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June 24, 2011

Henrik Stenson


GORDON SIMPSON: Henrik, 10-under par, leading the championship at halfway, clearly the last two holes weren't exactly what you wanted, but the position is.
HENRIK STENSON: Yeah, absolutely. It's still -- obviously the guys in the afternoon are going to play and somebody will be leading when the day is over, but I would expect to be in a good position going into the weekend no matter what.
Yeah, it's never fun to drop two shots, but if you hit it left on a left on a let pin on 8, it's always going to be a tricky up-and-down.
And didn't catch it on 9, I think the wind started to turn a little bit, as well, because I played the tee shot down and all of a sudden it was slightly into and I pulled it and didn't quite catch it.
So, yeah, that wasn't the best of finishes. Thought I hit had a good par putt from ten feet or something. Looked in all the way and it jumped out at the end. Thought I was going to get away with a par.
Some good stuff again. I didn't play my best early on in the round and then I got it back on track, hit some good shots and gave myself chances, not too much dropping mid round and then I pitched in for eagle on 6 and hit a great drive and a pitching wedge to a foot on 7. So I took that hole on, and made that one play pretty easy today, and yeah, it was a good finish. Should have been slightly better.
GORDON SIMPSON: I suppose 6 and 7 balance out 8 and 9 a little bit.
HENRIK STENSON: Yeah, sometimes you gain some, you lose some. So still a long to go, and, yeah, looking forward to the weekend.

Q. Do you have confidence now, and are you ready to win a tournament?
HENRIK STENSON: Yeah, I hope so. Still not as high as I would have liked it to be, but I think I'm playing good enough to win this tournament and to win golf tournaments, and if that does turn out to be the case on Sunday afternoon, we'll see.

Q. How did you work out? What did you do to get back in that --
HENRIK STENSON: Like I said yesterday, when you are in a slump, you need to address both the mental side and the technical side, or at least I had to. I can't speak for others. For me it's very rarely just the one thing that goes wrong. And to get out of it, you need to work on both things, and I think I've been a bit confused with myself in terms of the swing, as well.
And then I've tried really to simplified stuff, and really be sure and clear on what I'm going to do with my swing, and once that's done, you can work more on the mental routine and picking your target and trying to hit some shots where you want them to go.
Then you need to work on your patience and acceptance and all of these things, so there's a lot of angles to attack these kind of problems.

Q. Who do you work with?
HENRIK STENSON: I have worked with Pete Cowen since 2001.

Q. You could be co-leader today or not, but will you pay attention to the scoring later today or will you worry about it when you show up tomorrow?
HENRIK STENSON: I don't think I should worry about it at all. But no, I mean, I'm not going to sit around here watching what happens. I'll see late tonight what the story is, and I'm just going to go out there and try and stay patient and give myself chances and play good on the weekend, and then we'll see where it takes us.
I want to try to get some good finishes and winning is obviously the ultimate one.

Q. I understand that Fanny helps Martin out with the mental side of golf. Does she work similarly with you?
HENRIK STENSON: Not really, but obviously she's a support to me, and I kind of talk to her at times about different things. So she's helping out. But I don't have the same working relationship with her as Martin got, and I think it's kind of hard to have that maybe and be a caddie at the same time. A lot of times, it would be two hats, and which one are you wearing now, and so on.
We try to keep it as being mainly caddie, but sometimes, you know, the caddie's role is also to support and find how to play when things aren't going great. So it's obviously a thin line to balance at times.
GORDON SIMPSON: Having won a World Golf Championships event, having won THE PLAYERS Championship, did you feel at this time you might be sitting here with a Major title under your belt?
HENRIK STENSON: Yeah, I mean, it's definitely -- if I look at my record, winning a Major Championship would be like the last thing to make it more or less complete. Obviously playing in more Ryder Cups and winning more golf tournaments. But I've kind of won on both sides of the pond, and won some great tournaments.
So that is the one missing, but let's try and have a good weekend here first, and then we have the British Open coming up in a couple of weeks. If I can keep on building on this progress, hopefully I can give myself some chances to win Majors.
GORDON SIMPSON: Is that a tournament you enjoy, the British?
HENRIK STENSON: Absolutely. I've played well there a couple of times now. I think the Majors in general, once you sort of realise that you don't have to play your absolute best; you need to hang in there, you need to stay focused and patient all week, then you can start getting a good result. And obviously if you're playing up to your standards, you're going to get a chance to win.

Q. This is not the biggest tournament, even though you are treated by kings here by BMW as you said yesterday, what would a victory mean here? Would it be something special to you, more special than a victory like two years ago?
HENRIK STENSON: Well, it would definitely be great to win again. I haven't won since THE PLAYERS Championship in 2009, so it's been about two years since I've won a tournament.
Obviously the longer period of time in between victories, the more you kind of enjoy it I think. Yeah, it would mean a lot for me to win in terms of confidence and so on, but no point in speculating. I might be tied fourth with three other guys -- with a bunch of guys tonight and still two rounds to go. I mean, I can play great and finish fifth from here on or 10th or whatever, so no point speculating too much.

Q. One more question, I hope you won't be angry with me, but I have to ask it as a journalist, but the financial thing, how has the story ended for you?
HENRIK STENSON: It has not ended for you. If you are thinking about the Stamford -- no, that's still ongoing. It's not something that I really pay any attention to. I will be informed at some point in what the outcome will be and I expect that to be a number of years down the road. It's still -- I think it's about two years ongoing now. So we don't know what the outcome is going to be, so it's not something I pay any attention to at this point.

Q. You played last week in the U.S. Open and now you're here. How is your schedule now? Are you going to Paris and Scotland? Are you playing five weeks in a row?
HENRIK STENSON: No. I'm having -- the next two weeks I'm not playing. I've got a Challenge Tour event in Sweden that I support, The Princess by Schüco, and I'm going to spend some time there. I'm playing Martin the Monday after, an exhibition game, so we expect a lot of people to come out and see us play.
And then I have a few days off and then I go early for the British Open. I've done that the last couple of years and that seems to pay off, play the course and get some links practise over the weekend. I'm playing in Sweden the week after, and then I'm not in for Akron and the PGA. That's what I'm trying to get, as well. I'm trying to get some points up to get into the PGA Championship in particular, because that's the one that's within reach from the position I'm in.

Q. You obviously sound very keen to win again, but do you think you may be a bit too keen, after dropping a shot on the 8th, your approach could have been a bit more cautious with that one?
HENRIK STENSON: No, I'm still happy. The one I'm not happy with was the shot on 8. It was a poor 7-iron I hit there, and I know going left is not the option on that pin, and still, I managed to do that. So that wasn't great. But I try to make up for it on 9 and just didn't hit a good enough shot. And like I said, the wind seemed to turn a little bit, and it played longer, as well. I thought if I would have hit it on the shorter angle, even with a missed drive, I really should have cleared it with a 5-wood from that yardage. So it was kind of a bit of wind change, not getting it perfect and then hitting it too far left, so it was kind of a few little things to get it that made it out the wrong way.
But no, it would have been all right getting it back. Bogey, bogey finish isn't great. But I finished poorly at Sawgrass on Saturday and still went out and won that one, so I'm not too disappointed.
GORDON SIMPSON: Henrik, thank you very much and good luck over the weekend.

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