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August 22, 2012

Paula Creamer


THE MODERATOR:¬† We'd like to welcome Paula Creamer into the interview room.¬† Thank you so much for joining us today.¬† Always great to have you here with the media.¬† I know as I asked Suzann, you just got finished up with the Pro‑Am, take me through the golf course and what we can expect out there this week?
PAULA CREAMER:  It's a challenge around here.  It's definitely two totally different nines.  The front nine is very hilly, undulated greens.  Just really important to stay below the hole on almost all of them.  The back nine you can make a couple more bigger moves, I think.  It's a little more straightforward, and the greens are a little bit flatter.  But they are getting so firm.
I've had balls that are just hitting and taking the biggest bounces.  Come Sunday and the weekend, it's going to be a good test for sure, but I like it.  I think it kind of fits everybody.  There are a couple of holes where the long hitters will take advantage of.  But, overall, if you're not in the short grass and giving yourself good looks, it's going to be a long day.
THE MODERATOR:  When Suzann was asked about it, she said you might see some magnificent one putts and some four putts on these greens.  That's just how tricky these greens are going to play.
PAULA CREAMER:  There are some kind of crazy ones out there, for sure, especially chipping, too.  It's some thick rough.  You're not going to hit 18 greens, but you're going to have to be able to save some par putts.  You might hole some long ones that you get lucky with.  But you have to give and take out on this golf course.  When you want to be aggressive, it might not be the play.
THE MODERATOR:  We've talked about your game this year and we've seen some great performances where it seems everything is coming together.  How are you feeling about your game heading into this week?
PAULA CREAMER:  I feel really good.  I've been working really hard on the driving range the last couple of days.  The Sunday finish that I had in Portland was unacceptable to me.  I was just very disappointed in how I finished.  It definitely motivated me.
I feel good, I feel positive.  Like I said, the golf course suits my eye well, and all I can ask for is four good days of golf, and continue doing what I've been doing.

Q.  How would you describe the state of the LPGA Tour?
PAULA CREAMER:  I think we've definitely had our highs and lows.  That's for sure.  But I think that we're going in the right direction.  You're getting to meet a lot of the players, a little bit more personality type things that we're doing with our Tour and finding out a little more about the person, not necessarily just the golfer.
We're getting more events.  I think that's important.  Obviously, I'm an American and we live in the States, so I do want to have a few more tournaments at home.  But it is nice to be able to travel.  I'm a very global player.  But just because we're on a national tour membership, doesn't mean we do need to go all over the place.
But coming here is one of my favorite spots.  I think the Tour does a good job.  Getting Waterloo and having a new event there just shows that we are headed down the right path.

Q.  You see the diversity of the Tour as one of its strengths?
PAULA CREAMER:  I think so.  It is.  Like I said, it's very international.  There are lots of players in the mix.  You want to go out and represent yourself well and represent your country well.

Q.  Given the fact that this course doesn't seem to cater to anybody specifically, does that mean that maybe we're going to see those golfers the top golfers such as yourself maybe shine a little more because they have all the tools in the bag?
PAULA CREAMER:  I think so.  This is an open.  They're going to make it hard.  They're going to make it difficult.  The pin placement that they can put on these greens, they can make us look like fools or make us look great.  I think a lot of it is going to come down to how they want to set it up for us.  It doesn't just cater to one person.
That's kind of what you want.  You want to be able to have all the shots.  You want to be able to hit your long clubs, your short clubs, your wedges, things like that.  Every part of the game.

Q.  Do you like that?
PAULA CREAMER:¬† I do, the harder, the better.¬† When you have to think and you and your caddie have to come up with certain plans and sometimes it's not necessarily going to be‑‑ you're going to hit a shot, and it might be three or four yards short of the green, but you got an uphill putt.¬† That's something you might not necessarily see on other golf courses.

Q.  Is there a favorite right now that you like to go to?  Is there anything playing that well that it stands out?
PAULA CREAMER:  It's hard.  I can't answer that question.  Like I said, it will be interesting to see how they set it up for us as well.  Hopefully if the weather keeps staying like this, these greens will be so firm, it will be funny at times.  If we're lucky by Saturday and Sunday, the umbrella will be out all day.

Q.  Bring it everywhere anyway?
PAULA CREAMER:  Everywhere we go, yes.

Q.  How do you measure a year where you play well but don't necessarily win?
PAULA CREAMER:  It's hard.  Me, personally, I care about winning and going out and being the best that I can be and being in contention, and fighting for that and grinding it out.  It's difficult.  It's been the hardest year for me so far.  Last year was difficult, but in a different way.  I was still trying to get over my thumb surgery and things like that.  Now you look at it different and say how can I get there, and it is hard.
But golf, I'm going to be out here for a long time, and I have to overcome those hurdles.  It makes you tougher, it makes you stronger.
THE MODERATOR:  Talking about enjoying being out here in Canada, have you gotten to see a little Vancouver?  Have you been here before?
PAULA CREAMER:¬† I was here several years ago.¬† I played in a junior tournament at Victoria Island.¬† We didn't get to the city or anything like that.¬† But I went to the city last night for a meet and greet with one of my sponsors, SAP.¬† It is just so beautiful.¬† I saw the stadium and everything.¬† Hopefully we'll go back and do a little bit more.¬† With the early‑late tee times, it kind of caters to that.¬† So it will be nice to go to the city.
I want to meet Brooke, the young Canadian here.  It would be fun to talk to her.  Maybe she can give me some pointers on places where to go and what not.

Q.  So there are 48 of the top 50 women's golfers here.  How does this feel compared to other tournaments that you've played in this season?
PAULA CREAMER:  48 of the top 50, that's pretty good.  That's very good.  It shows a lot about CN and the event, and the people here in Canada.  It is so welcoming, everybody is so nice.  There are volunteers everywhere.  They just love the LPGA and support us.
To miss this event, you would be crazy, because they do such a good job.  You play a fun golf course, and the venue keeps changing and all of that shows when top players come to it, how good the event really is.

Q.  You mentioned Brooke.  Have you seen her swing on the range at all yet?
PAULA CREAMER:¬† I haven't.¬† I haven't bumped into her.¬† It's tough practice days and things like that.¬† But I think we're in the same wave.¬† I think she's early‑late also.¬† So hopefully I'll see her tomorrow and say good luck and we'll see.

Q.  What does it make you feel like you're still relatively young when you see someone 14 coming up.  You're a veteran.
PAULA CREAMER:  I am.  I'm 26, I'm getting old.  It's the way golf is.  Age is just a number.  I still feel like I'm learning new things every day I come out here.  I learn new things about myself, about golf, and just what works best for me.  This is my 8th year, like I said.  Not a day goes by where I don't look at what I've accomplished or what I want to accomplish.
To see someone like that coming through the ranks is pretty neat.  It's inspiring to know that you can kind of help out too.  You never know what will happen.

Q.  What advice would you give her?
PAULA CREAMER:  To enjoy it, to embrace this week.  You're playing in front of your home crowd.  There is nothing better than that.  Not put too much pressure on yourself.  Like I said about me, it's a long career.  You're out here for a long time, don't rush things.  Really try to figure out what works best.

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