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March 15, 2009

Tiger Woods


Q. I think you finished 74th in putting and you're going to finish 10th; have you ever had a week like this?
TIGER WOODS: Oh, yeah, it's part of playing the game. But the good news is, I got better each and every day, my ball-striking, my feel got better each and every day. Today, I putted good today. I made two putts, but I felt like I'm hitting the putts better.

Q. Are you surprised you didn't shoot lower this week?
TIGER WOODS: No, I would have to say that I'm surprised that I got the feel for hitting shots so quickly.
You know, I've been away from the game for eight months, and then to come back and only play two matches out there, which is totally different than playing stroke-play; and, at altitude, too. So that kind of threw out the distance control.
And to come out here each and every day and progress, and get my feel of my short game, seeing shots, hitting shots; my distance control got better each and every day.

Q. Are you happy?
TIGER WOODS: I'm very happy with the way I played; I didn't say the way I finished. But the way I played, I hit the ball, as I said, a lot better than my scoring indicates.

Q. Hank was here today. Was that just a tune-up or you wanted him to look at anything?
TIGER WOODS: No, he had his own tournament up in Hilton Head. So he couldn't be down here, and then he's got an outing down here tomorrow. So it was kind of a fit for today.

Q. Can Hank fix Charles Barkley's swing?
TIGER WOODS: I hope so. I remember playing with Charles, he could shoot in the 70s, until someone told him that every great player has a pause at the top of their it golf swing, and that's not the case. As you know, you change direction, so obviously there's going to be a little bit of a pause. From then on, his game went south.

Q. A bit off-topic, you're a big NBA fan, who in your unbiased opinion do you like for the NBA MVP, and especially what are your thoughts on D-Wade?
TIGER WOODS: Well, D-Wade has now gotten himself into the conversation. He's doing more with less, obviously. But I think it's probably going to come down to LeBron and Kobe. Those two teams are going to be basically one, two, or three in overall record going into the playoffs, and what those two guys are doing is pretty impressive.
You can't take anything away from D-Wade, but MVPs are usually given to the guys who are actually have a better surrounding cast for some reason.

Q. I don't know if you can detach yourself any, but can you talk about how good it is for the game to have you back and Phil playing well?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I'm excited to be back playing again. It's been a while. It's nice to get back up there. And obviously Phil is playing a little bit better now, won one tournament, and obviously he's got a chance today to get another victory.
But overall, I think the game is in pretty exciting times. We've got new, young blood coming up with Rory, AK, Sergio is playing well, you've got Paddy winning two major championships; obviously with Phil and myself there, I think as a whole, I think the game is in good stead right now.

Q. (Did you hear what happened to Phil last night)?

Q. (Inaudible)?
TIGER WOODS: Heat exhaustion or food poisoning?

Q. Heat exhaustion.
TIGER WOODS: Wasn't that hot, was it? Tulsa was hotter. You know; you were all there.

Q. Can we know your opinion about Camilo Villegas?
TIGER WOODS: Camilo, he's a wonderful player. As we all know, he's got all of the talent, he's got two big victories at the end of last year and just a matter of Camilo getting some more confidence and basically getting more experience. He's just now getting out here, this is what, I think his third year out here, so just a matter time before he starts contending.

Q. You talked about how since the re-design of these greens that, as a memory putter, it threw you off a bit; was there a bit of that that went on this week? And assuming you get on Bay Hill and get on greens that you know, how much better can we expect with your ball-striking where it is?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I'm excited just the way the whole week went.
As far as the greens, you know, all of my pairings this week didn't make any putts. None of us made any putts. Ernie hit so many good putts today that went over the edge; and we were talking about it today, just the grain just affects it. It doesn't affect it, or it affects it; it's just different to how it used to putt.
What are you going to do? Just hit the putts better or hit the ball closer, one of the two.

Q. Given your past, your fans expect you to win every week no matter how long you were away; you say you're happy with the way you played, is that expectation unfair or does it weigh on you?
TIGER WOODS: No, it doesn't weigh on me. I'm happy with the way I progressed, but not necessarily happy with the way I finished, obviously. I didn't win the golf tournament and wasn't in a position to win the golf tournament. But hitting the golf ball this week, I got better each and every day, and my feel around the greens got better and just handling the environment out there got better.
I've been away so long, I figured it would take me a lot longer to get back. But you know this, week was a big week for me.

End of FastScripts

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