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June 17, 2001

Retief Goosen


RAND JERRIS: We're now joined by Retief Goosen. Retief, you had a 1-over par round of 71, with three birdies and four bogeys on the day. I think we'll go straight to the floor for some questions, please.

Q. Was there a point when you were looking at the scoreboard on 18, because you were standing over there with a perfect angle for it, and you saw Stewart Cink struggling that you thought, "I've got this thing". Did you get ahead of yourself?

RETIEF GOOSEN: No, I didn't. I knew I had to get down and try and make the putt or 2-putt. But like Mark was saying, that green is a little bit slow, and putting up the hill there I just hit it too hard. I hit it right through the break. Seeing what happened to Stewart's third putt breaking so much right, I saw my putt coming back just off center right, and it went right on me. So that was -- I was very surprised at that. I've had my breaks today. On the second hole I hit it right left and hit a tree and in the water, stayed out of the water, and got lucky there. Probably on the third hole, hit it in the trees, and the ball bounced back into the fairway. I've had my breaks out there, as well. Unfortunately, on the last hole I hit a perfect drive and a perfect 6-iron, and, well, I 3-putted. But tomorrow is another day. I'm looking forward to it and it's going to be a great day.

Q. Retief, Ernie Els said that he left a note in your locker this morning. Would you share with us what he said to you, please?

RETIEF GOOSEN: I didn't see a note from him in my locker this morning (laughter.) He probably put it in there after I'd been at my locker, so I didn't see it. I'm sure he was thinking of me, and wishing me luck. Tomorrow I'm going to get down with it tomorrow, and tomorrow it's more of a match play situation. It's me and Mark out there, nobody else to worry about, so it's going to be great.

Q. Did you, on the second putt on 18, did you misread that or miss-hit it?

RETIEF GOOSEN: No, I didn't misread it. Me and Greg saw it off center right. I felt like I made a good stroke. The putt for some reason went right on me and lipped out on the right side. So I was very surprised that the putt went that way. I expected, if anything, that it should go left.

Q. Tomorrow will you play the golf course or will you play the opponent?

RETIEF GOOSEN: I think there's going to be a bit of both. I think we're both going to try, to try to put the ball in the fairway to put pressure on the other guy. It's going to be more of a match play situation, I think.

Q. Retief, do you like the situation, you have an 18 hole playoff, gives you a little bit of time to regroup instead of going on maybe in a sudden death situation?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Well, I've been in a couple of playoffs, obviously 18 holes is -- I think 18 holes gives you more of a chance than just a sudden death playoff. You can get down, get relaxed and sort of play the course, but you're much more aware of what your opponent is doing. 18 holes tomorrow, if you can get a good round in, I've pretty much got a good chance of winning it.

Q. Retief, let's talk about nervousness for a second. Did your nervousness go up on each of the 3-putts, the 10-footer, then the next one, then the one to get into the playoff? Can you talk about what was going on in your body there?

RETIEF GOOSEN: Yeah, obviously, you're nervous. That's part of the game. I'm not going to say I wasn't nervous. But I got down there and I hit the first putt, like I said, when I hit it I knew I hit it a little too hard. The second putt I felt pretty calm on it. It just didn't go in. Probably the harder putt was the third putt, yeah. But I just knocked it in and I told myself just knock it in and tomorrow is another day.

Q. Retief, the rap on you is that you're bashful and that you really kind of shy away from the limelight. Is that fair? And secondly, how has being thrust into this situation affected you?

RETIEF GOOSEN: I've enjoyed it out there this week. The crowds have been great. When it was my turn to play it was dead quiet. And when I made a putt I got me a good clap. It was great. It was a great feeling. I enjoyed every moment of it out there and tomorrow I'll get a little bit more of that.

RAND JERRIS: Thank you for your time. Wish you luck tomorrow.

End of FastScripts....

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