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April 5, 2009

Fred Couples


Q. Fred Couples, the you beat the field scoring average. I know you're disappointed. How do you look at it?
FRED COUPLES: I am disappointed. I felt like I needed a couple birdies, I made bogey the last three holes. I'm happy with the way I played. Obviously, a lot of people out there supporting me, but I just couldn't make any -- too tough.

Q. It came down to the numbers because the way I looked at it, you played 28 holes yesterday, 26 today. A lot of golf for two days. Are you tired?
FRED COUPLES: I wasn't tired on 16 waiting to putt. Then after I 3-putted I got a little more tired. Bogeyed 17 I was exhausted, now I'm finished. You know, they're hard holes. But I haven't played 54 holes in that short of span in a long time. I'm pretty tired. My back is holding up, so I think it's nice.

Q. What about the emotions? You mentioned it before we talked about this yesterday. Coming out here, you told me that no matter what you do, they're going to cheer for you out here.
At any point does the emotion get in the way when you come to a place like Houston where you have so many connections?
FRED COUPLES: No, not really. It did when I won. If I would have won again today, it would have been good. Main thing for me, even I come here, I have, thank God, lots of people follow me around -- not as many as I used to -- pretty loud. "Go Cougars, Cougars, Cougars, Cougars." It was pretty fun for about 70 holes. There's no way I could have birdied 17 and 18.

Q. Another place you play well Augusta. Give us some kind sense what you expect for yourself next week.
FRED COUPLES: Well, you know, I felt pretty good about my swing. I worked on it pretty hard for the last seven days since I got into town with Paul, and I think if I get a few practice rounds, I know it's going to be cold, so I'm going to kind of hopefully get ready.
It was good today. I wish it wasn't quite that hard because I think I could have maybe done a little better without the wind, but I got it around and I look forward to next week. It's my all-time favorite place.

Q. You and everybody else. Fred, that was a very, very difficult golf course today.
FRED COUPLES: Yeah, it was awfully hard. Lot of left to right winds for me. I got the ball around very, very well today. I made a bad bogey on the 8th hole, the par 5, and, you know, that took a little wind out of me, but I birdied 10 and got it going.
I knew J.B. was in the clubhouse, and I had a lot of holes left. I made a blunder on the other par 5, 13th, 14th hole, whatever it is, and I had a very easy chip for eagle or birdie and I made par. You know, the last holes are hard. Didn't play them very well.

Q. 13th hole is a par 5. You played an awful lot of golf this week. Because of the wind situation on Thursday, you essentially played 54 holes on Saturday and Sunday. Was fatigue a factor at all?
FRED COUPLES: Actually, I'm tired now. It worked out in a good way because I played a lot of golf and I played pretty well. I didn't make any bogies yesterday and this wind today.
You know, like I said, I hit a horrible drive on 8. Let the wind get it. When you've got 5, 6-footers for par, you're not going to make them all.

Q. Good luck.
FRED COUPLES: Thank you.

Q. You mentioned after The Masters you may not play again until the Champions Tours. Does it make it more likely or less likely on days like this?
FRED COUPLES: There's a lot of tournaments I'm not going to play. I'm going to play in TPC, and you know, two other ones, but I'm going to take a lot of time off.
You know, it was fun. I played horrible last week. I came down here and worked on my game, and Paul gave me a lot of help, and I hit the ball well for four days. Even today it was -- it's disappointing to not hit a few shots when you have to, but other than that, I got it around nicely, and it kind of makes me want to play. I'm playing next week, so I'll be excited by Augusta.

Q. Fred, how much does it help when everyone is cheering for you after every hole?
FRED COUPLES: Yeah. It doesn't help me when you're 240 into a left-to-right wind, you can't reach the green on the par 4. But it's always fun. Going to school here was a blessing. It's where I really learned how to play and become a good player.
Coming back, I think I missed it a couple years, but now I have Champions Tour event to come back and play in The Woodlands. I'm sure I'll have more people again.

Q. You talked yesterday about how this wind just takes such a mental and physical toll. Did it finally catch up with you?
FRED COUPLES: I think, you know, I knew J.B. Holmes was in the clubhouse, and I knew I had -- not birdieing the 13th hole was a huge, huge mistake. Couple other good shots I hit in there. I bogeyed the last three holes. They were hard, and it's a tough course out there.
But for 69 holes I think I lead the tournament for a little bit of it, and it's a good feeling. I'm really tired. 54 holes in the last couple days really killed me, but at the same time, I played a lot of golf and I played well.
So I kept it going. But the finish is very sour but, you know, from where I've been playing, it's pretty good.

Q. You realize two Top-5 finishes on the PGA Tour for a guy who says he's ready for the Champions Tour.
FRED COUPLES: Yeah. I know. I get a little down on the way I'm playing. Actually, I think maybe I think I'm better than I really am. I know I can play golf like anybody else, but I think I should do it more often. If I could play like this, it's certainly more entertaining, that's for sure, but I'm ready for the Champions Tour. There's no doubt. I will have much more fun trying to go through that.

Q. You have a date next week?
FRED COUPLES: I'll go to Augusta with bells on. My favorite spot.

End of FastScripts

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