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March 8, 2003

Jim Furyk


JOHN BUSH: Jim, thanks for coming by the interview room. 13-under par. A good round today and it is shaping up for quite a finish tomorrow.

JIM FURYK: Yes, it was a good start today. The bad news is I shot one over on the backside, good news is you don't often get to shoot one over on the backside and have a chance to win the tournament. I went to work on a few changes at the range. I actually hit the ball better on the backside than the front. I didn't score on the holes like I did all week. It's the only bad nine holes that I have played so far. Hopefully I will go out tomorrow get it going early again and sustain it through the back nine.

JOHN BUSH: If you can take us through the round.

JIM FURYK: One was playing short again. I hit a good drive and I believe a 6-iron, ended up just short left of the green to the short cut of rough. I had an easy pitch shot from about 20, 25 feet chipped up to about a foot.

I hit a 3-iron off the 2nd tee and a little 9-iron to about 20 feet. Knocked in a 20-footer there.

I had a good par save at No. 3 and a great par save at No. 6. Where I got into trouble off the tee and made good pars to keep it going.

I eagled 8 again for the second day in a row, a driver and a 4-wood on to the front right of the green. That was a good 40, 50 feet.

Q. 42.

JIM FURYK: That was a good guess. When you are trying to get up close, tap it in and get out of there and I got the bonus, it went in. I didn't particularly like the way -- I didn't birdie 10 or 12.

10 I hit a 3-wood up in the rough. I was 211 yards from the front. I drew a pretty good lie that was 210 and six inches. I think it was 211 to the front. And I got the biggest jumper lie, had a great lie, I took an 8-iron and tried to knock it over on the left side and thought it would run up there 20 yards short. I ran it up within about six or seven yards in the front of the green. I hit it over 200 yards. It's like the British Open out there. I didn't get down in 2. I used a putter and left it ten feet short. I hit the second putt and it broke out.

I got in trouble, 13, 14, 15 just poor display with the putter. I hit a good shot with the 4-wood. I hit a decent shot, I'm getting a little nervous about my distances now, left it three and a half feet. I had a slider left to right and I just punched it a little bit, lipped it out. So I made bogey there.

14 I hit a good drive, had an 8-iron to the green. Hit it harder than I wanted, knocked it short to the back of the green. I had a lousy putt, left it six feet short right. I hit a great second putt just exactly where I wanted to and it didn't go in. I can't really blame it on the second one. The first one was just a bad roll.

And 15 I had -- I collected my thoughts, still only a couple of shots back at the time, tried not to get down on myself. I hit a great 7-iron to 15 about seven feet from the hole. I hit a bad putt again. I pushed it a little bit, left it out to the right. At the time I still have to keep talking to myself that I was still only two shots back. The birdie at 16 helped.

17 I would have liked -- I had about a half wedge, a gap wedge into 17. I would have like to gotten closer and give myself a better opportunity. I hung my iron shot a little on 18, it was a good up and down. All of the holes I played good I scored lousy on, and all the holes that I didn't play that great on, I ended up making par. The only lapse was 13 to 15 where I definitely wasted easily two shots. But you know, so did everyone somewhere today. Mine came right in a row. And probably more glaring.

Like I said, the bad news is I shoot 37 on the back. Good news is one shot back tomorrow and I feel pretty good about my game so I need to go out and do well.

JOHN BUSH: What did you do on 16?

JIM FURYK: I hit a 3-wood off the tee and a sand wedge to about seven feet.

JOHN BUSH: Questions.

Q. Jim, what does it say we just figured this out one guy under 30 years old in the top 25, is it still, no matter what we talk about, no matter how many times we write about the younger guys on Tour is this still a game where there is something to be said, nothing what you are doing, being a veteran -- (inaudible) --

JIM FURYK: This might be the only event this year that you can say that. There is a lot of great young players. I don't think there is maybe anymore course knowledge needed here at Doral than many other stops on the PGA TOUR. Probably just a freak incident. I think that it's kind of -- golf is a game where, sure, when you are younger you are stronger; you have more flexibility, you are a little bit more fearless. You don't have much to worry about in your life other than playing golf. There isn't a lot of responsibility. As you get older, your body deteriorates. You don't hit the ball as hard as you used to. You don't swing as fast as you used to. You gain a lot of maturity in your game. You get a little bit smarter. It's like quarterbacks in the NFL, all of the young ones with all of the ability, some of them do real when, some don't. Some of the old guys don't get the talent; they got the brains and still figure out how to play well. When you catch the middle of your career in golf, which is mid-30's, some guys have physical ability and they are maturing a little bit. It seems a lot of guys peak, that's not always that age. For some guys that peak might be 40, for some guys that peak might be 28. You never know. But you know, there is a lot of great young players out in right now. You are writing a lot about them. I think for a good reason there is a lot more talent out there now at a young age than I can ever remember, definitely a lot more when I was coming in.

Q. You look like your playing pretty well this week despite the blips on the back, you are comfortable. Even though you are a stroke behind, do you feel like this is yours to win tomorrow or is it too wide open?

JIM FURYK: I played with Bob today. He is playing very solid. I know Scott is a competitor. He is a grinder. 6-under today, he is playing real well. I'm not just counting us three in the field. There is a lot of guys, Carlos is tied with me and some guys piled up behind us. So I think that to -- depending on what the weather does tomorrow, I don't know the report, if it's nice and calm like it is today, low numbers can be shot. The course is playing fast. If you get the ball in the fairway you will have short irons in your hand. The greens are really decent. You can get it going out there. It will depend on the weather. I need to fire a good number tomorrow. I do have a lot of confidence in my game right now. I think I played much better probably on Friday. I was beaming with confidence coming in here yesterday and today I played an okay round. I got it in with a decent score. I definitely want to improve on that, I want to play better tomorrow.

Q. Did you go hit putts after the round?

JIM FURYK: No. I went to the range.

Q. Your Ryder Cup teammate with Hoch, 47 years old now, what do you think first when you think of him and how he has been able to hang in there and be competitive, what's his best attribute. Careful.

JIM FURYK: I like Scott actually. Sometimes I wish he would keep his mouth closed a little bit more often. I think that's the beauty of Scott. That's why we all learn to love him so much. He tells you like it is and he is honest. I really -- I have a friendship with him. I like Scott a lot. I would say really there is not a lot of weakness to his game. That he is very consistent. He is a tough competitor. He is a grinder. There is no glaring weakness in his game. He hits the ball very straight, very accurately. I guess he probably doesn't do anything where everyone stands around and oohs and ahhs at how far he hits it or how great he does one specific thing. He is solid throughout the bag in all shots.

Q. People say the same about you to some degree?

JIM FURYK: We probably have similar styles. We would be a very good foursome where we alternate shots. We hit the ball similar lengths. Our swings would drive everyone crazy. So, yes, we have similar style and similar games.

Q. Did you and Bob Tway talk at the beginning of the round, as you see the scoring getting lower and lower and guys getting closer to you or in some cases, passing you?

JIM FURYK: Not about that. We talked on the 1st tee how there is a score board you can see from the 1st tee. I don't know if it's 18 or where it is. An electronic score board you can see that overshadows the putting green. Everyone looked like they were under par, 2, 3, 4 under par. We had heard from guys coming in, there is no wind this morning. And then I think that was the reason for it. We didn't talk about -- Billy Mayfair got it 7-under early and was tied for Bob with the lead about the time we teed off. I noticed it but we didn't talk about it. We chatted a little bit. I'm not an extremely chatty person and Bob isn't either. So we talked. It wasn't like playing with Peter Jacobsen, and all I need to do is listen. We are both pretty quiet in ourselves. We had a friendly round today and chatted a little bit and I shot. I know he is going on vacation in a couple of weeks, but we didn't talk about scores too much.

Q. What Duval was diagnosed with is positional vertigo. I thought you had something like that that was interrelated?

JIM FURYK: Exactly, the same thing, position vertigo.

Q. Would you talk about what that was like and how long it took to sort that out?

JIM FURYK: I think the one thing that I learn in talking about it, it's a different case for every person, the amount of time that it takes to recover is very unique. A lot of doctors told me originally, three or four days you won't even notice it. I have also talked to people that because it got written about a lot, a lot of people wrote me letters, or emailed me or talked to me at tournaments and said that they have been suffering for two and a half years and don't know what to do and it's driving them crazy.

It's different. For me, the first month was pretty bad and I played THE PLAYERS Championship but I was feeling goofy. I withdrew here, committed for Honda, committed for Bay Hill and I kept withdrawing. And I still didn't feel -- I started to feel a little better at PLAYERS but the tournament is 2 miles away. I have to tee it up and try. I played okay with all of that time off. It's a little uncomforting more than anything until you can find out exactly what it is. I would like to talk to David because the guy I saw at home was the best person that I talked to about it and it's a 20 to 30 minute drive from his house. I would like to talk to him and telephone him who to go see.

Q. What was the feeling like?

JIM FURYK: The feeling for me, I'm going to screw up the word, I'm not an English major, it's -- not stigmatism. It means your eyes flutter, I couldn't feel that. When I turn my head a certain way if I played on my back and turned my head to the right my eyes would flutter in such a quick manner that everything just got blurry and it made me as dizzy as I could imagine to the points where I would sit up in bed and I literally just fell down. I got so sick and nauseous and I lost function of my balance from my inner ear. I didn't know what way was up and down, I fell back in the bed. My wife looked at me and said, what's wrong with you? I said I can't explain what happened. I did it again and fell back down. I had to roll over on my stomach and get out of bed that way. Slide out of bed and stand up. I couldn't sit up. It's more scary than anything because I have had a dozen guys out here telling me that they had the same thing and not to worry bit. I had a bunch of people tell me that. More than anything, it scares people at first. It's uncomforting. You don't know what goes wrong. The more nervous, upset you get, the more tired you get. The easier the symptoms come on.

Q. What year was that?

JIM FURYK: Last year.

Q. How long did it take (Inaudible)

JIM FURYK: I think everyone gets it from a different position of their head. That's just what happened to me. I got it the end of February. I woke up with it Friday morning at Match Play. The middle of the night Thursday is when I sat up in bed. I looked at the clock. I couldn't read the numbers. They were two feet away from me because they were so blurry.

In May I was feeling good but I still was very cautious. I could stretch on our fitness trailer and I would never sit up for my back. If I laid down I would get dizzy a little bit. I would never sit straight up. I would always flip over and slide out. People looked at me funny because I would never hop on or up the table. I would say late in the year I had no traces of it. I would say it was bad for a month.

Q. Did you feel it at Muirfield then when you won, did you have a spell or 2?

JIM FURYK: At Muirfield, no. I called my doctor early that week to tell him I was feeling a little funny and give me so ideas of things I could do when I was sleeping or what can I do. We talked a little bit about it. He gave me hints and ideas. I didn't feel bad during the week. I would say by the time the Players Championship rolled around I felt pretty decent. And after May, June, July, perfect. I didn't have any problems with it, but I was always uncomfortable. I still to this day don't sit straight up in bed. I lean over and get up.

Q. Any medication involved?

JIM FURYK: Yes, I didn't like it. There is a drug called antivert. I can't remember. Antivert is the common name of it. It's like a seasickness type drug. It's motion sickness. It also makes you really drowsy. I took that for a few days. I mean I don't really have problems taking medication or antibiotics or Advil, I felt so sluggish that I didn't want to get out of bed. I just wanted to lay around the house and not do anything.

Q. You let it run its course?

JIM FURYK: Let me see if I can remember. There is a drill that I did at this Dr. Green in Jacksonville. I can't believe I can't remember this. It was only a year ago. They take your head through a few range of motions. It's called a Eppeling maneuver, I believe. I'm not sure how to spell it. I don't know how to spell it, no one ever showed me. It's called a Eppeling maneuver. I had one treatment the week before the PLAYERS Championship and I had a treatment on Monday or Tuesday the morning of the PLAYERS Championship, and from that time on I felt a lot better.

Basically in your inner ear you have these hair-like follicles, the facilla, and at the end of them there is calcium crystals. This guy explained it to me. For some reason he thought it was probably in an eye. You could get knocked on the head, fall down. He thought for me it was a viral thing, that these calcium crystals, as you move your head in motion, those facilla sway, and the liquid in your inner ear and those calcium crystals position your brain, they give a signal to your brain of where you are, so you don't fall down when you lean over. Well, he thought that some of these calcium crystals had broken lose bound around my inner ear and when I turned my head a certain way my body lost control of knowing where I was and that's why I would fall down. What they try to do, this maneuver was to bounce those calcium crystals into a chamber of your inner ear and never bother you again.

Q. I imagine it took physical therapy.

JIM FURYK: Literally it took 2 minutes. The doctor, you think he is a quack when he tells you that. But it worked. They put this vibrating mechanism on my ear and took my head through a range of motion for about 90 seconds and looked at me and said you're done, you could go, you're done. I said you got to be kidding me. I walked out of there and felt great. You can look it up on the internet. It's a common procedure. I learned a little bit about it. Positional vertigo is the same thing I have. It will go away. Nothing to get too alarmed about it.

End of FastScripts....

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