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April 22, 2004

Rod Pampling


CHRIS REIMER: Rod Pampling, a bogey-free 66 today. You birdied the first three holes. How important is it with an early tee time on Thursday to get off to a good start?

ROD PAMPLING: Definitely had to get off to a good start. Obviously we'd been playing a lot of wind. To get out early without a lot of wind it was nice to capitalize and start well and just hang on -- well, not hang on but consolidate from there and just build.

Q. How would you kind of assess what your year had been coming to this point, what your mind set has been?

ROD PAMPLING: It's been a solid year. I've been playing nice golf, I just haven't finished a tournament off. I've had a lot of top 15s, three or four top 15s, so it's been solid. As I said, I just haven't had a really good week yet.

Q. What has been your focus kind of trying to get yourself there?

ROD PAMPLING: Kind of just trying to focus, not getting ahead of myself. What do I say, playing shot for shot and not getting ahead of myself. I think that's where sometimes it lacks a little bit. And yeah, I'm definitely working hard on that to try and get over the line first.

Q. You've obviously established yourself on Tour. Do you start putting pressure on yourself to win? Is that kind of what you're talking about?

ROD PAMPLING: Definitely. Once you get settled out here and established, you're certainly looking to win, and that's definitely one of my goals, is to win. If we keep heading in the same direction where we are, it's going to come, it's just letting it happen.

Q. Have you led a tournament this year yet?

ROD PAMPLING: This year? I, honest to God -- I've been close. I think last week I was 2nd after the first round. We've had a few that were close to it, yes.

CHRIS REIMER: He was a co-leader, leader of the first round of the 2003 PGA and last year at Doral last year, a couple good first rounds. Other Australian players have done well here. Appleby has won here. Allenby has won here. Is there something from that neck of the woods that --

ROD PAMPLING: I hope so. I hope they're rubbing off. I don't know, I think it's just -- I think they were at Woodlands when they won, but it's a slightly different golf course. It's more of a power game here. The Woodlands you need to shape it a bit more, but this year the course is -- the rough is really growing up, so it's more -- I think it brings a lot more players back in because the fairways are firm, it's just accuracy more here. I like to think I'm a fairly accurate player, so it's probably a good way to go.

Q. You talked about not wanting to get ahead of yourself. You started out birdie, birdie, birdie. How much does that kind of test you along that way and not get the mind racing about how low can I go?

ROD PAMPLING: Well, the first three holes of the tournament, so there's a lot more holes to come along. For me I got off to a good start. I wasn't out there trying to continually birdie every hole, just still play smart and play the way that we worked out how to play each hole, and if a birdie comes along, great, you take it.

It was a lot easier the first four or five holes with not that much wind out there, so it was -- yeah, it was a nice day.

CHRIS REIMER: Let's go through your club selection on your birdie and bogey holes here. You started out birdieing 10.

ROD PAMPLING: 10 we hit driver, gap wedge to about 12 feet.

11, we hit driver into the right rough and hit a bump 7 to about a foot.

12, hit driver into the left rough, 9-iron, punched out and then a 7-iron to about 30 feet, I think, made that.

15, we hit into the right rough, hit 5-iron just short and knocked to up to 6 foot, made it.

2, 3-wood, sand wedge to about 3 foot.

And then 9 was driver, 3-wood and chipped to a foot.

CHRIS REIMER: Thank you very much. Good luck tomorrow.

End of FastScripts.

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