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November 16, 2011

David Toms


Q. The decision to put Tiger and Adam together in the first day, do you think that's a good move considering what's going on?
DAVID TOMS: I don't see why not. I mean, you kind of get it out of the way and let people write about whatever they want to write about and maybe it all goes away and we can get back to golf. I'm sure those guys, they just want to play golf. I'm sure that the caddies are ready and everything, they just want to play golf. You know, why not just get it out of the way and move on.

Q. Do you think Tiger's happy he shares the same --
DAVID TOMS: He's very focused. Seems to be having fun in the team room but at the golf course he seems very focused, seems to be playing well. I haven't played with him this week so far but everything I've heard from the other teammates that he's really striking the ball well. Obviously he's coming off a good week last week, so he will definitely be an asset to the team.

Q. When he was the captain's pick, being a captain's pick, is there pressure in there to show that it was the right pick?
DAVID TOMS: Well, I think so, but at the same time, when the guy is healthy and playing well, he's the best player in the world, so I don't think anybody else on the team had any negative thoughts whatsoever towards that pick. I mean, most people enjoy being around him. He certainly has a lot of experience that he can bring to some of the younger guys, and like I said, I said to the team that he's playing well and it looks like he is.

Q. You've been on a lot of teams with him, Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup, people see him on TV and they don't really know him, and you know him. Is he a good guy to have in the rooms and is he --
DAVID TOMS: Absolutely. He's just like one of the other guys. You know, he was there until the end last night. We had pizza after we got home last night after the dinner and he was up having dinner with everybody showing videos of his kids swinging a golf club and just great to have around, just like everybody else. Certainly the public putts him up on a pedestal and maybe holds him to a different standard than everybody else but at the same time we view him just like one of our teammates.

Q. Why do you think Stricker is such a good teammate with Tiger and they pair so well?
DAVID TOMS: I think they get along well. Obviously Steve has a steady game, maybe let's Tiger be a little more aggressive at times than he might otherwise be, and has a calming affect and knows he's going to be there for him and be consistent.
Steve is another one of those guys that gets up for these events and plays great and is just a good teammate. I mean, why would you not want to play with him.

Q. Do you think Royal Melbourne will suit your game? It's not an overly long course; you are pretty accurate with the irons and the like, what are your thoughts?
DAVID TOMS: First of all, like you said, the golf course averages everybody out. Seems like most people hit it in the same spots, but might hit different clubs to get it there but it averages the whole field out. Obviously it will come down to who makes the putts in the end, who keeps the ball in play. A lot of trouble out there on the golf course if you are hitting it sideways. So you'll see a lot of things happen out there I'm sure. You'll see probably a lot of birdies but at the same time you'll see some others and should be pretty fun for the fans.

Q. So you are pretty happy to be playing with Hunter rather than Bubba or Dustin?
DAVID TOMS: I don't know. I think best-ball, I think you'll probably see some guys play the golf course differently than they will for the foursomes. We'll see. We'll see, kind of have to get out there and get a feel for it and how it goes, what the weather is like and what you need to do. All you have to do is beat the other team. You don't have to beat the field, so you just have to go out there and do the best you can to get 1-up on your opponent.

Q. Are there any additional nerves?
DAVID TOMS: I think it's a different format and it's an uneasy format for everyone, maybe even more so for guys that have not played it before. Might feel a bit more pressure knowing that you have to hit the shot but that's what this type of competition does to you anyway. It's whatever team probably deals with that the best.

Q. When did Fred talk about the couplings and the pairings, last night or did you find out today?
DAVID TOMS: Well, we have talked about it a little bit since we arrived, what guys might be comfortable and what guys's thoughts were as far as how the holes are set up and odds and evens and things like that. We have made a few changes along the way.
We have some guys that might be more comfortable at best-ball than foursomes as far as the pairings go and who plays with who. There's been a lot of input from a lot of guys but at the same time the captains and his assistants need to make that final decision and that's what they did going into tomorrow's matches.

Q. Was it wise to play in Australia the week before?
DAVID TOMS: I think so. I've been gone away from the home, from the United States, for three weeks now and it certainly helped me to get adjusted to the time and the way my body feels. It's just about playing golf now. You don't really have to focus on how you need to prepare mentally or physically or what you need to eat, how much sleep you need to get. I'm basically on your time now so it's just all about going out and playing golf.

Q. What does it mean to you to be back in team competition?
DAVID TOMS: At this stage of my career, I'll be 45 soon, I'm obviously one of the older guys on the team. To make the team with all of the great players that are playing in the United States now, to be a part of a 12-man roster, to be part of this competition is an honor for me. It means I continue to work hard and stay confident and as long as I can do that, maybe I'll make some more teams, who knows. But at this point, I just want to enjoy my time, go out and play great and hopefully be part of a winning team.

Q. How hard was it to watch some of the competitions that you haven't been on?
DAVID TOMS: Well, people ask me about that when I'm at home. My response is, I know what I'm missing. I've been a part of those team competitions and I know how enjoyable they are. Not only the competition part, but the behind the scenes part. It's something I look forward to and to be back a part of it is very special.

Q. Retief was in here and he has not played here very much and he said it's borderline -- he's putted a few almost off the green. At this stage in the week, they still seem pretty quick and we have a bit of rain and they are still fast.
DAVID TOMS: You would like to be able to control where you hit into the greens as far as where you are on the green with your second shots but as firm as they are right now, you just are at the mercy of the bounce sometimes. So you'll find yourself with some pretty difficult putting situations and you just have to make the best of it.
Obviously there are some areas where it's going to be very difficult to get up-and-down, but with the wind blowing and firmness around the greens, a lot of times you just have to suck it up and go play the ball. You would like to control it. Sometimes when you hit the short iron, you can play underneath the hole or right or left of the hole, wherever you would have the best spot but a lot of times you have to play the middle of the green and take whatever bounce you get.
Some putts you can be aggressive and others you just 2-putt and get out.

Q. Does it remind you of Augusta in that way?
DAVID TOMS: It does, and the fact that even when you're in good position and feel like whenever you hit a good shot, you might get into a tough spot on the greens and once you do, that you just have to feel like, oh, 2-putts, par is a good score, two putts are good here, let's just do that and get out of here.

Q. A lot of times, courses you play throughout the year, you can fire straight at the pin. Is it hard to adjust? Does it change your game?
DAVID TOMS: It is, you might have to adjust your normal game plan but when you get into best-ball competition, that could adjust as well. You might have somebody that says, okay, well, I'm going to get to the middle of the green and see if my partner can be more aggressive. Your miss might not be very good, but if you hit the shot you might be able to pull it off. I think you'll see more of that obviously in best-ball competition.

Q. How do you and Hunter match up?
DAVID TOMS: Good. We have not quite decided who is going to hit off the even and odd holes. We'll discuss that a little bit more. We have some sort of a game plan but we look forward to playing together.
I think our games suit each other nicely. We both have some experience, so if we play well, obviously we'll be a good team but you still have to go out there and play. We'll figure out tonight exactly how we want to attack the golf course, what our game plan is going to be and hopefully be ready come lunchtime tomorrow.

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