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April 24, 2009

Mark O'Meara

Nick Price


PHIL STAMBAUGH: Nick Price, Mark O'Meara, 32, 31, 63, 9-under par. You had it going on there on the back. With five straight birdies and 9-under. Pretty good score today. Maybe a comment from each of you about the round.
NICK PRICE: Actually a good partner today. You know, I started off well and made a couple of birdies, and Mark hit a couple of shots on the front nine, and then he played really well through 6 through 11, and then I birdied 12, so it was a really good team effort.
We probably left a few on the golf course, like I suppose a lot of guys out there, and a little disappointed with our finish, the fact we didn't birdie one of the last four holes, but all in all it was a good day, and you know, we felt -- or I felt anyway, that we needed to shoot somewhere under every day to have a chance to win this, so a good start.
MARK O'MEARA: It's always nice to be able to play with Nick. I mean I've known Nick for 29 years, or 28 years, and to see Nick win last week was special. And certainly I'm still searching for that, chasing it, but Nick pointed out I felt like I hit the ball pretty well today, and that's important to have both players play most of the day. And we were there, and I felt I missed a couple putts on 6 and 7 and 9 that were very makeable, for sure. And then Nick pointed out something about my stroke that I was a little quick off the ball, so I tried to adjust to that, and then I made a couple of putts. And Nick made a good birdie on 12, which kind of kept us going.
And you know, we could have got the ball closer to the hole in the last four holes. We didn't get it as close to the holes as we would have liked to, so I was a little disappointed not to make a birdie coming in, but 9-under is 9-under, and there's still two more rounds to go, and we've gotta keep that type of pace to where both of us are in play and having birdie putts. If we can shoot 9-under each round or better, we should have a chance on Sunday afternoon.

Q. Did either of you make any real long putts today or any good saves for par?
MARK O'MEARA: No real putt saves, but I think Nick made some on the second hole.
NICK PRICE: The second hole, and then I made a pretty nice one on 12, too. The one on the second hole was probably about 25, 28 feet. The rest of the putts we made were all probably five to eight feet, I suppose. 6 and 14. You made a good one on 14 as well. 13, the par-5. Got in there about eight feet, so.

Q. (Inaudible question).
MARK O'MEARA: When did you tell me that? On 10?
NICK PRICE: Yeah. It was 11.
MARK O'MEARA: Because I had -- I missed about -- I had a good birdie opportunity on 6 from maybe 12 feet behind the hole, 10 feet. And then I hit it like maybe seven feet on next hole for birdie. And then I birdied 8, and then I had it about eight, ten, nine feet on 9 for birdie.
They weren't very good efforts. Nick has played with me so much and watched, I mean this event comes down to really, you know, certainly good ball striking, but you gotta putt well, too, because you know the guys are shooting pretty good scores. There wasn't much wind out there today, as you know, and the course is in really good condition. The greens are receptive. They're as pure, as Nick pointed out earlier, they're really, really nice. They're good speed to make putts.
NICK PRICE: Yeah. Very, very pure, these greens.

Q. Anywhere else you go, you shoot 67.
NICK PRICE: Between the two of you, I think what happens, you know, is that you know your partner's in play. He has a good shot. That takes a lot of pressure off your putt.
So I think that's what's really important is to put two balls on the green in a reasonable distance, close proximity to the hole, and then you know, the guy who putts first knows that his partner's there and gives him a chance to free-wheel it, so it takes a lot of the pressure off.
But in a format like this, you should be making four or five birdies, in conditions like we had today, four or five birdies each, and you just hope they're not on the same holes. That's the big thing. Make sure you do them on different holes, you know.
And Mark and I, we had a great time last year, and I think when we finished last year, I said, do you want to do it again next year? He said yeah. And we'll do it again next year.
He's a really enjoyable -- our games are very similar, and so I sent him a text message after -- he sent me a text message on Sunday saying, "well done, congratulations." I sent him a text message saying, "I've broken the ice, now let's go do it next week together."
This format's a lot of fun. I just wish we had more events like this. I really do. The team events allow you to be a little more relaxed out on the golf course and not so focused on your own game. You know, you can interact a little more with the crowd and it's a lot of fun. I wish we had more.

Q. Do you feel momentum coming into this week based on the win? Is there a tangible kind of feeling?
NICK PRICE: You know, I think if it had been -- yeah, I do feel a certain amount -- I feel a lot more relaxed out there. I didn't hit the ball very well today for some reason. But I kind of figured it out toward the end of the round.
But you know, it's a different mentality this week. It's a shoot-out. That's exactly -- you gotta go and make birdies. It's not like you're playing out there trying to -- your partner's on the green in 20 feet or whatever. You take dead aim. And you know, you've just gotta rip everything. And I wasn't firing on all on the front nine and then I started playing a little better on the Back 9. So hopefully I'll sort things out for tomorrow.

Q. A couple of teams that have come through already today have said they probably need to shoot 10-under, 12-under each day just to keep pace at the top. Is that a conserve estimate?
NICK PRICE: Yeah. I would say 30-under. I don't even know what won last year. Was it 31? You know it's going to be 29, 30, 31-under, unless someone runs away with it. But I don't know what's leading, 10 now? You gotta think somewhere around there, unless we get some adverse weather, which it doesn't look like. Probably the best day you've had in Savannah all year today. Beautiful.

Q. What number is too far back? Is six or seven on the first day too far back? Can you quantify it that way?
NICK PRICE: If you shoot a 67, you're going to have to shoot a 59 or a 58 somewhere. And you know that. I think we shot 66 last year in the first round, and then we played pretty solid the last two days.
But you know, it's hard to chase out there. You really gotta -- you know, 4- or 5-under at nine is a prerequisite, I think. And we had two stretches, I think, today, one of three holes and one of four holes where we didn't have a birdie, which is, you know.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Okay. Good luck, guys.

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