July 17, 2021
Midland, Michigan, USA
Midland Country Club
THE MODERATOR: Welcome inside the virtual media center here at the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational. I'm here with the champions of this year's event, Mo and Ariya Jutanugarn.
I want to start by going back to the beginning of the day. What was the mindset as you guys headed in?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say last night we were talking about the flight, because we have the flight tonight to Evian. We were talking, should we change, and we not change the flight, and I said, okay, make sure you run fast to the car. We have to drive two hours so we want to make the flight.
You know, somehow just before the round, I just felt like, you know, I still feel not comfortable with my game because like yesterday is not my good day. But before we went to the tee, I walked to my sister and told her like, you know what, Mo, today the goal is we're going to try to make birdie every hole.
I don't care if we're both going to make bogey, but after that, if we make bogey, after that try to make birdie again. That's the goal today I told her. And we agreed to have the same goal.
THE MODERATOR: Moriya, when you heard that from your sister last night, when did you start feeling the confidence that you had out there today? When did you feel you were picking up that momentum again?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: Well, just I felt like out there it's about momentum, of course, and we had a pretty good momentum at the start. It's just more like supporting, just I said over and over again, and of course I had a great support from my sister this week.
No matter what, like she probably hit a few trees out there, but she still make a lot of birdies for me, so I forgive her. We very enjoy it.
THE MODERATOR: We've talked all week how special this moment would feel for the both of you with your mom out there, your dog out there, your friends out there. Ariya, how special is this moment for you?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say it's really special. Every tournament I won she always with me, and when she won I with her. The way we played today, I just told myself, you know what, this is going to be a great memory for us to win together, and I know she really want to win for like two, three years, and I really want to do it for her, also.
You know, and to share the moment together, like to be able to win together.
Q. No tears; when each other wins the other is the blubbering mess but this time there were no tears between you two.
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I have tears when she went in the water on the last hole. I'm like, Mo, come on.
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: She was like crying.
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say maybe because we don't know how -- we don't think like really close and we need to make birdie or keep it going. All we think is just like we really enjoy every moment out there on the course.
We not really thinking about winning the tournament much. We just had a bit of excitement on the last hole, especially when she hit her first shot.
Q. Were you looking at leaderboards throughout? Did you know where you stood?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: I see it a little bit, but I just felt like if I keep doing like what I'm doing, just keep committed, just what we always say, I feel like everything is going to take care of itself, and it did.
Q. May, the last putt on 18, was that a putt you thought you could make, you were trying to make? What was happening there?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: After she hit her first shot, we talked a lot, do you want to hit another one, and we thought you shouldn't hit. And then when I saw my putt, I'm like, you know, just make sure I make a two-putt, otherwise I'm going to make her go back and hit from the tee.
I don't want that to happen, so I told myself, like make sure you make two-putt, and I just make the putt, so yeah.
Q. Are you going to make the flight?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: No.
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: No.
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: We had to change the flight.
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: We're going to change the flight for tomorrow.
Q. Ariya, the putter was working really well for you today; what was going right for you? It seemed like anything that you wanted to roll, it was going in. From your perspective what was going so well with the flat stick today?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say with the putting, it's more like when one of us like some holes, you know, make par already, so we kind of just go aggressive with that. I just feel like have no fear because one of us already make par, so I feel like I can go aggressive with that.
Q. Mo, you said on the 18th green, thank you for my sister for making a bunch of birdies, 16 birdies. You made 10 in your own right. What was going well for you personally? And to that point, too, what is it about best ball that the two of you just seem to really enjoy by shooting two 59s in this tournament?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: I feel like for the best ball, it's like -- it feels like we never give up because you always can have a chance. I hit a bad shot and I know she's going to get it.
Even like if she doesn't hit a good shot and I try to got her back. I think that's how best ball is like make everyone play a lot more aggressive and just very enjoy out there because you know you're going to be a lot more aggressive and someone going to help you.
Q. If you could take me through some of your conversations on the course. I don't need to know the nitty-gritty stuff, but what were the two of you talking about just throughout the round? Was it just kind of focusing on golf the whole time? What was your interaction like throughout today's round?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: Well, most of the time when we're on the golf course, we don't really talk about golf, but today it seems like we talked a lot more about golf. But it's just more like I kind of keep complaining about my putt isn't going to the hole and she keep making putts, and I'm like, oh, she going to beat me because like last time we try to count who make more birdies --
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Still me.
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: This time it's still her. That's okay. Thank you for that, too.
I'll say we talk a lot more about golf. But we try to calm each other down, just say, "we got this."
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Yeah.
Q. Throughout the round we saw a lot of fist bumps and high fives, but then the two of you walked off arm in arm on the 18th green. How special was that moment for the both of you?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say this is the best moment for me because we won together. We helped each other to win the golf tournament. I know it's like we got through so much stuff this week because sometimes I'm worried, I'm nervous to play, and sometimes she have the same feeling.
I know it's a really hard week for us, and the way we play, I'm just so proud of her. We give lots of high fives because a lot of putts, a lot of shots that I felt like so tough, and I know exactly what she feels. Some shots she not feel comfortable but she still have really brave to do it, so I'm just really proud of her.
Q. Just the overall week, just being here in Midland, what could you say about this experience this week?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: Well, it's always a great experience to come back here in Midland. The golf course is very nice, very nice town, and we love coming back here.
Also we had a very good moment together here. It seems like it's one of our favorite places to come.
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: Every time we look at the schedule like starting the year, this one is going to be the one we go in for sure, so we just made the schedule to make this -- to make us be able to play this one.
This event is really special for us.
Q. Mo, May snapped a victory drought earlier this year in Thailand. What does it mean to you to end a drought, as well?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: You know, like of course every victory or every one, it's always like make me happy, also. Especially like this week we were able to do it together. It's just like really special for us, for both of us.
Q. Were you frustrated at the length of time it took to get to No. 2, or were you patient?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: I'll say yesterday she make me very frustrated. Because like yesterday she's like -- she come up and she's like, I don't really feel good, and she's like -- it's so many holes that she leave me somewhere. I'm like, are you sure we should be here or something like that.
But it happened, and today she show up like different person, and that worked.
Q. You both mentioned yesterday that you had things you needed to work on in your game. Was there anything you did after play yesterday that showed up in your play today?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say most thing is attitude. Like yesterday I'm really worried, I'm scared, and I felt like I pulled her back, and she not play well because of me. So today I just came up with a better attitude, like I'm just going to go play golf, have fun, enjoy every moment with my sister.
And like what I said before, goal today, just try to make birdie every hole.
Q. Mo, was there anything you worked on particularly?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: For us like after we finished yesterday it's more like a commitment, like out there -- it doesn't mean we hit a bad shot or something we really have to work on, but it's just like about commitment.
When I had a good commitment, then we should have a good result.
Q. You both have the pink ribbons on. It was mentioned you talked with Pete every night. What were you two talking about and how much was she on your mind this week?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I've been talking to Pete like every night. He have to get through a lot of things. Yeah, baby get better, but we still continue like praying for her.
He give me the best support. He never show me like his sadness. At the same time I just want to come out and play well for him, also, because I don't want him to worry about me.
Yeah, we did a good job. We done it. Just please like continue praying for Gracie.
Q. You mentioned how important it is for you to stay present on the golf course; how challenging was it this week with that in the back of your mind?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: You know, it was tough for me like when my caddie not here with me, but I know the most important thing like what I say, I just want to keep him don't have to worry about me and take care of his daughter. I can take care of everything out here.
Q. Did Pete say anything support-wise going into today?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: You know, we keep telling him like we miss him because like last time when we here, he caddied for me and we had so much fun. We wish he here with us.
He always put a smile on his face to make us happy, and he's always like give us the best support, and he keep telling us, "you got this, go win for Gracie," and we did.
Q. Mo, you both will be taking this momentum into the European swing, and for you, Ariya, into the Olympics. What does this do for your confidence heading into the next few weeks of competition?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: Well, I just said earlier this week it's just perfect for us to be practicing commitment and do what we want to do and just have fun. It's very good like feeling walking out of this week and hopefully just I'll keep that momentum and just keep working on it.
Q. Ariya, what does an event like this do for your confidence as you head through your swing of events?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: I would say most of the time I struggle to have good commitment when I have like so much pressure and thinking so much about the outcome. I've been learning so much, like especially yesterday when I play with her. I feel I have more pressure because I don't want her -- put her in a bad spot or make a lot of bad swings and she's going to end up in trouble.
So that teach me a lot because the only thing I have to focus is like what is under my control. I really have to be present and have good commitment, and after that it will take care of itself.
Q. You have a plethora of wins on your resume, two major championships, as well. Where does this win with your sister kind of stack up on your resume of wins?
ARIYA JUTANUGARN: It's a tough one. I would say going to be -- yeah, the top one because like every tournament we spend -- she always with us, with me, and this time even more special because we win together. So far this one the best one, yep.
Q. Mo, you topped a major championship victory. Does this one beat LA?
MORIYA JUTANUGARN: Yeah, very close. Really, really close, yeah. I just really enjoy every moment this week.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you both, and congratulations.
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