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April 22, 2000

Andrew Magee


TODD BUDNICK: We have Andrew Magee, who shot a 4-under, 68, with no bogeys today; and he stands at -10 for the tournament. Let's go through your birdies today, starting off with No. 1.

ANDREW MAGEE: Well, I hit a good drive on the first hole. I hit a wedge about 3 feet and made a birdie. I was happy to get off to a good start making a birdie. I've got a little thing that I always think about when I birdie the first hole. It's not necessarily going to be my best day. And today I birdied the first hole, and my next goal is to make another birdie as soon as I can, so I can erase that one birdie only that I might make because I birdied the first hole. I parred a lot of holes. I stayed patient, parred 2 and parred 5 and parred No. 3, which is a great hole out here, probably one of the toughest holes. And I parred No. 4. Good 5-iron, past the pin on the par-3, difficult par-3. And I missed a short birdie putt on 5, the dog-leg right. About 4- to 5-footer, right-to-left and missed. And I like to make those. You know it's a tough day, you're not going to get a lot of balls close to the pin. You get one in there, and you're kind of giving one away. It's hard to get it close. The greens are firming up, and the wind is blowing, and it's a little colder wind. The pins are in difficult spots today. They really put them in the corners, and you had to have the precise club selection and the right yardage and get the right shot in there. So missing a putt on the 5th hole was a little bit unnerving for me. I parred the next couple of holes; made nice long 2-putts. 2-putted No. 8 from long range, second putt for par. Into the rough on 9, I'm making all these balls until I got to about 14. Then I hit a good 6-iron into 14, and hit a good 10-footer for birdie. I made my second birdie that I was thinking of earlier in the round. So show me I'm not going to shoot 71 or 72, this might be a lower round. I always think that way when I birdie the first hole. It's not necessarily going to be a good day when you birdie that first hole. False sense of security when you birdie that first hole. I've had some of my best rounds after I bogeyed the first hole. I've loosened up and gotten a better mindset. Birdying the first hole doesn't necessarily mean it's going to be a great day. I hit a good wedge to 15, and made about an 8-footer for birdie there. And made a heck of a 2-putt on 16; I'm over the collar of the green and rolled down there, and made about a 6-footer for par. I thought I chipped in on 17, and it hit the pin and bounced out. I think par on 17 is a great score. 18, I hit the driver in the left rough and had a super angle at the pin, and hit it right at the flag. And I probably pushed it a little bit, but it had a nice straight-in 8-footer on the last hole; for birdie. Just the way you want to finish off a good day.

Q. So you don't mind a birdie at the last hole, then, just not the first hole?

ANDREW MAGEE: I birdied the last and the first, very astute.

Q. You don't mind a birdie on the last one?

ANDREW MAGEE: I like to birdie the last hole. That gives you a good taste in your mouth for going home tonight and finishing up with a really good score. I had such a good shot. I was really concerned all day long about getting the right angle off the tee to come into these pins on the corner, because you need to attack it. From an angle up the green, if you can get a good angle, like 18, you want to be way left on the left side of the fairway. It's hard to get it with a left-and-right wind in your face -- so 16, I was thinking about getting on the right side. So I had a good angle to the pin and left in the rough. I had some good angles at the pins, although I was in the rough. I've had some pretty bad lies in the rough. If you get it going towards the green, which I didn't seem too concerned about the last hole.

Q. Feel like you made up lot of ground and you're in good position?

ANDREW MAGEE: I feel like I made up a lot of ground. Hal didn't go crazy and shoot another 65. Today was tough. It was tough conditions. I'm thrilled with my round. I played solid and hit the ball solid and made some nice putts. It's just the game of golf, I had a good day.

Q. How close you think that you need to get to a player like Hal to have a legitimate chance on Sunday?

ANDREW MAGEE: You can't rattle Hal; he's a solid veteran. He's not going to shoot 75 tomorrow. He's going to shoot par or better. He's one of our most accurate drivers on Tour. I was thinking about Hal when I was teeing off today. To try to hit that fairway he hit on 18 at TPC at Sawgrass, he needed to hit that fairway in a big way against Tiger, and he did. He had such determination on his shot. You could see it on his face. And I was thinking about if I couldn't beat Hal Sutton off the tee today on some of those first holes. It didn't work for me. Maybe I'll try again tomorrow.

Q. You obviously then watched the conclusion of THE PLAYERS Championship?


Q. You see him able to hold off a guy like Tiger, does it make you wonder what you need to do?

ANDREW MAGEE: No, I know what I've got to do, I have to play great golf. I have to hit the ball in the fairway more often tomorrow, and give myself better birdie opportunities in the middle of my round. Today I had too many long putts; I made some nice par saves with long 2-putts. I need to hit more fairways, be more patient, attack the pins a little more, and try to put some pressure on him myself. I picked up some ground today. He was 13-under and I was 6 -, 7- -- I picked up 4 shots. That's pretty good.

Q. You missed the cut in your last two tournaments. What's been going on?

ANDREW MAGEE: I've had a bit of an elbow problem, tennis elbow. And I didn't play all through Florida. I was -- had a Cortisone shot the week of Bay Hill, and it was hurting every time I hit a ball. And I had to take care of that before I could come out and feel comfortable playing again. So I've taken a lot of time off and tried to really rest it. It hasn't caused me any problem since then. I came out to TPC, not really having practiced or played for a week. I haven't made the cut there in years anyway, so that's no big deal. But in a $6 million purse, you want to go give it a try. I have a tough time there, and I didn't miss it by much. I was close. A couple of weeks off, and they're we go again. The Tour never goes away.

Q. Your left elbow?

ANDREW MAGEE: Right elbow.

Q. You were right up against the collar of the rough on 17. Did you think you had a chance for get that close?

ANDREW MAGEE: I didn't have as near as bad a lie as it looked. When I walked up, the shot -- it looked like I was right up against the collar. Is it that sturdy grass or is it going to give easily? And it gave easily. And it was actually -- it wasn't a problem, at all. It wasn't a problem at all. It kind of turned my shot into -- I'm thinking now about making the shot, not just getting it close.

Q. How far was that?

ANDREW MAGEE: That chip on 17 was probably 30 feet.

Q. You looked like you thought it was going to make it?

ANDREW MAGEE: I thought it might break right and kind of fall off, but it stayed straight. And I thought, "Oh, my God, it's going in the hole." And it didn't go in the hole.

Q. Could it possibly have gone in if the pin was out?

ANDREW MAGEE: Yes. But making par on 17, that's a tough hole. And the green's very firm. I think it's one of the firmest greens on the course. You have to adjust a little more there.

Q. Ever squared off head-to-head with Hal on any other event?

ANDREW MAGEE: No, not that I can remember.

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