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July 14, 2021

Jessica Korda

Nelly Korda

Midland, Michigan, USA

Midland Country Club

Press Conference

JESSICA KORDA: The banter is just great. Honestly we look at people's yards to see their landscaping because the homeowners here have really nice landscaping.

So yeah, it's just great. We really enjoy it. We're just trying to enjoy the entire moment.

THE MODERATOR: Tied for the lead here. Nelly, what do you think about this course brings out the best in your game right now?

NELLY KORDA: I think our games are pretty similar. We know each other really well, and I feel like we're both aggressive. And it's very soft out here this week, so you kind of have to be aggressive.

THE MODERATOR: You got rolling with that first birdie on 1. When you guys were getting ready for today, what was the mindset or game plan? Was someone taking even, someone taking odd?

NELLY KORDA: Yeah, we knew last year already.

JESSICA KORDA: We kind of set a game plan last year and we stuck with it. Obviously playing Solheim Cup after this event last year -- or last time we were here was super helpful, as well.

We have had a pretty good game plan, and our caddies actually went to dinner last night with their books. They're super nerdy about it. I think they were honestly more excited about this whole experience.

Q. What was going so right for you guys do you think in the opening nine holes? I know you had that birdie on 11, but before you made the turn being able to have four birdies and two before you made the turn there, what was going right?

NELLY KORDA: Jess was rolling them in.

JESSICA KORDA: Nelly was putting me close.

NELLY KORDA: It was just good teamwork, honestly.

Q. Throughout this experience, as well, just being back here in this town, we were just talking about the community aspect of this event. Jess, your dog is here this week. You said that you walked two miles this morning with him. What's it like to be back in Midland, Michigan?

JESSICA KORDA: Really like it here. It's got a really small town feel and I thoroughly enjoy that, and I love the downtown that you can walk literally everywhere and everyone is super friendly and the food is delicious.

I mean, we just get treated so well here, so I really, really love coming out here and playing.

NELLY KORDA: Everyone knows everyone.

Q. Nelly, I wanted to start with you. I know we already talked about playing as the world No. 1; was there anything different out there feeling-wise? I know you said you're trying not to think about it too much, but was there any kind of thought process of, Wow, I am the world No. 1 now, or is it just kind of business as usual for you?

NELLY KORDA: Honestly, playing in this team event and playing alongside Jess think made it a lot easier for it to be my first tournament as a world No. 1, but I just had a lot of fun. I was a little nervous on the first tee shot, but after that we just kind of stuck to our plan and had fun.

Q. To that point, and again, I think we've touched on it quite a few times already, but just playing with Jess and being able to have fun with your sister, does it kind of have the feels of playing golf together when you were growing up? Obviously on a big stage like this, but how much fun has it been for you to play alongside your sister in an event like this?

NELLY KORDA: I mean, Jess is five years older, so we didn't really get to play too much golf growing up. Honestly the first time we really got to play was here two years ago together.

Yeah, I mean, I feel like we have a very similar mindset so we both stay really present. We don't get ahead of ourselves, and I think that helps. We have a lot of fun, and as Jess said, our caddies are really good friends, and we all get along really well. Honestly it's a lot of fun out there.

Q. You won the event in Grand Rapids and then the KPMG, took a little time off. I saw a video surface of you hitting a shot left-handed. I had to ask about it. How is your left-handed game? I'm guessing it's a little bit -- I don't want to say worse but a little bit higher than your normal right-handed game?

NELLY KORDA: Actually I really want to get a full set. I don't have one. I actually went out and hit a couple -- my boyfriend is a lefty, so I went out and hit a couple, but I don't have a full set. I would like to, though. I think that would be really fun to do. I don't have an answer to that one because I haven't actually played 18 holes. But I will tell you this: It's probably high.

Q. Jess, we've seen videos of you celebrating with Nelly and being so excited for your sister and all that she's accomplished here in just the last month. Now you get to play alongside her and you'll get to play "together," in quotation marks, in the Olympics. How much fun has it been to see your sister kind of rise to the top of the LPGA Tour?

JESSICA KORDA: Oh, it's really cool. I mean, this is something that doesn't happen often. It's something that you dream of. But not a lot of people reach it.

To have her reach that, it's been incredible, and I'm pretty sure I was the one that texted her like hey, guess what, you're the world No. 1.

So it's been great, and I'm just so excited for her. Clearly now we're just trying -- everyone is just trying to chase her down. There's no one in front of you.


Q. Nelly, outside of playing a couple shots lefty, what else did you do over the last few weeks to celebrate being the new No. 1?

NELLY KORDA: Absolutely nothing.

JESSICA KORDA: Watched our brother play tennis.

NELLY KORDA: Yeah, I was stressed and watched Seb play tennis the first week honestly, and then I took a few days off and then I got back to grinding again. We have a lot of events, important events coming up. You don't even have the time to kind of let it sink in in a sense to kind of enjoy it, but I just took a couple days for myself and just started practicing again.

Q. What did you and the new commissioner talk about yesterday?

NELLY KORDA: Nothing really much. I mean, she just introduced herself kind of again. We met at KPMG, but just about her coming into town and handing Jason the bib.

Q. Jess, you mentioned the experience at the Solheim Cup being helpful today. What in particular from Solheim was helpful for you two today?

JESSICA KORDA: It's the rhythm of it. Alternate-shot is a completely separate beast. A lot of chemistry between the two players is important, and in my opinion having a similar game is really important. That way you hit very similar shots that you're used to, and that's kind of what we were trying to do today, really stay present.

Even though I wasn't hitting, I would still have the number, and like my caddie and I would talk about what we would be hitting and then basically Nelly was hitting the same shot, so it was good.

So yeah, kind of just like that. Like I said, I think chemistry is really important, especially alternate-shot.

Q. And you said you were probably the first person to text Nelly that she became the world No. 1. Would you be happier if you became No. 1 or Nelly becoming No. 1?

JESSICA KORDA: Honestly, it's such a dream come true for her. Honestly, I see her as like a little daughter, as well.

NELLY KORDA: For me, she honestly is my mom.

JESSICA KORDA: So for me I'm so proud, just because I know how hard it is and how hard -- what kind of work it takes. I don't know, everything has to come together. Like the level of golf out here is insane. These girls are so good. And to do what kind of she's done is incredible.

Being a golf fan, you just sit out there and just slow clap it because seriously, it's so impressive. I'm so proud of her. Like that's it, basically, end of story. I'm just so proud of her.

Now erase everything I said. You heard nothing.

Q. As we change formats tomorrow, will the caddies go to dinner again with their books in hand or is there a different game plan going into tomorrow?

NELLY KORDA: They're free.

JESSICA KORDA: They can do whatever they want.

NELLY KORDA: I think we're just going to stick to the same game plan, just enjoy ourselves, stay present and see how it goes.

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