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July 20, 2005

Retief Goosen


RODDY WILLIAMS: Retief, thank you very much for coming in and joining us, and welcome. I think you were third last time we were here two years ago; is that correct?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, I probably had a chance to win the tournament coming down the last four holes, I hit an 3 iron into the green at No. 15 and made par, the par 5. And 16, I hit it about three feet and missed the putt. And 17, I 3 putted for par. So I think I finished one shot or two shots behind, so definitely had a chance to win.

So it's good coming here this week and knowing that, you know, I can play the course, and I understand it's in great shape, the best shape it's been in, which is good news. Greens are a bit soft and the weather forecast is not going to be great, so scoring is going to be tough.

RODDY WILLIAMS: Different challenge to last week; it was hard, bouncy, running last week but completely different conditions this week. How are you going to adjust to that?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, it's going to be difficult to get used to hitting some clubs this week. Last week you've got to hit something that at least 20 yards short of the flag, and this week you have to hit something that lands ten feet past the flag in some places and spin back. It's going to be difficult to get some places where you hit enough club.

RODDY WILLIAMS: You had a fantastic third round, 66, but the final round challenge didn't quite materialize.

RETIEF GOOSEN: I had an awkward two 3 putts again in the first five holes, three 3 putts in the first eight holes and one chip in 2 putt, so 4 over after eight. Then I knew I pretty much had to get to a pretty good run again through 9 all the way through to 14, which I didn't really do. I birdied 9, I birdied 14 but I bogeyed 12. Really at the tournament I was trying to play well the last few holes to see if I could at least finish in the Top 10, and I finished fifth.

RODDY WILLIAMS: Was that a big disappointment, the final round for you?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, it was again, unfortunately off to a bad start bogey, bogey, and if I could have only had, you know, somehow stayed up there, had a start like Colin had at least, being a few under after nine holes, you know and give myself half a chance on the back nine, it would have been a bit more exciting. But in a way the last nine holes was a bit dull.

Q. Tiger seems to always be a step of everybody. He just played solid on the front nine.

RETIEF GOOSEN: You want to start off with a possibly maybe a birdie on the first and then a few good pars, and then the fifth is really a long par 4, the way it played with the wind.

And then you feel like 7, 8, 9, 10, the sort of holes you could make pick up another shot or so, and that's what he did. He played the course the way you feel he should play it and nobody else did.

Q. There's been talk since Sunday that Tiger has raised the bar once again on the likes the of yourself and Phil Mickelson and Ernie and Vijay have to raise your games to respond to that, how do you see yourself responding to the challenge of Tiger again?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, Tiger has a lot of confidence going at the moment again and he hit some good shots at the right times and that's how he feels he's a bit of a step ahead of us again, and, yeah, he's playing well. I wouldn't say Vijay is playing as well as he knows he can play and Ernie definitely is not playing as well as I know he can play. I'm probably not playing as solid as I know I can play, as well; haven't really played all that good this year. So, yeah, maybe we're lacking behind a little bit at the moment and need to find our games a little bit.

Q. Compare Sunday to the Sunday at U.S. Open, or are they quite different? I think in each case you had a bad start?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, I had a bad start at the U.S. Open and a bad start again this time, which is not really the way you want to start off. I probably hit the wrong club into the first and left myself a long putt and hit a good first putt and misread the second one coming home and missed that and then hit it in the bunker on the second. So, not the sort of start that you want.

But you know keep trying, every time I get in a major give myself a chance on Sunday, and eventually, hopefully, it's going to turn the tide and you start off with a couple of birdies and then things might be different.

Q. Is there anything wrong with your game at the moment, or is it just a case of putting it together on the right day?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Once again, I would say that it's my iron play and my putting is not as good. First of all, when the iron play is not good enough, you're leaving yourself long putts, and that's what I did, you keep leaving yourself 50 footers on those greens in windy conditions, it's not easy to 2 putt. First of all, I think I have to get the iron play better and give myself more inside 15 feet and then it will be easier to start making putts.

Q. Do you have a coach at all?

RETIEF GOOSEN: No, I haven't worked with a coach since '99. I've mostly I've had caddies that's pretty good players and they notice things very well. I'm not really a very technical player. I'm just sort of more of a feel player and we've worked on a few things, me and Colin (Byrne), last couple of weeks before the Open and it sort of started coming right again. Last week, I didn't play too bad, just two bad rounds unfortunately, but there's a bit of hope.

RODDY WILLIAMS: Retief thanks very much, good luck this week. Play well. Thanks very much.

End of FastScripts.

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