and PGA TOUR around the rest of the world. You're basically representing their tour over there as well as The European Tour. It just seems to work out better for our schedule, me and Ernie, living over here, and it just seems to be pretty easy to fly ten hours that way instead of ten hours that way. That's great that the rest of the world is sort of wanting us to play there and supporting us in the events. So we'll keep on supporting those events in the Far East and Australia and South Africa.

Obviously I enjoy when we play the events that we need to play in and want to play obviously enough events to keep our card and all of that kind of stuff and do well to try to win the Order of Merit.

Q. You enjoy being a global player don�t you? Why don�t others?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, that's true, I don't know, Tiger and Vijay and Phil, they obviously have their reasons. I think it comes down to the money for them. I mean, if The European Tour had the same prize money over here � they would play. And maybe their contracts are set up in a way that they need to play a certain amount of events in the States.

But it's a shame that they don't travel a bit more and come and play a bit more over here.

Q. Michael Campbell said that this event is more like a fifth major

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, definitely. You know, this event is a big victory in your books, it's been going for so long and a lot of great players have won it. It's a shame that top players don't have any desire to come and play and win this event. You know, you're playing for so much prize money this week as well. But that's a question that you'll have to ask them.

Q. Michael was commenting about concern for the game's image, players not coming

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, obviously, I think the guys, picking up the papers, looking at who is playing here and who is not playing here are wondering why you don't have the top players here.

I don't know, you know, why they don't want to come really. It's not a question I've asked them, but hopefully in the future they will start changing their minds a little bit on that.

Q. Inaudible

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, it's nothing really actually last week at the end of the week I sort of worked a bit on my golf swing, it's just a posture thing I worked on really, not really golf swing wise. But I've worked quite hard on my putting over the year and practiced my putting quite a lot and chipping. I feel that's been the reason why I've won the last three events is just I've made a lot of putts. That's what you need to do to win any golf tournament.

Q. Why haven�t you done better here?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, I don't know. For some reason just not really hit the right shots or get comfortable around Wentworth. It's a pity. I just look down the road and, you know, we play the PGA over here and this tournament, and I've just never been able to do anything around it.

You know, I have to say it comes down to not making enough putts around the greens. I've always really struggled reading these greens.

Q. How does moving the tournament up a month affect the course?

RETIEF GOOSEN: I was saying that to Colin this morning. I feel that the course is totally different than to what it normally is when we play The Match Play. Normally it's so soft that, you know, the greens are spinning so much and now it's totally different. It's nice and firm and the greens are as good as I've seen them over here.

So, yeah, the course is definitely going to play different, which hopefully will suit my game. Because I've always had to hit so many high shots into these greens in the past, and now that they are firm, I can hit more fuller shots.

Q. What's your Presidents Cup record?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Don't really know. I've done okay in it I suppose. Me and Vijay has done well in the past; me and Michael has played together; me and Mike Weir. I can't remember, last year I beat Mickelson in the singles, but not really sure what my record is on that.

Q. How do you set up your schedule for the year?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, really, my schedule is just about set till the end of next year. Yeah, you obviously go with the eight most important tournaments, the majors and the World events, and then you go a few events before and a few events after and then you go to the PGA and the bigger European Tour events, European Open, German Masters, all of those and that's how you work it out. And then you have weeks off and that's really how we work it out.

GORDON SIMPSON: Thanks very much, Retief, and good luck tomorrow.

End of FastScripts.

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