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September 26, 2009

Paul McGinley


STEVE TODD: Paul, you said this morning it was another fine performance, but even better this afternoon.
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, I'm obviously very, very pleased, and we all are in the team room. It's been a great day. We have won every series so far, and we have just had a team meeting and that's one of the points I stressed tomorrow.
Similar situation to where we were, where I was in Detroit with Bernhard Langer. Obviously not the same numbers, but the same kind of situation where we were very well ahead going into the singles, and I pretty much gave the same speech that Bernhard did. It is important that we go out tomorrow and win the series again.
STEVE TODD: I'm sure leaving no stone unturned as you have done all week, you'll be stressing not to take it for granted to the boys tomorrow; there's still a lot to play for.
PAUL McGINLEY: Absolutely. We are aware of how strong their team is. They have played so well and we have counteracted that. We are very well aware that all of the guys are capable of shooting really low numbers tomorrow, and if they get the ball rolling early and in terms of winning matches, you know, that ripple effect, that momentum can kick in for them and puts a lot of the pressure down the end for us.
I don't want that to happen. Is the draw here yet?
STEVE TODD: We haven't got it yet, no.
PAUL McGINLEY: I put my team in and I think Thomas has, too. I could talk better if he has and the draw is in. Could we find out, just to see if he put it in? If he has not, I can't talk as literally.
Anthony Wall was a problem and that's why I couldn't discuss last night. He did have an injury, he's been a stalwart, a huge player for me, and it was a big blow for him to hurt himself like he did. We did not think at the time that it was as serious as it turned out to be. We thought that him sleeping on it would he be okay for the afternoon -- it's not out yet, okay.
We thought that him sleeping on it would give him an opportunity to have a rest in the morning and then play in the afternoon, but he went to hit some balls this morning and it was clear. He gave me lots of notice and we discussed it.
So he rested all day today. He's had physio all day today, two or three times today, and to be honest I think he's got about a 50/50 chance of playing. So we'll see tomorrow.

Q. If he doesn't, what happens? Does Thomas get to collect once he pulls out?
PAUL McGINLEY: Well, each captain puts in an envelope with a player's name in it and whoever Thomas has put in the envelope drops out of their match and their opponent goes in to play. So it's the same as the Ryder Cup and it's a half-point each.

Q. Simon Dyson?
PAUL McGINLEY: I'm hopeful he will play. I'll be surprised if he doesn't. He was on his last legs. His legs were all jelly. As you know, he's an absolutely -- he's a hyperactive guy. He expends a lot of energy. He's been colossal the first two days and even so this morning. And he just took a lot of energy out of himself.
As much as I talk about energy all week in the team room, try to conserve it, he's an extreme case. He runs his battery down very quick and I think the fact that he was sick for 36 hours between Wednesday and Thursday morning, he didn't give himself enough time to recover and his battery is not as high as it normally was, and as a result the battery drained very quickly with the energy he put into the first two days, and indeed, this morning. He was really in a desperate way, and he did really well to finish the match the way he did.
So we left him out today, but I've sent him away. He got some physio when he finished. Went to see the doctor and he's been in bed since about 3.00. I've been in touch with him. Everything's fine. He watched it on TV and he's buzzing. So we are looking forward to hopefully him recovering and he'll be strong enough to play tomorrow. If not, we are in a problem and we lose a point if -- the envelope is for one match; if two guys withdraw, we lose one point.

Q. With all of the experienced players that there are here, would you expect Chris Wood to be the player with 100 per cent record?
PAUL McGINLEY: To be honest, I didn't know a lot about Chris's game before I came here. I had never played with him. But I've talked to a lot of people about him who have played with him, his caddie. I've watched his stats. The caddies have given me a huge amount of information, you know, unbiased information.
So I had a good view mentally of what his game was. I had not seen it myself, but mentally I had a picture of what his picture was. And he's turned out better than what my picture was, hell of a player, competitor and brilliant short game, and he's impressed me a lot, like a lot of my guys are.

Q. I guess you don't finish to finish in the Top 5 in The Open the last two years --
PAUL McGINLEY: Absolutely. You don't fluke those kind of results, at least not twice anyway.

Q. Can you think of any recent British and Irish putters who putt as well as he seems to?
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, he's got a great technique as well, too. The pace of his putts is wonderful. I've seen him make a couple of slippery putts, and they just miss; and that's a sign of a great putter he doesn't knock it six, seven feet by, which he easily could have done.
You know, I've put him with very good partners, you know. I've looked after him. I've made sure he's with good partners. Anthony Wall was probably playing the best golf of all our team coming in here and I knew that. He just had a good finish in Germany. I played with him recently. I've seen the kind of playing he was. I played with him in the Royal Trophy in the past. I knew how good a partner he was. And I had to look after -- the rookies, I felt I had to look after. And Chris is certainly one that I thought Wally would be a great partner for him, and that turned out well.
And then when I took him away from Anthony not playing this morning, obviously what a better partner than Ross Fisher. I mean, he's brilliant.

Q. Have you been impressed by yourself so far this week?
PAUL McGINLEY: Have I been impressed? No. I haven't even thought about how that's gone. I've just done what I believe in and what I've seen and what I've learned from experience over the years. I don't know, I haven't sat down and analysed the whole week yet but just acting on my instincts of what I've learned over the years from great captains. I've been very, very fortunate, the captains I've played under, not just Ryder Cup, but Royal Trophies and Seve Trophies, too, has been huge.
We have talked a lot in the team room this week about the spirit of Seve, and this tournament is Seve's tournament. I think we really played with his spirit this week. We have really -- some of our matches have just been phenomenal the way the guys have played and been buzzed, and it's just great to see. It's so refreshing to see, and great to see, and makes me envious that I wasn't out there in the middle of them all.

Q. How much satisfaction do you get yourself from this role?
PAUL McGINLEY: I get satisfaction. I get satisfaction that so far in terms of pairing up the pairings so far, things have gone great for me. And my instincts about what I have learned over the years seemed to have proven right. But we are not over the line yet, and I don't want to talk from a position of -- I can talk from a position of strength but not a position of having won.
And the singles is yet to come. I've put in my team based on strategy for tomorrow, what I think the strategy should be. And we'll see if that proves to be right tomorrow. You know, we'll talk about it tomorrow. But so far my strategy seems to have gone very well, and you know, I don't want to talk too early yet because we are not over the line. I am very well capable of what these guys are capable of doing. They have been very strong favourites all week. We have been very aware of that. And they are a wounded animal and very dangerous and you know, I have stressed that to my team, very much so that we are not over the line.
Sorry, just to finish on that, just energy for rest of the day is very important, keeping your energy for tomorrow. That's one of the things we spoke about, and we have contained our energy all week. We arrived here much later than The European Team and practised less with a view to being strong come Saturday, Sunday.
So, you know, I'm hoping that that strategy works out well tomorrow, as well, too.

Q. Was that something that you thought of, arriving late?
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah. Tuesday.

Q. As opposed to?
PAUL McGINLEY: I don't know when they came. I don't know.

Q. You said you played with Bernhard recently and he gave you a piece of advice. Are you prepared to tell us what it is?
PAUL McGINLEY: Communication. That was his advice. That was No. 1. But I already learned that from Sam. To be honest most of the stuff I'm doing in captaincy I'm doing from Sam. I've been very, very fortunate to have him as my first captain. I've learned the most from Sam more than the rest. Not that the others were wrong, but the others did what Sam did. Sam was my first introduction to captaincy, and I learned a lot from him.

Q. How do you temper the frustration of not being out there playing?
PAUL McGINLEY: Well, yeah, I mean, how have I tempered it -- I just see myself in a different role. I've seen myself that way. I don't wear a hat. I always wear a hat on the course for example. I don't want to have an earpiece in my ear at the same time, because then I still want to be a player and I don't want to go down the road of being an official and all that.
So I've sort of bobbed and weaved. At one stage I didn't wear a hat, and at one stage I say, I'm going to have the communication, I don't want to have the communication as well, too. It's tough. You can see I'm struggling with it. You can see I'm struggling with it. One minute, I think, yeah, I'm good with this role and the next minute, I think, yeah, I want to be there. I'm so envious of the guys playing. I'm really struggling with it. It's really difficult to be honest. I don't know if I'm ready for it yet.

Q. The incident on the 18th, the ruling with the free drop this morning?
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, that was an outrageous piece of fortune. Outrageous piece of fortune.

Q. There was no dispute about what should have happened?
PAUL McGINLEY: I didn't get involved. To be honest, I know I sound like a football manager, but I didn't see the ball. (Laughter).
Purposely I didn't get over there. The referee was there, Mats Lanner, who is a very capable referee. And my players were there, and my view very much this week on the golf course has been hands off. I'm not telling these guys how to play golf. They know how to play golf. I'm not getting involved in their little battles on the golf course. They are big enough and old enough to do it themselves.
Certainly I'll guide them, and if there's a problem I'll deal with it, but I've been very hands on. My job has been preparing them before and afterwards, and a little bit of words of encouragement here and there during the game. But I don't see myself as being an active person in terms of giving advice.
Certainly in terms of encouragement and to be seen but not in terms of giving advice. That situation, I didn't even look at the ball to be honest. I don't know where the ball was. I know somebody he had it was under a bush, somebody said it wasn't, I don't know, I still don't know where it was and I didn't get involved. But certainly it was an outrageous piece of good fortune.

Q. But did you get vibes that members of the team or their captain was unhappy?
PAUL McGINLEY: If I saw him being upset, I walked away. I didn't want to get involved in a dispute. Thomas is a good friend of mine, and the last thing I want to do is get involved in a dispute like that. The referee is capable and I know he's impartial, and I know it was going to be taken care of, and I know it wasn't for me to put my nose it.
STEVE TODD: Thank you.

End of FastScripts

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