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October 24, 2008

Laura Diaz


THE MODERATOR: Wonderful, impressive round, lots of birdies. Can you talk about how the whole round went, tons of birdies, your irons were so impressive.
LAURA DIAZ: Well, first of all, I have my brother, Ron Philo, Jr., caddying for me this week. He was available to come with me to China. My husband normally caddies and he had to take our son home. So we have a little different mojo going on out there. My brother is a fantastic playing and we did a lot of working together on every club selection and every putt.
So he helped me really be committed and, I don't know, I was just able to drop some putts.
THE MODERATOR: When was the last time he died for you.
LAURA DIAZ: My second year on Tour at Wilshire Country Club. It was an interesting experience, to say the least. But we had a good time that week, too. You know, we're a lot older now, or I'm a lot older, and he's still the same age. It still is a lot of fun and we had a lot of fun out there.
THE MODERATOR: So your husband didn't come to China?
LAURA DIAZ: No. We had to make a decision whether or not to bring my little one with us to Maui last week, and if we brought him, then I would only be away from him for one week and if we didn't it would be two.
So we chose one week and then my husband go home with him, and my brother come out.
THE MODERATOR: I remember you caddied for him during the PGA Championship.
LAURA DIAZ: Everybody remembers that.
THE MODERATOR: You were pregnant.
LAURA DIAZ: Yes, the first year I had to beg and plead a little more because I was five months pregnant and it was going to be about a hundred there.
My brother was not in favor of me doing it because of the pregnancy, but after a lot of needling, he finally agreed that it would be okay. It was a fantastic week.
People ask what is my career highlight, and I always give two: One, caddying for him at the PGA, and one being pregnant, having my husband caddie at Solheim Cup.
So got two highlights, and now we've got a third.
THE MODERATOR: What year was the PGA when you caddied for him?
LAURA DIAZ: About three years ago, '05.
LAURA DIAZ: No, I caddied at Medinah, as well. It was at Baltusrol the first year.

Q. Does 63 tie your personal best round on the Tour?
LAURA DIAZ: I think I shot 62 in Toledo, Ohio, but I think 9-under is the best. Like it was a different part. So 9-under ties it for the score. I shot, I believe 62 at Toledo, the Jamie Farr Classic, three or four years ago.

Q. Was it a fairly easy 63?
LAURA DIAZ: I don't use the word "easy" with golf, at all. It was a very enjoyable 63. I felt very confident out there. I had a great pairing, played with Leta Lindley and Juli Inkster, and they are two of my good friends and it was just a lot of fun.

Q. The last time you won was back in '02?

Q. But last week you had a wonderful week. Have you been playing well recently, do you feel like your game is --
LAURA DIAZ: It's been a good year all around. There have been some good weeks throughout the season. Ever since I had my son, I haven't managed to get back into a place where I felt like I could win again, and this year has been a good year for that. I've put myself in position a lot.
So, let's go out and see if I can shoot lower every day.

Q. If you have this kind of success with your brother on the bag -- will it threaten having your husband on the bag?
LAURA DIAZ: I can't afford him. My husband comes a lot cheaper.

Q. What is it that he brings?
LAURA DIAZ: I think that the main difference between the two is that my brother has been a player all his life. My husband has only been around the game, seriously, in the last ten years really.
So Ron is thinking from a player perspective every shot. That's the main difference I would say. The interaction is just as great. My husband and I have great chemistry on the golf course, and so do my brother and I.
I just think that it's also -- I don't know necessarily that it's just because Ron is here that I shot 63. But it's nice to have somebody who is thinking the way I'm thinking, because he's doing the same thing on a regular basis; trying to go out and win golf tournaments. So he's got the same experience behind him that I do. So I think it's more just an experience situation.
My husband is a great caddie. We've worked together on and off for the last three years, and we've had great success together. He's the biggest support that I have, so there's definitely not a flaw in the relationship. It was just a different day today, that's all.

Q. (Regarding pictures in yardage book).
LAURA DIAZ: I carry this every week to calm me when I'm upset. I really use my son as my driving force out there. He's what I think about to keep my calm and to get me motivated. So I like to have as many pictures of him with me as I can.

Q. When you are on the course and your husband is caddying for you, who is taking care of the little kid, with you on the road?
LAURA DIAZ: My mother normally travels with us every week. Occasionally my father comes out and helps out, as well.
In addition we have a Smuckers' Day Care Program, four women who follow the Tour week-to-week come out and talk care of the children for the mothers on Tour.

Q. How is it for the kids to travel around everywhere?
LAURA DIAZ: I think it's a pretty incredible experience. My son had a passport when he was less than six months old, and I don't think there's too many kids who can say that. He will have traveled to more places than I did, and I didn't even get to travel until I got out here.
I think it's a pretty cool thing that he can -- when he gets old enough to really enjoy the places that we're going, I think it's an awesome experience. And I think for us, it's the only way we can do it. I wouldn't be able to survive without having my husband and my son with me on a weekly basis, because I just thoroughly enjoy being a mom and I would really miss having either Cooper or Kevin out with me.

Q. How do you not explain having won? In six years you've been on the Solheim Cup; what's the block?
LAURA DIAZ: I don't have a good answer for that except that I haven't been able to shoot the scores that win golf tournaments.
The year I got pregnant, I was having a pretty good year, and decided at that point to get pregnant. I had finished second or third at the Kraft, I don't know, or something like that, and felt like it was a good year to go ahead and get pregnant, and that was the year I played Solheim at about 5 1/2 months pregnant.
And then it has just taken me time to get my body back in shape; to get my golf back in shape; to handle trying to balance being a mother and a player and a wife, has been a challenge that I've faced for the last almost three years now.
I would also have to say that the passion that I once had that was only for golf has now been redistributed to being a mother and a wife and a player, and so I've got more places where I'm trying to excel in. And so it's made excelling out here hard; not to mention that the talent that is seen every week on the LPGA Tour has just gotten greater and greater.
So I think all of those things combined have made it challenging for me to get in the winner's circle again.

Q. What will it take for you to win this week?
LAURA DIAZ: You know, we've got 36 more holes to go and like I said, the talent on this tour is such that you could see multiple people go out and shoot the same score that I shot today. So we'll see what happens after another 36 holes, and I'd love to be the one in here on Sunday giving the press conference to you.

End of FastScripts

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