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October 29, 2004

Rod Pampling


TODD BUDNICK: We thank Rod Pampling after a 6-under 65 here in round 2 at the Chrysler Championship. Bogey-free we might add. You got off to a great start; after parring the first two holes, ran off three birdies. That kind of got your day going.

ROD PAMPLING: Yeah, I didn't hit a great shot into 10 but made a nice two-putt there, and it was disappointing not to birdie 11, but we hit some nice shots coming into the next three holes. We got the round off to a good start. It gave me an opportunity to not attack some of the pins out there and just play smart, two-putt, and then towards the end I got on a roll where the pins were a little bit more accessible, and 18 was a nice one to make. That was a real bendy putt. That was a nice way to finish.

TODD BUDNICK: Most guys will tell you that it's a difficult course, yet this year it looks like a lot more guys are going low out there. Is there anything condition-wise? The rough is higher and it shouldn't be yielding the scores that it's yielding.

ROD PAMPLING: I just think we have very little wind, and that's the key. Any golf course where there's not a lot of wind, I think there's so much depth out here, you're going to get a bunch of guys go low, and thankfully I was one of them today.

The rough is still nasty out there. You can get into some spots where you don't have a shot; you've got to chip it out. Thankfully we've been hitting it pretty straight off the tee and not getting in any of those lies. I think the fact that there's no wind is definitely the key.

TODD BUDNICK: We had you in here earlier in week as No. 30 on the Money List, and you have to be happy with your start to give yourself a shot at keeping that spot in your first Tour Championship.

ROD PAMPLING: Yeah, definitely. We want to make sure we gives ourselves a chance for the weekend. Yes, we've done that. Obviously anyone can just go out there and win this golf tournament and pass me. All I can do is play my own game, and hopefully at the end of the week, if someone passes me, I might make enough money to pass someone else, so I'll stay 30. At this stage we'll just keep doing the same things, just try and make some nice putts early on and not be aggressive with some of these pins. They're pretty tricky if you miss them in the wrong spots. We just try to hit them in the right spots and make the putt.

TODD BUDNICK: And the back?

ROD PAMPLING: It's not too bad. Obviously I took some anti-inflammatories and that sort of settled it down. There's a little niggling there, but thankfully we're in hot weather so it's fine. I think about it every now and again out there, but it's nearly gone. It doesn't affect my swing at all, so that's good.

Q. Do you look and see what the guys around you on the Money List are doing, or is that not productive?

ROD PAMPLING: No. Well, you see the names that are around. You know who's around you, so you see what they're doing, but not at this stage. It's early in the week and anything can happen out there, but at the end of the day there's still nothing you can do about it. I've just got to try and play my game as best I can and hopefully at the end of the week it'll either improve my position or keep it.

Q. When the season is over, do you go back to Australia for any amount of time?

ROD PAMPLING: Yeah, we'll be going back to play the Australian Open and the Australian PGA and then straight back over here.

Q. Is that December?

ROD PAMPLING: The Open is late November, and then the next event is early December, so we'll be back over here by December 10.

Q. Do you still have family that you would visit and all that?

ROD PAMPLING: Oh, yeah, both our parents and all our family is in Australia.

Q. Your wife, also?

ROD PAMPLING: Yes. So this is a very quick trip, this one. Obviously my wife can't travel any later than that with a baby on the way, so that's why we leave straight away after the second event.

Yeah, it's going to be hectic. It always is. It's very busy when you go back to Australia, but it's actually -- the golf course is where you relax just about, it's so hectic down there.

Yeah, it'll just be a quick trip this time. Generally we stay over through December and fly over before the first event of the year.

Q. Anything you miss about living there?

ROD PAMPLING: Of course you do. You know, that's where you grew up. It's just a coastal -- just the surf and the beach and a few different foods, the meat pie and all those sorts of things you always miss out on, but you get accustomed to a cheeseburger and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. We can still bring a few things over with us, but I think we're both -- both myself and my wife feel comfortable over here. It's more home now, but you still miss the things definitely that you grew up with in Australia.

Q. Do Australians, when they go into an Outback in the U.S. do they laugh?


Q. Do they think it's cheesy, or is there anything about it that --

ROD PAMPLING: Oh, no, it's great. They have those restaurants, and I think it's great that it's such a successful restaurant, which means obviously the relations between America and Australia are pretty strong. The thing that you laugh at is the Bloomin' Onion because I've never heard of one before (laughter). The shrimp, that would be like having Dallas shrimp. It's not even near the coast. But they rhyme, so it's goofy, and we have a laugh at that.

TODD BUDNICK: Just go through your card, Rod. Birdies 12 through 14?

ROD PAMPLING: Yeah, 12 was a 2-iron, 8-iron to about three feet.

Par 3 was a 5-iron to a foot.

Then we went driver, 6-iron, wedge to maybe 20 feet, made that one.

5, we hit driver, 2-iron, lob wedge to about ten feet, made that.

7, we hit driver, gap wedge to about 15 feet.

Then on the last, it was driver, 6-iron to about 25 feet with ten feet of break, so 35 feet total (laughter).

Q. Did you have any good saves out of that rough around a green or anything where you just --

ROD PAMPLING: Yeah, definitely. I made a good up-and-down on 6. It's a tough fairway to hit, so you've really got to shape that perfectly up there. It finished in the left rough, and I hit it over the back of the middle of the green, and I made maybe a 15-footer there for par. Other than that, it was pretty solid.

I had an up-and-down out of a bunker on the back nine on 16. Other than that, it was a pretty solid day.

TODD BUDNICK: Thank you.

End of FastScripts.

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