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July 14, 2005

Retief Goosen


STEWART McDOUGALL: Retief, 68, very good opening score in The Open Championship in conditions that have been a little different from the practice days so far. Give us your thoughts so far this morning.

RETIEF GOOSEN: It was fairly calm out there today, but a lot cooler this morning, so the ball went a lot shorter than it did in the practice rounds. It played quite long the second shots into the green, especially coming back on 15, 16, 17.

Q. Retief, last week in Loch Lomond, you were unhappy with your iron play. How did that go for you today?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, I'm still not hitting it as correct or as good as I know I can hit it. But today was nice. I hit a couple of good shots out there, which gives you a bit of confidence. I probably didn't drive it as well as I'd like to. I hit one really good drive and that was on No. 9. I kept it in play, and that was the main thing. But the big difference was I putted better today. I made a few good putts, and that's the difference.

Q. After your last major, how pleasing was it to come today and post a good figure like this?

RETIEF GOOSEN: It's great being at St. Andrews. I'm looking forward to the week and hopefully to get a good round in, a good tournament in and give myself a good chance on Sunday.

Q. Did you look up at the score board at any stage and see the damage that Tiger was doing to it at all? Do you do that?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, there are score boards everywhere. You're not not going to see it. So it's pretty much probably two, three score boards on every hole. Yeah, he obviously got off to a great start and that's what he needs.

Q. You've got a terrific record on this golf course. Your past experience here, did that give you confidence? Even though you're saying you're not hitting the ball so well, did that make you feel you could come here

RETIEF GOOSEN: Probably I'm not hitting the ball any better than I'm hitting the last few weeks or the last few months, but knowing the course so well, I know where sort of the bailout areas are, and know the greens very well and the breaks on the greens. That's why I say I putted well today and I was fairly confident with all the lines I picked out.

Q. Your shot on the 17th, you hit it hard off the tee and quite a long iron in, got a big bounce?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, yeah, I hit a 2 iron off the tee and I felt a 3 wood was going to run through down the left. And I hit a 2 iron slightly heavy off the tee. But we actually felt me and Colin sort of felt the wind was maybe hurting on the second shot, because it was blowing around the hotel there, it feels, into your face, but it's actually dead right to left or maybe even helping a fraction. And we hit the wrong club. I tried to hit a soft 5 iron in there, and way too long, I should have hit 6.

Q. It was a good save for you?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, whenever you walk off that hole with 4 or 5 you're very happy, I think.

Q. I hate to harp back to Pinehurst, but would the benefit of two or three weeks looking back on what happened there, could you describe what happened there, what went through your mind?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Pinehurst is pretty much history. I wasn't thinking about it at all. It was one of those rounds of golf I've been playing bad. And I've been very much looking forward to this week. Pinehurst has been completely forgotten.

Q. I know it's very, very early stages, but is there any telling what might win on Sunday, Retief?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, I haven't seen a long time forecast. I can't say. Obviously some of the flags will get tougher as the week goes on, but if the weather stays like this they won't be as low as last time, I think. You're probably going to have to get up there to 14 under, I think, if the weather stays like this.

STEWART McDOUGALL: Retief, thank you very much.

End of FastScripts.

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