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June 1, 2014

Christina Kim


Q.  You haven't been in contention in a while.  How was it out there?  Was it as fun as you thought it would be?
CHRISTINA KIM:  Yeah.  I had a great time.  I mean fortunately I had a great pairing with Jennifer Johnson and Stacy, and we just had a blast, you know.  It was a lot of fun.
I was pretty slow to start, was one over through a bit of my round and then made a little run to put a little fire under Stacy's behind.  And it was just great watching her.
Like you said, I hadn't been in contention in a while, so I kind of forgot what it was like having nerves, and kind of showed on the last hole.  But I didn't want to make it look like it was going to be a close victory for Stacy, so I was either going to be like one shot behind or like 10, so I went for the latter.  I wanted to make it look like a blow‑out victory for her.

Q.  Got a little emotional there coming off the green.  Run me through that.
CHRISTINA KIM:  Yeah, I hadn't‑‑ I've been through a lot, so, you know, I've‑‑ I've been through a lot, so golf is one of my sanctuaries, and is when you're not‑‑ you almost feel like you're not welcome home, with some of the numbers I've been putting up the last several years due to injury and being messed up in the head and things like that, you know, you feel very‑‑ it's just a flood of emotions.  I mean I don't‑‑ I don't know‑‑ you know, I've just worked so hard, even working through the injury and working, you know, through the emotions and everything and just, you know, having‑‑ trying to continue to have faith in myself, it's just‑‑ it's very difficult, especially when you feel like you're just getting kicked in the teeth every week.
But you know, golf is, like I said, it's my sanctuary, and it's so much fun.  And like I said yesterday, it's just a game, but it still means more to me than most things in this world.

Q.  And how much did it mean to you just to see how much the fans embraced you this week being back in contention?  It seemed like everyone just loved having you back up there.
CHRISTINA KIM:  Yeah, that was huge for me as well, you know, me having people shout my name and telling me that they're rooting for me, it always brings a smile to my face, because you know, they could be picking anybody out in the field, and you know, I would suggest they probably pick Stacy since she's No. 1 in the world.
But you know, the fans, they mean everything to us, and without the fans, we would have nothing to play for, you know.  And you know, people that like I say, come out here and are willing to waste an entire perfect Sunday afternoon and come watch us chase around a little white golf ball, it's very special and it's very touching.

Q.  Is the game starting to get back to the level it was before?  It seems like week after week you're progressively getting better and better since you've come back.
CHRISTINA KIM:  Yeah, like I said, I've worked really hard for this, and you know, people like Stacy and one of my best friends on tour, Michelle Wie have really inspired me to want to try to play better and figure out a way to make the scores happen, you know, regardless of, you know, like I‑‑ you know, hit it in the bunker and then had to take an unplayable on the last hole and was still able to come runner‑up finish to Stacy.
Just watching those two have been really inspirational and also seeing someone like Karrie Webb, who's been out on tour for 19 years now and she's always been an inspiration since I first met her in like 1999, and I was there when she won her U. S. Open at Pine Needles was my first Open ever.  There's just so many people, Meg Mallon, Beth Daniel, Nancy Lopez, throughout the dawn of golf, there's so many people that have inspired me that it just‑‑ it gives me something to play for.

Q.  I think with this week you'll be back up, even despite taking two months off, be back inside the Top‑25 on the Money List?

Q.  You don't think so?
CHRISTINA KIM:  No.  I was 33.  I'll probably move up to like 30‑‑ I'm going 32.  I'm guessing 32.  I don't even know what the numbers are.

Q.  What's it mean to you, just to see that?  Kind of shows your progress, don't you think?
CHRISTINA KIM:  Yeah, I mean I know how great this tour is and how competitive this tour is, and you know, it's important to me, but at the end I don't really like looking at where I am on the Money List, because it shows a comparison of how I'm playing versus other people on tour.

Q.  Right.
CHRISTINA KIM:  And for me it's just about seeing how I play, you know.  And you know, I wouldn't be nearly as embarrassed if I didn't have to take a double on the last hole and finish runner up, but, you know, there's a lot of positives to this week, so I'm thrilled.
You know, it's nice to see.  There's no question.  It's nice to see, but at the end of the day that's not what what's making me go to sleep at night.

Q.  You talked about the nerves coming up the last.  Did you miss that?
CHRISTINA KIM:  Nope.  I really, really didn't.  (Laughs).  Because you could tell on 18, they suck (laughs).  No.  It was different.  That's for sure.  It was incredible, and it was just‑‑ it was so much fun, but yeah, I think I'll be better off the next time around, once I get back into contention a little bit more, it won't be nearly as nerve wracking or terrifying or exciting or thrilling or blood pumping or whatever, whatever words you want to use to describe it.  I don't need that.  I got enough stress in my life.  As long as I can be okay being in contention, I'll be all right.  But it won't be nearly as scary the second time around.

Q.  Is a win coming this year then?
CHRISTINA KIM:  We'll see.  I don't know.  All I know is I can play my best, and if that ends up being the best score at the end of the week, it is, and if it doesn't, it isn't.  And wins are important, you know, for your history and your records and this and that, but like I said, where I finish on the Money List, and you know, how many wins I do or don't have is not going to make me a better or worse person.  I know I'm a good human being and I care about others, and victories won't make those things greater or lessen them.

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