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February 22, 2009

Fred Couples


FRED COUPLES: I thought it was going to break to the right. I just couldn't make another one at 18. You know, I was just trying to hit it right around the tree. I didn't really aim for the green and cut it. And I just hit it right in the tree.
You know, if I had hit solid and pushed it, it still may have caught the tree. But I was just trying to go right along with it. It didn't seem that hard. It was a perfect 7-iron.
And, you know, there's so much commotion. I'm hitting over cameramen because of the angle, and I think I just got a little loose. I hit a bad shot, and I just didn't give myself a chance.

Q. Were you still feeling good about being in that position?
FRED COUPLES: Oh, yeah. It was a tough shot on 12. Yesterday, I hit it up against the fence. You know, today I didn't get the back swing and I blocked it.
Other than that, I hit most of the greens and had pretty simple birdie putts inside the hole.

Q. (Indiscernible).
FRED COUPLES: Nobody made the putts. I sure didn't make one. But the greens were good. It was just hard. Everyone was bunched around, you know, 12, 13, 14 under. And Phil made a couple of bogies to give him a shot, and then he birdied the hole and made the birdie. But it would have been nice to at least have it on the green with a three putt for 70 feet, instead of shanking it.
But, I could have driven it in a better spot. I just on the second shot I hit everything fairly straight, and I wanted to hit it straight. All I had to do was pass the tree. You know, it was kind of a simple deal. I needed a nice shot underneath.
But, really, it came down to Phil not playing that well. And then me, the same old crap. I shouldn't say -- I mean every time I have a chance to play well, I seem to play okay.
If Phil had been okay on the front nine, he would have been 5 under and I would have been 3 over. But he drew well around the greens, and I just seemed to be very mediocre.
Not that I'm feeling horrible. I just don't make every three, four for par. But you can't catch up on Sunday. There are not enough holes.

Q. (Indiscernible)?
FRED COUPLES: No, because there were so many holes, 9, 10, 11. I hit the pin on 9, or thought I could get to it. Then when Phil bogeyed, he bogeyed 8. He bogeyed 7 to get to a couple over or 1 over maybe. I don't know. Eagled one.
I just was hanging around. I knew he was going to pull it off at some time, but he waited until the last couple of holes.
But, no, you know, straight up for putt for birdie on number 7. I did hit a good putt on 8 to get to the hole. On 11, I hit it close and I was within a couple of strokes.

Q. Can you talk about Phil coming back?
FRED COUPLES: Way to stay. He's fun to play with, and he's a true competitor, and he makes the game seem easy. When he plays bad he still gets it.
I mean, he didn't play well today, I don't even know what he shot. 1 over, is that what he shot? I just looked at the under par. So, he at one time was 3 over for the round. So I mean, you know. He had a couple on 17. And a beautiful 9-iron on 16.
So he was never going to lose the tournament. He was going to have a shot at winning the way he was playing. If he had played well, he would have won by 5 shots, but he didn't.
He knows what he has to do, and you know, playing poorly after 15 holes, he birdies 16, 17, and had a beautiful drive on 17. Hit a shot where he needed to. And made a nice six or seven footer to win.

Q. Could you sense any frustration from him on the front nine?
FRED COUPLES: No, no. I think he's working on his game. It's all the same. Just like you don't want to show anyone anything. You can tell it doesn't take a genius to figure out that he was struggling.
But, you know, a putt here or there would have kept him alive and he didn't make any. Otherwise he would have been fine. He missed, I guess, 12, and then totally lifted out on 13, the par 3. But, you know, he's not getting too close.

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