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May 27, 2011

Ian Poulter


Q. That's what you call an eventful finish with tree roots, water hazards, birdie, double-bogey; just sum up your fortunes today for us.
IAN POULTER: I hit a couple of shots which probably weren't really on my target line. And therefore, I got punished for it.

Q. Simple as that, yeah?
IAN POULTER: Yeah. I mean, the shots that I missed greens with, that I didn't make par, were slightly off-line, and they happened to be on the tough par 4s, where you're looking for a five-yard window and if you get it outside that window, you're going to be leaving yourself a difficult up-and-down, and obviously I didn't get up-and-down on those holes.
You know, I make a great 4 on 17, and I decided to continue my love affair with this golf course on the last.

Q. I know you're being ironic there, because I know you're not exactly the greatest fan of this.
IAN POULTER: No, I'm not.

Q. But how do you try and counteract those instincts that are in you about a close that you're playing that you want to win on obviously?
IAN POULTER: Trust me, I am trying. And I am trying very hard, because I have not had a great record on this golf course. And you know, today -- yesterday was great. You know what, I executed shots pretty well. I miss-hit a few today. And obviously I'm walking away disappointed. So I'll have to rethink tomorrow and see what happens.

Q. Continue the love affair, that's exactly that you have to do.
IAN POULTER: I guess so. I mean, yeah.

Q. You just don't like 18?
IAN POULTER: I don't like this golf course, period, end of story. It is absolutely -- you know, if you hit a couple of poor shots on this golf course, you will get punished for it. And I guess I hit a couple of poor shots on this golf course today and I didn't get away with it.
So it's going to be tough. You don't need to do a lot wrong on this newly-designed Wentworth golf course to struggle.

Q. Do you think that before you tee off or is it the first shot that goes off that you start, these negative thoughts come in?
IAN POULTER: I don't have negative thoughts. I never have anything thoughts.
You know, it's a difficult golf course. There's a number of difficult holes on this golf course. Especially with this wind. For instance, 3. Very difficult. You're going in with a long iron into a green that's raised, the greens are firm, and it's going to be tough to get it close.
You know, you've got holes like 9. The pin doesn't lend itself -- unfortunately the green doesn't lend itself unfortunately to a medium to long iron coming into that green, because it's raised at the front and it's hard to carry the front and stop it short of the pin.
12, the new par 4. Again, it's into the wind. You know what, you're going into that green with a medium to long iron, it's difficult to get it close. So those holes, particularly, you know, wore me down today. I didn't hit the perfect golf shot trying to land it on a dinner table and when you don't do that, then obviously it's going to be difficult. But it's a tough golf course the way it's been re-designed.

Q. Monty comes here and he loves it; you come here as World Match Play Champion --
IAN POULTER: I love it. I was here from a kid watching all the great shots but unfortunately we have lost that because we are not going to know and we are not going to remember those wonderful shots that we have seen everybody hit around this great golf course.
Faldo's shot out of the trees right on 15, massive cut around on to the green, and I can go on and on and on and on at the shots, and they weren't -- it's now changed. It's different. So therefore, those shots you can't remember. We are going to have to fill up the archive with a lot of new shots.

Q. Too severe?
IAN POULTER: It's been re-designed.

Q. Is it too tough?
IAN POULTER: I think a number of holes are very difficult. I've named a few. 15, you're going to bring a ditch in all the way down the right-hand side on a hole, which back in the day, was played as a par 5. It's a par 4. It's a long one at that now. The front of the green has always been a tough one. The bunker has always been above the level of the green and therefore, you land it, it's going to kick it left and now there's a bowl to take it further left. That's a tough hole. That's probably going to play the toughest hole of the week.
And you can't even sniff 17. You know, we are back 60 yards. We can't hit that shot that we all saw that was hugging the left trees to get it around the corner to have a go at making eagle. It's tough, the way it's been re-designed.

Q. Is it a question of degree of difficulty or fairness?
IAN POULTER: The degree of fairness, the course is playing firm at the minute, so therefore, you can get some firm bounces, which can take it away from the pin.
So is that fair the way it's been re-designed? And is it -- what else did you say?

Q. Is it degree of difficulty or fairness? Is it a question of difficulty or fairness? Two different things, isn't it.
IAN POULTER: It is, but the margins right now are so small. We are trying to land it on a dining room table from 230 yards out, and it's -- you miss your target, yeah, I think it's a little unfair.

Q. Is it fun?
IAN POULTER: Well, you're watching, you tell me. Is it fun? If was fun watching Luke play yesterday, and he's walking off the golf course saying it's one of the best round of golf he's ever played, and he shot 7-under. Is it fun? It's not fun.

Q. You stayed away from here even before the changes -- do you think it's even worse now?
IAN POULTER: It's a tough golf course, isn't it. It's a tough golf course, period. You know, we are not going to see the winning scores that we saw on the old golf course because the greens are firm soft, you could get up at 17 and make eagle and you could get up on 18 and make eagle.

Q. Is isn't that you have a problem with tough golf courses, is it?
IAN POULTER: I don't have a problem with tough golf courses, no, and level par is hanging in there. But I've walked off the golf course and I'm absolutely headless, absolutely fuming. I've just made double-bogey. I've hit what I thought was a perfect shot, third shot, maybe caught out a tiny bit by the wind and pitches by the green and finishes in the hazard. Marvellous.

Q. That's the re-design. Does it need another dig-up over the winter?
IAN POULTER: I'm not commenting over that one.

Q. Are you tempted not to come back?
IAN POULTER: Who knows. I don't know what I'm going to do in a year's time. I really, honestly, I've got no idea. I just -- I've loved this golf course from a kid, but I don't seem to get the best out of this golf course. And now for me, it's now turning into a very, very difficult golf course. And I've got to say, it's not fun golf. You can't finish eagle, eagle. That was fun. You could be five shots back and had a chance to finish eagle, eagle on this golf course, and you can't finish eagle, eagle anymore.
So some of the fun of the last few holes, I think, have been taken away. You know what, that's the re-design, that's what they want, and so they got what they want.

Q. How much satisfaction would it give to you have a high finish, bearing in mind --
IAN POULTER: I want to win the golf course, on level par, if I shoot two good rounds of golf, I have a chance to win the golf tournament. I'm here to win. I'm just giving you my view on this golf course. I actually don't care what it's like to be honest. There's 18 pins and 18 holes and I try to get it in the least amount of shots and try to pick a trophy up and that's it.
The fact is, we are playing for an awful lot of money, on what is a good golf course, and know what, it's the flagship tournament of The European Tour. It's a big tournament, got huge World Ranking points and someone has to win so it really doesn't matter where we play. It's a case of trying to win what is a big tournament with massive World Ranking points.

Q. You wouldn't be here presumably if it wasn't the flagship tournament?
IAN POULTER: I don't know.

Q. Not alone in your views, either?
IAN POULTER: I'll speak freely, is what I will do. Many others may not.

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