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January 23, 2005

Tom Lehman


Q. We welcome Tom Lehman into the interview area. I know it was a long week, a long day, but nonetheless a pretty good week for you. Maybe talk about the week and some of the things that went on this week

TOM LEHMAN: Well, I think the South course here sure is a tough golf course. 32 holes a day around that place is a beast. It's a beast of a course. I'm disappointed. I can't help it. I really felt it was a great chance for me. I don't get many chances to play in the final group with Tiger Woods, and for 30 holes today I held my own and really liked my chances. I felt very confident, high expectations. Until the very end, I felt I had a chance. I mis hit an 8 iron on the 17th hole and that kind of took the wind out of my sails.

Q. Does it hurt more (Inaudible)?

TOM LEHMAN: Well, whether it be Tiger or Vijay or Mickelson or Els, the guys who are on top of their games, any time you get a chance to go head to head with those guys for a chance to win, it's nice to beat them. It doesn't happen that often. So it was a great opportunity for me today and I really I went out today with a firm resolve that I was going to stay aggressive no matter what, and I felt I did that.

Q. You backed off of that shot on 17, the second shot. Was that indecision or were you figuring out exactly what you wanted to do?

TOM LEHMAN: The people over on the side started laughing, then I got it over again and my caddie backed me off because he gave me the wrong yardage. Even still, I felt good over the shot. I had a good yardage and I liked it. I liked the way I felt over it, and I just hit it thin.

Q. What was the yardage?


Q. The bunker shot on 17, did you think you might have made it?

TOM LEHMAN: I was hoping to pop it into the bank and see if I could get lucky and trickle down there near the hole somewhere. The fact it hit the pin was very luckily. I actually thought I would make the putt, but I really putted erratically today from the beginning, a lot of pulls. I pulled a lot of putts today, which I don't normally do with that putter. I tend to push it sometimes, but I don't pull them very often.

Q. How did the fog affect you?

TOM LEHMAN: I don't think it affected me a whole lot. I felt like it was such an exciting tournament, going basically shot for shot with three guys for a better part of the day. You're adrenaline doesn't let you get tired. I wasn't tired. And the fog was a nuisance, but it wasn't impossible.

Q. What were you thinking on the 18th fairway when Tiger went for it and nearly hit it into the water?

TOM LEHMAN: I wasn't sure what he was doing there. I knew he had to really catch it all to get it to the green. I have to give him a lot of credit, because he definitely didn't play his best golf this week. I've played with him the last 36 holes and he mis hit a lot of shots. I think he just kind of proved what a great competitor is with his phenomenal short game. He made all the putts he had to and his chipping was great, but he won the tournament definitely not playing his best.

Q. Did you anticipate today stopping play because of the fog or that it would be difficult at all?

TOM LEHMAN: No, I think the little delay we had was necessary, but once that cleared out you could see just fine. There was only one hole that was goofy, No. 12, but you could still see the green, still see the pin. You shouldn't stop it for one shot.

Q. You said you wanted to be aggressive all day. You didn't really score well on the last two holes (Inaudible)?

TOM LEHMAN: It was a hard course. There are really hard holes out there. I made four or five birdies today in the second round, five birdies. So that's good playing, to make five birdies out there is good. Some of those holes were difficult, I didn't play them very well.

The 4th hole was a tough hole. 12 is a tough hole. 11 is a tough hole. There were some tough holes.

Q. You were strong this year, and you've made a strong showing this year, how do you feel about that?

TOM LEHMAN: I'm sick of strong showings, quite frankly. I'm disappointed. I'm very disappointed. Quite frankly, I'm very proud of the way I played. The back nine was basically match play. I drove it in every fairway, hit a lot of greens, some decent shots. I'm really ticked off that I didn't win.

Q. Are you playing as well as you were (Inaudible)?

TOM LEHMAN: I think in some ways, yes. I think in some ways my confidence level is returning. It's probably not quite as high as it was back then. I think that's a big deal. If I had that kind of confidence that I had in the mid '90s I would probably play a little better. My game is pretty solid.

Q. Are you playing well enough to win?

TOM LEHMAN: I think I am. I do, I think I am. We'll see.

Q. Is winning the only way to get that confidence back?

TOM LEHMAN: Quite frankly, if I would have just hit a good 8 iron on the 17th hole, and then the last hole, I just tried to drop a sand wedge right on top of the flag. If I had a putt for birdie I would feel better about it. That's the only thing I regret this week, a finish like that. It was such a good match, and then the air out of the sails.

Q. Tiger is obviously (Inaudible)?

TOM LEHMAN: He hit some bombs. When he's getting the club in the right spot, he's killing it. Obviously he's kind of getting ahead of the ball a bit and hitting it to the right now and then, but when he gets loaded behind it and doesn't drop the club and is flat ahead of it, he hits it well. Like I say, he whipped the field playing lousy. I give him a lot of credit.

Q. Take us through your round real quick with birdies and bogeys.

TOM LEHMAN: 1, I had about a 75 foot putt and three putted to start the roll.

The third hole, a 7 iron to about 15 feet and made birdie.

Bogeyed 4, drove in the right rough.

Birdied 6, knocked it down in two and 2 putted from 30 feet.

Birdied 8, a 6 iron to eight feet.

Birdied the 10th hole, pitching wedge to about 10 feet.

Bogeyed 11 and 12, knocked it in the green side bunkers and didn't get it up and down.

Birdied 13, and parred way up to 17 and 18.

End of FastScripts.

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