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May 25, 2012

John Cook


KELLY ELBIN:テつ John Cook in with a 5‑under par 66 today in the second round of the 73rd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid.テつ John is tied for the lead with Roger Chapman midway through the championship at 7‑under par.テつ John, strong finish, birdies on 5, 6 and 7, playing your second nine in 32.テつ Strong finish.テつ Feel good for the weekend I imagine.
JOHN COOK:テつ Yeah, I played good today, right from number 10 on.テつ Except for I didn't hit ‑‑ I birdied 10 right out of the block, made about a 6‑footer, after hitting just a little sand wedge in there.
But 11 I had it on the green, but in a bad spot.テつ I actually hit a great putt down there about a foot and a half and missed it.
And then No. 12 I had it right on a ridge that could go either way and I missed it, missed my spot by about an inch and it went six feet to the right.テつ And I end up making that putt.テつ So that was a nice kind of settle in.
The rest of the day I really played well.テつ I hit quality shots every single hole.テつ Never really struggled.
16, I thought I hit a pretty good drive, but didn't quite carry it and ended up hittable, but in the hazard, so I just chipped out and made a bogey.
But then I came back with birdie there and I had chances from 18 on in, really, almost every single hole.テつ So pretty pleased.テつ I struck the ball solidly all day and only had it in some funny spots a couple times.テつ So that's a big bonus.
KELLY ELBIN:テつ And you birdied three of the four par‑5s out there today.テつ Some of them perhaps more reachable than yesterday.
JOHN COOK:テつ Yeah, 15 I birdied, I hit a good drive, but I had a really funny lie.テつ I had a really side hill, downhill over the water, downwind, I was in between clubs.テつ And I go, gosh, I mean, I only had 200 yards to the front of the green and I went, I mean I hate to lay it up, but I, there was nowhere I could go.テつ There was nothing good was going to happen if I tried to hit a hybrid or a 3‑iron.
So I laid it up to the left with a 9‑iron and hit a sand wedge in there four feet and made it.テつ So I would have made far more 6s than 4s if I would have gone for it and I know I would have made more 4s than 5s hitting it out there to the left.
So my caddie Tommy, we talked about it, we hated to do what we did, but we had to.テつ There was no other way.テつ We didn't have another play.
But number 5, I laid it up perfect, I hit a nice drive, kind of into the wind, it was getting cold and windy, it was pretty tough at that point.テつ I hit a nice sand wedge in there about four feet and made that.
Then I came back with a real good birdie at 6.テつ Hit a nice drive and a 6‑iron and hit just left of the green, but on the good bank, not on the bad bank, on the good bank.テつ And it popped to the right down there a foot.
And then 7 they had the tees up and I had actually hit a tee ball from that front tee on Wednesday.テつ Just in case they did move the tees up.テつ So I knew where I could go.テつ And I hit it to the right over that tree and just had a little wedge into the green and hit it five feet and made that.
Then had chances at 8 and 9.
10‑footer at 8 I misread.
And about a 6‑footer at 9.テつ And I hit a pretty good a putt and I took one step and it broke out of the hole.テつ So, but again I'm very pleased with how I played today.テつ I drove the ball nicely, I've kept my patience for two days, which is a record, so that's good.
KELLY ELBIN:テつ Thank you, John.テつ Open it up for questions.

Q.テつ John, were the pins more accessible today or was it just the wind not being as severe as it was yesterday where guys were able to get to the spots they wanted?
JOHN COOK:テつ I think that, I don't know if the pins were more accessible.テつ But I think that with the wind blowing from that direction you could get it in sections.テつ There was very awkward pins, a couple of them, but some of them you could get it in the right section.
And the greens were very receptive.テつ I was actually very surprised that the greens were, they're firm, it's not like a ball's hitting and just plugging, but they're firm, but the ball's not like bouncing out of control.
So you could, if you had a good number and you hit a nice shot, you were pretty well rewarded.
The wind blew not nearly as hard as yesterday, obviously, but it blew a different direction.テつ So we were playing another golf course again today.
But if you hit it in the right levels, the greens are very good and you can make some putts.テつ They're at a good speed that you can be semi aggressive.テつ But if you drive the ball good, and you put it in good spots, you can negotiate your way around here.テつ But if you miss your spot by a couple of feet, you can have a very interesting 2‑putt.テつ And I actually negotiated those fairly well.

Q.テつ Hale matched your 66 and his age today.テつ What do you think of that?
JOHN COOK:テつ He's an inspiration.テつ He just, you know, I have such respect for Hale and Gill and Tom, I played with Tom Wargo a couple times the last couple years and he can still play a little bit.テつ Watson in his 60s.テつ So Hale just keeps getting it done.テつ That's just, you wouldn't expect anything else from a competitor like Hale.
He played behind me and I knew he got off to a good start and it looked like he was making birdies every hole.テつ And I go, oh, my God, look at this, we're battling around there just trying to make pars and here's this 66 year old just whooping our butts.
And I think it's great.テつ I think it's just great.テつ He played well in this last year.テつ And he actually played well a few times last year.テつ I think that he was in the Top‑30.テつ I think he made.

Q.テつ Last year he was.
JOHN COOK:テつ Yeah, I thought he made the Schwab Cup, so.

Q.テつ He did.
JOHN COOK:テつ So, you know.テつ I wish they would have an age limit 65 and anybody over 65 ‑‑ oh, Hi Hale.
I like to.
HALE IRWIN:テつ Come on, I got to go take my Geritol.
JOHN COOK:テつ You know me, I'm a big talker.テつ No, I think it's fantastic.テつ I admire these guys so much and when you can shoot your age in a Major Championship they ought to give you bonus points.テつ Lift, clean, and throw or something.テつ For the rest of the week.
KELLY ELBIN:テつ John Cook, tied for the lead midway through the Senior PGA Championship.テつ Thank you, John.

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