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May 23, 2013

Tom Watson


Q.テつ Kind of curious, you grew up here, you probably played more than your fair share of round on this golf course over the years, right?
TOM WATSON:テつ Actually not.テつ I haven't played too many rounds here at all.テつ I played the U.S. Senior Open her and the PGA.

Q.テつ Okay.テつ Is there any sort of familiarity with the course?
TOM WATSON:テつ Yes, there is.テつ I have, there was some places there that, like the last hole, the ninth hole that I played, which is my 18th today, hitting up that hill, to judge how much more club you have to have to hit it up the hill and hit the right distance is, it takes a bunch of times doing it to learn how to do that.テつ Today I guessed right and I was very happy with that shot.

Q.テつ It also seemed like on your back nine there were a lot of tee shots that were really in the right place.
TOM WATSON:テつ Well, I put the ball in play ‑‑ let's put it this way:テつ I put it in nine bunkers today.テつ And the bunkers were actually my friend today.テつ I guess I had ‑‑ the putter was my friend.テつ I made four bombs today.テつ And I put it in nine bunkers.テつ It was a round of‑‑ it was a very interesting round.テつ I didn't hit the ball very well.テつ I hit the ball off line a bunch of times, but I putted extremely well and out of the bunkers I played well.
So there were a couple of bright spots there, but I would like to be hitting the ball from the fairway a few more times.テつ I didn't do that today.

Q.テつ Do you have any idea what the weather is supposed to be like tomorrow morning?
TOM WATSON:テつ I think it's going to be a little chilly but I don't think we're going to get any rain tomorrow morning.テつ We had some light rain today that we had to deal with, which wasn't bad, but it slowed the greens up enough to where the speed gets a little bit off, you start leaving the putts short and but today I didn't have too much trouble with the feel of the greens.テつ I made some, as I said, I made some bombs today, which was kind of like the Watson of old.

Q.テつ How big was that putt on your ninth hole, 18 to save par there?
TOM WATSON:テつ Well, that was one of the bombs.テつ I made a bomb at 10, for par.テつ I made it from about 20 feet at 10 for par.
Then I made it from about 30 feet at 18 for par.テつ And those are ‑‑ the back of your mind you're saying well I bogeyed this hole, but stranger things have happened and a couple, those putts went in, plus a couple long putts that I made for birdies and here I am a couple under par.テつ It really was about a 3‑over par round that my putting turned into a 2‑under par round.

Q.テつ You've always been a rather competitive guy, if you were playing in your prime now, I'm assuming there's probably got to be one or two guys that you probably didn't get along with.テつ Could you have stood up to this scrutiny that these guys like for example Tiger and Sergio with the social media that's out there?
TOM WATSON:テつ I'm not going to get into that.

Q.テつ I'm not asking you about them specifically, I'm asking you about in the past, could you guys have‑‑
TOM WATSON:テつ I'm not going to get into that.テつ No.

Q.テつ Regarding the weather, this is kind of in your wheel house.
TOM WATSON:テつ Well, I don't play badly in bad weather.テつ I kind of relish it.テつ But again when you have the rain like this it seems like the ball's not going quite as far and I don't know if that is 63 years old talking or the rain, but I played some shots that came up short today and that ‑‑ the ego gets in the way.テつ It just simply does.
I hit one good shot at, a good 3‑iron from the fairway at number 5.テつ I hit it, that was the best iron I hit all day.
Plus I hit a great iron from the bunker at No. 9 to hit it about six feet.テつ But then missed the putt.テつ But those are the two shots that I was most proud of today, besides the four bombs that I made.テつ That was Watson of old.テつ Those 20 and 30 footers for par and made a couple of 30‑footers for birdies and turned a 74 into a 69.

Q.テつ 2‑under, you got to be feeling pretty darn good going into round two.
TOM WATSON:テつ Well, I feel very lucky.テつ You don't expect to make the types of putts I made, that I made today.テつ So I hope my ball striking gets a little bit more consistent and that I don't have, I don't leave myself with 30‑footers for pars.

Q.テつ What's the likelihood, say in your lifetime, that we'll see a player over 50 earn his way on to the Ryder Cup team?
TOM WATSON:テつ I think there's a strong likelihood, I really do.テつ I think that there's no sense that the players of 50 years old can't compete.
Ray Floyd is a good example.テつ He competed and won over age 50 on the Regular Tour.テつ And of course you have Sam Snead too, if you go way back.テつ Sam competed very successfully on the Regular Tour until he was in his 60s.

Q.テつ I'm not saying for this next team, but as a captain, that would not be an obstacle for you, age, you take the player just because they belong.
TOM WATSON:テつ You take the player based on his ability and his merit.テつ It would be awfully hard to pick somebody playing on the Champions Tour to play in the Ryder Cup team because they're not playing against the best competition, which is the Regular Tour.テつ That's simple fact.テつ But there are some players that could play and probably ‑‑ and compete ‑‑ and I'm not saying that's not going to happen in the future.

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