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October 12, 2004

Scott Drummond


GORDON SIMPSON: Scott, welcome to the HSBC World Match Play. You made a name for yourself here in May and I think you've got a chance to make a name for yourself again tomorrow. Just give us your thoughts on playing Ernie Els in the first round.

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Well, I'm excited I think, first off. You know, coming on to the tour this year, obviously the win here in May sort of threw me right into some of the limelight and I've had some great experiences since then. This is just one of many great experiences really in the last five months. A chance to play head-to-head against world No. 2, is something I could have only dreamed of at the start of the year. And you know, it's just really exciting, like I said.

GORDON SIMPSON: And how would you assess your chances tomorrow? Is it one of these where you've got nothing to lose really and he's got everything to lose?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, I suppose it is in a way. Match-play, as well, so anything can happen. Obviously Ernie's been playing great, and if I'm going to have a chance to beat him I'm going to need to play exceptionally well and put up something similar to what I did here in May I would imagine. But my game has been pretty good. I've been pleased tee-to-green with the way I've been playing. If I can find a few more putts to go in, then it should be a good match.

Q. Have you felt any great weight of expectation since you won here? Because your results have been sort of not quite as stunning.

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, I think so. I mean, I said at the time I wasn't going to put any pressure on myself to get some good results straightaway after the win.

Having said that, I've been disappointed with some of my results. I've played nicely at times but not quite scored as well as I could have. Certainly that's been the case the last two weeks. I've played tee-to-green as well as I played when I won here in May but haven't scored. Putts haven't dropped in for me and that's been disappointing.

But yeah there has been obviously a high level of expectation from the public and other people, straight after the win. But you know, it's my rookie year and it's been a big learning curve for me, and to get thrown in there, with a win at the PGA, is thrown into some big tournaments and some World events and a major in America. I felt I played nicely there which was pleasing, but I've just taken everything on board really this year and great experiences and just trying to learn from it all really.

Q. Is there still an element of this is all make-believe, that you are a Tour rookie, and here you are one of 16 players playing for a million pounds?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, I suppose it certainly feels a bit that way this week. You know, things calmed down within a few weeks of the win, and I was kind of able to get back and try and focus on getting some good results while looking forward to some great tournaments.

But then you know right in here this week, or the kind of build-up to it last week, at times I do have to pinch myself. I look at some of my mates who are still on the Challenge Tour and they are getting down to their last few events and they are desperately trying to win a few thousand Euros to get onto the Tour next year. At times, it just seems a lifetime ago that I was playing on the Challenge Tour. But, you know at the same time it's only a matter of a few months. Weeks like this, certainly, at times it is quite hard to believe.

GORDON SIMPSON: Were any of your guys playing at Donnington this week over at Newbury.

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, there's quite a few. I think it's the last event before the grand finale, so everyone is pushing for it, yeah. I've had a few text messages since the Tour came out, guys obviously wishing me luck and saying, you know what a great draw it is to get a chance to play against someone like Ernie. Make the most of it and enjoy it and play your own game and all sorts of messages of support and things like that.

Q. When you were playing on the Challenge Tour as you were saying, less than a year ago effectively, could you have possibly envisaged that by this October, you would be playing in this event?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: No, not at all. I went through my schedule at the start of the year, and I tried to sort of work out a schedule, how I thought it was going to be best to play the year, try to the to play more than four weeks in a row. The first thing I did, I went and scored off all the World events, U.S. PGA, World Match-Play, I scored them all off and built my schedule around that. So it's been -- it's certainly would have been a dream obviously, but it certainly wasn't in my thoughts at start of the year to play any of these tournaments.

GORDON SIMPSON: What was the main one on your list?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: The main one was actually the PGA. Obviously, trying to qualify for the British Open. But aside from that there was at Deutsche Bank and there was the PGA, two massive weeks in a row, which everyone had said, you know, if you play a little stretch of big-money tournaments or six or seven tournaments, if you can play well in those, you can pretty much get your card signed up for the next year. So, yeah, they were my big events, yeah.

Q. Even though you are playing against a player like Ernie Els in the first round, do you actually feel that it is an environment in which you belong, or do you feel seriously daunted by some of the names that you are now playing alongside of and expected to compete with?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: No, I've actually felt really comfortable playing the World events. A couple of weeks ago in Ireland, and I played over at the Invitational at Firestone, I felt really comfortable actually. I've played some practice rounds with some of the guys. I played with Ernie a couple of weeks ago and Padraig, and I felt very comfortable. I suppose that's because I've got confident in myself and confidence in my own game that when I play well; I can compete with these guys.

Certainly not feeling daunted. I had an inkling think was going to get drawn against Ernie. Someone said to me how they thought how the draw was going to work with the World Rankings, so I had an inkling I was going to get Ernie in the first round.

But everyone that's playing this week is a good player, and whether you get them in the first round or the second or the final, you're here to win a match each day and just go ahead and do my best.

Q. Did that come up before or after your practice round with Ernie?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: After. That was last week, I think it was Thomas Levet, actually on the flight down Sunday night. He said how he thought -- I said, "When do you think the draw will be done"?

He said, "I don't know, but I think they will do it by World Rankings." He worked it out, obviously would have been Vijay, but Ernie being the defending champion, so he'll be the No. 1 seed.

Q. What's your match-play record like, and how do you approach match-play? Do you like this form of golf?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, I've not played it since I've turned pro. I actually have to think back to my record, but I've always enjoyed playing match-play right from when I was a junior playing club golf and I had quite a good record then. I think my England amateur career was quite good. I was pretty good at singles and used play a lot with Steve Webster in the foursomes and we had a pretty good record as well.

So I've always played okay match-play. I think my record is quite good. But like I say, I have not played for about nine years, so that's going to be another revisiting of an experience I've not had in a long time by playing match-play.

Q. What's the difference in the format?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Well, it's just a case of certainly when I've watched this vent in previous years, the scoring has always been ridiculously low, so it's just a case of trying to make as many birdies as you can. I think from my point of view, whether I was playing Ernie or whether I was playing someone else this week, my game plan would be to try and give myself a birdie putt on every hole, and you have to putt well regardless of how well you play tee-to-green. You've got to putt well and get those birdie putts in if you can have a chance of beating someone, whether it's Ernie or whether it's someone else.

Q. What's your accommodation this week, and what's some of the greatest accommodation you've ever had?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Well, I slept in the car for one day.

Q. Where was that?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: That was over in Geneva, actually, Challenge Tour event. I was with Gary Harris at this time and we could not afford a hotel room. We got over there and it was so expensive we could not believe it, so we slept in the car.

If I compare this week to the PGA, we stayed in the Travel Inn for the PGA down the road at Bagshot and Kiera was only four weeks old. Claire was breast-feeding at the time and it was quite difficult in a room like a Travel Inn room. And at the start of the week, it was the first week out to play around the baby, and I thought this is potentially not going to be the best thing to do. Monday, Tuesday night I was a little bit concerned about how it might affect me for the rest of the week.

Actually every morning that week of the PGA, I slept on the floor for about an hour once Kiera had woken up in the morning to get a bit of extra sleep before I played. So that was my experience at the PGA. And we were just eating take-away in the room because we not go out for a meal really with Kiera being so young.

And then this week we are staying at Pennyhill Park which is a five-star job and everything paid for, and it's just a million miles away from what it was at the PGA.

Q. Have you seen any other players there?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: No, I've not actually seen hardly anyone at Pennyhill. It's pretty quiet.

GORDON SIMPSON: It's about a mile from the Travel Inn, as well.

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, it's the same stretch of road. It's quite ironic really.

GORDON SIMPSON: Not a million miles away at all.

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, not distance-wise. I think when I checked in with Claire and saw the apartment we have there is absolutely beautiful, I said to her, it's just amazing, you compare this to a few months ago when we were here for the PGA. Again. It's something which, you know, you have to pinch yourself and realize that it's actually -- it's actually happened. It's just a great experience this week. Week-to-week, something new is happening and a new opportunity and it's just been wonderful.

Q. What are your realistic expectations for this week, and now that the season is coming to an end, have you started to sort of think about next season and what your realistic aims are going to be for that?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, obviously after the win, I have to re-set some goals for the year because coming on to the Tour, the first goal was to keep my card and second goal was to try to win Rookie of the Year. So from Wentworth onward, I've had to try and re-evaluate my goals. My aim has been to try to finish in the Top 15 on the Order of Merit and that's still my goal for the rest of the season. There's only a couple of tournaments left. You know this week, obviously, get through a few rounds here or get to a final is a huge, huge impact on the Order of Merit and the Volvo Masters in a couple of weeks time.

So I suppose my expectations for the week of a match-play tournament where anything can happen, I just want to go out and play the best I can each day regardless of who I'm playing. Obviously first round draw against Ernie, I've got to play exceptionally well to have a chance to beat him. He's been in great form recently.

But I know I can shoot some low scores around this course and I'll be keen to do that starting on Thursday. Whether I go all the way or get through to the final or get through a couple of rounds or just have a great match against Ernie, it will be a great week for me and a great experience.

As far as next year goes, I've not really thought that far ahead, it's been so manic for the last few months, I'm actually looking forward to a few weeks off possibly in December, just to take it all in, reflect on the year and set myself some goals and some targets for next year.

Q. If Ernie Els is Arsenal or Manchester United and this is the third round of the FA Cup, who are you?

GORDON SIMPSON: Don't mention Scotland.

SCOTT DRUMMOND: That a difficult one, really.

Q. Because you're here of your own right, aren't you?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, exactly. Everyone here has earned their right to play. And my World Ranking may be outside the Top-100 now or whatever now, so that's compared to the start of the year, then I'm very pleased. It's hard to say.

Obviously the pressure is on someone like Ernie, you know, defending champion, world No. 2, and he's got much more pressure on him during his match than I have. I've got nothing to lose. People aren't necessarily going to expect me to win or even give Ernie a good contest. You know, I have played well here. I'm happy with my game at the moment. I'll go out Thursday and Ernie will want to beat me 10 & 8 and I'd like to beat Ernie 10 & 8 but hopefully we both play well and we have a great match. I'm just really looking forward to it.

Q. Have you had a practice round this week?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: I'm actually going to play this afternoon if it stops raining or calms down a little bit.

Q. Wondering how much you think it will be different, the course playing, to the way that it played in May when you won?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, the PGA was the only time I've played here, so I have no experience what the course is like in autumn or approaching winter now. I imagine it's going to be slightly softer. It gets quite dry and bouncy at times during that PGA week with the good weather. I imagine it will be a little softer and probably playing a little longer but in great condition. Greens are obviously fantastic all year round here. So I think it will just play slightly longer, I would imagine.

Q. Do you have a video of your win?

SCOTT DRUMMOND: Yeah, I do. I haven't had time to watch it recently but the guy I work with, my mind coach, he always says to me, you know when I've got some spare time to get the videos out, and also the Dimension Data used to be the one I watched when I played against Retief and played really nicely there. It's obviously great to watch those and get all of the feelings back for how you played the course and how you're feeling at the time and obviously lifts your confidence.

But I've played some great tournaments just recently, the Dunhill Links last week and the WGC in Ireland, and just being involved in tournaments like that obviously lifts your confidence and makes you feel good about yourself. If I had time I probably would have got the video -- I haven't got it with me this week, no.

GORDON SIMPSON: Well, enjoy this afternoon and have a great match on Thursday.

End of FastScripts.

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