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November 15, 2011

Steve Stricker


Q. Was there ever at any point that you didn't think you might make this? Any concern about making it worse for next year? Was that in your mindset with the decision?
STEVE STRICKER: I guess the only time I didn't think I may not come was the Chicago TOUR Championship time. You know, after I got through the TOUR Championship feeling pretty good after the cortisone shot, and I felt like I had that six-week period to kind of rest and do some rehabilitation on it and stuff like that, then I thought it would be all right.
So, no, it's really a non-issue. It really feels a lot better. It's a good test these next few weeks. I go back to States, I have one week off, and I play a couple more events. I'll see how it goes in this next three to four-week period.

Q. How's your knee?
STEVE STRICKER: Pretty good, actually. Yeah. I never got too far away from it at home. I played -- we had good weather all fall. It seemed like I played two or three times a week just playing and going out with friends or something. Then I worked pretty hard the last ten days at home, hitting a lot of balls, then went out to Phoenix for a three-, four-day period just to play before coming over here.

Q. Can we expect you to be paired with Tiger? Is that set in stone yet?
STEVE STRICKER: No, you know what, it's not set in stone. We'll start talking about it, I'm sure, today and tomorrow. I'm sure we'll go out at some point. I'm not sure which format or what yet. Yeah, there are a lot of possibilities, I think yet.

Q. What do you think about the course so far?
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah, it's a great course. Kind of reminds me of a British Open style course, but also reminds me of Metropolitan when we were back here in 2002.
So it has a great look to it. The course is in great shape. It's nice to be here. Can't say anything negative about the course. It's very nice. It's very fair.
I imagine when the wind, if the wind were to get up and blow, it's going to be very difficult too. It's tough to get the balls close to the pin. It's really firm. The greens are really firm, so it's tough to judge it on the greens. Overall, it's in great shape and it's a great layout.

Q. Obviously the Australians have the benefit. They've both played it a fair amount. How much of an advantage is it playing all over the world? You know, is it just another course that you've got to adjust to?
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah, we have to adjust to it. They probably do have a little bit of an advantage. This style of course is not really what the Americans are used to growing up on or playing. That's what we do on a weekly basis is adjust. It's no different this week than any other week, and we just have to adjust to the conditions.
Maybe that means practice a little bit more on certain parts of your game, whether it's chipping or putting. The greens are extremely fast. You have to really pay attention on the greens. So you just have to adjust, and they are too. They're going to have to too. I'm sure they'll have a little advantage in having played here previous years.

Q. You've played in a number of these down the road. Does it ever get old in any way?
STEVE STRICKER: Not at all. It's a lot of fun to be here. To be a part of a team and to all come together as one to try to win the Presidents Cup, it's a pretty cool feeling. We're trying to beat up on one another on a weekly basis. So to come here -- then once you do come here, you remember the past experiences, too, when you were here as a team before, not specifically here in Melbourne in the Presidents Cup. Yeah, it's a lot of fun. It doesn't get old.

Q. Phil has played 18.
STEVE STRICKER: 18 Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup?

Q. First of all, can you imagine that. Second of all, what does he bring to the team room these days?
STEVE STRICKER: Phil? Yeah, he brings a lot to the team room. I've gotten to know him over the years through these events. He's a great team room guy. He's a great competitor. He lightens it up. He's got always some off-the-cuff remark. You know Phil.
But he said a funny thing on the bus this morning to get everybody laughing. So stuff like that. You know, it's --

Q. And that was?
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah, I know. But he's just a good guy to be around. The last few events that I have been on, these team events, he's actually taken it seems like a new guy under his wing and kind of led him along. He'll play with anybody, so he's a real team player.

Q. Do you expect him to be a real team player?
STEVE STRICKER: I would think so, for sure.

Q. In terms of camaraderie, how much of an advantage is it to have 12 guys from one country as opposed to 12 guys from four countries, different languages, that type of thing?
STEVE STRICKER: Yeah, that's a good point. Never thought about it. But I'm sure it's got to mean something on our side because we see each other on a weekly basis. We're friends with these guys. We play practice rounds with one another.
I suppose sometimes International Team guys have a tough time doing that. You know, they may be all over the world. So, yeah, I guess you could say we have a slight advantage in that department being maybe closer to one another just because we see more of each other.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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