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April 26, 2006

Paula Creamer


PAM WARNER: Paula, thanks for joining us today. We're here at the Ginn Open in Orlando, your home state. Do you just want to talk about playing here?

PAULA CREAMER: Yeah, I'm really looking forward to it. It's a new event and a good golf course. It's hot out there and it's going to be difficult the next four days. I guess the conditions because it is so hot, you have to drink a lot of water. Overall the golf course is in great shape and it should be a good test of golf when it gets windy.

Q. Now that there's a new group of young American players like you, like Morgan, Michelle Wie is not on the Tour, but kind of waiting until the wings, what do you think that means for the LPGA in terms of raising its popularity?

PAULA CREAMER: Well, it helps a lot, it's benefitting us all. It's new excitement, it's fresh and it's new. I think that it's just exciting that there's just so many new people coming out on Tour and especially the Americans, it's nice for people to watch.

Q. In your mind, where are you at this year, where is your game at and do you see yourself searching for some things or struggling?

PAULA CREAMER: It seems like I've had three good days, and every tournament I've always had one bad round or something didn't work properly. I'm just trying to have four good rounds of golf.

I've been making some mistakes (ph) things out on the golf course, and that's just myself getting in the way of letting it do its thing. I get anxious out there and I want to win and I miss that feeling of winning and I think that that has a little to do with it. I think I practice too hard out on the golf course and I think I just basically need to let up out there.

Q. Is there any one part of the game?

PAULA CREAMER: I think it's just a little bit of everything. I have a pretty big six weeks in a row now. I go to Japan next week, so it's been a lot of golf. I'm just trying to figure out, you know, off time, what do I do, things like that. I think that I just need to just say it's okay, you have a lot of tournaments to come out and eventually and just give myself chances on Sunday.

Q. Compared to last year, is this in some ways more difficult, are you finding it?

PAULA CREAMER: Oh, I think it's much more different. The pressure was more for myself last year. It's a little different now. You know, people have their expectations of what they expect me to do, and I think that, you know, I have to just forget about that and do what I want to do. It's a lot more busy, there's a lot more things that I have to do and be aware of. But it's all fine because it means I'm doing well and there's a reason why it all happens.

Q. You've had a lot of media attention since you were pretty young, could you imagine yourself, though, being in Dakoda Dowd's shoes and dealing with media attention for the reason that she's getting it?

PAULA CREAMER: I don't know how she does it. That's pretty remarkable what she does. I got to play with her yesterday and she's such a good kid. She's fearless on the golf course, she just steps up and hits it and hits it again. I couldn't even imagine what that whole family is going through.

Q. How did golf get into your life, and how do mom and dad feel about your not going to college?

PAULA CREAMER: The first question, how did golf get into my life, I started out at 10. I lived on a golf course in California and I just, I loved the game, I loved the pressure of it. My dad used to play.

My parents support whatever I do. I was going to go to college but now I have the opportunity to come out on Tour and they support me 100% in whatever I do.

Q. Your parents are golfers?

PAULA CREAMER: My dad is, not my mom. Like I said, I lived on the golf course. I did that for a really long time and did that with my friends when I first started out with golf.

Q. (Inaudible) Would you rather take the money rather than go to school?

PAULA CREAMER: Well, it's not about the money. I don't play golf for the money. I play it because I love it and I enjoy it. It's just another thing that benefits what I do. But it's another I think that I do what I do and I like what I do and I feel that I belong out here.

Q. You still haven't answered my question at all. You're okay about turning pro

PAULA CREAMER: Well, I did it, so yeah.

Q. Without going to college now, there are no second thoughts about it in your mind; correct?

PAULA CREAMER: About not going to school?

Q. Yeah

PAULA CREAMER: No, there wasn't any.

Q. or for someone like Michelle Wie where she's getting all this money from Nike and her parents are very concerned about her not finishing her education, so she has to finish her education, and more and more of that is going to happen inaudible?

PAULA CREAMER: Okay. I have great sponsors and the people around me do what they do the best, and I'm lucky that the team around me wants to support me in whatever I do.

Q. This will be a little bit easier. (Laughter). I know you didn't play in your Pro Am today, any reasons why, and are you feeling okay?

PAULA CREAMER: I'm feeling a lot better. I think I'm just dehydrated. It's difficult coming out this morning and I wasn't feeling very good. I was a little under the weather but I'm feeling a lot better now. I do feel much better.

Q. Next week you go to Japan, you said, and you're two for two, won twice last year, your general impressions about Japan as a country and also the Tour; and lastly, your favorite Japanese food.

PAULA CREAMER: I love Tokyo. Tokyo is one of my favorite places besides New York City. When I go to Japan, I have so much fun. The people there, they take care of me so well. I feel very welcomed when I come there. It's very exciting. The golf is good. You know, when I come there, I want to win, but it's just as hard to win over there as it is here.

Q. And is that only in Japan inaudible?

PAULA CREAMER: Only in Japan. And I like sushi. (Laughter).

Q. You have a lot of demands on your time off the golf course with the photo shoot and all of these interviews every week, do you ever have to make sure that it doesn't take away from your game and doesn't in any way adversely affect your game; do you have to be conscious of that?

PAULA CREAMER: A little bit. I think everything revolves around how you play. If you don't play good and you don't post a score, then those things are not going to be happening. So lately I haven't been playing that great but I don't think it's because of what I do off the course. I know it's very important think practice and get my time in with my golf. If that becomes a problem with stuff off the course then we'll take care of that.

I don't mind doing things because it takes my mind off golf and it's a fun thing to do. Like I said earlier, if those don't happen, that means that my golf isn't there and if nobody wants to take pictures then I'm not succeeding.

Q. Is your mind set different from last year in terms of goals or what you want to achieve now, considering what you did last year?

PAULA CREAMER: Like have my goals changed?

Q. Yeah, the expectations that you put on yourself even greater?

PAULA CREAMER: Yeah, definitely. I felt what it feels like to win, I've been in that situation of winning. I've been in contention, so coming into this year, I put a lot of pressure on myself. I expect myself to do well. If I did it last year no reason why I can't do it again this year. I worked as hard in the off season as the year before, if not harder. At the same time I can't force things and I have to just let it happen. I think that, you know, once I get on a roll, I think it's going to be for a long stretch.

Q. On the main road in here, there are these banners of great players like Beth Daniel, Juli Inkster, Annika, you're also on one of those banners, have you seen those, and what was your reaction when you see something like that? It seems clear that you are becoming quite a draw on the Tour now.

PAULA CREAMER: I think it's neat when you come down and you see everybody come down that road and you see the pictures and it's pretty exciting. I like the outfit they have me in there, that was nice, my pink socks, that was cool. It's great to be with those players at that caliber of level.

Q. What's the buzz been heading into this tournament, big money tournament, full field tournament, certainly is a big step up?

PAULA CREAMER: Yeah, I think everybody is so excited to be here. You know, I think it's a great event and a good opportunity for us to do well. You know, the purse is big and you want to play well. I think everybody wants to do well and go out and play their hardest. I know I do and I would love to win this event, it's very exciting. The golf course, they have a good golf course and it's in good condition and it makes everything so much better.

Q. Is there a draw because it's in Orlando where the Tour has not been in five years?

PAULA CREAMER: Yes, would I assume so. I haven't played at an event when it was here in Florida, but it's an event that definitely brings excitement again for the Tour.

Q. After your experience in the Solheim Cup last year, how eager are you to get back to that kind of a competition?

PAULA CREAMER: Oh, I mean, I wish Solheim Cup was every year but I don't know if I could handle that excitement. That week is amazing. You get so much energy and then it's like it's so hyper for so long and then the end of those three days, it's done and it just ends and the next week you're playing in an event. I love team events, I love playing for the United States, and that team that we had, it just made it even more special.

Q. You are scheduled to play with Annika the first two days, I've been doing my research, the first two rounds that you play with Annika, you have a very good record head to head. Anything that you are watching her play or are you just kind of playing your game?

PAULA CREAMER: Well, I think when I get paired with Annika, I definitely focus a lot harder. I don't know what it is. It's not like I don't focus hard when I'm without her, but it's Annika and you want to play well when you're with her. More people are watching, so it's just, I don't know, I like that. I like that, being with her, playing and Cristie Kerr has been playing great the last couple of weeks, so I think I have a great pairing. I'm very excited about it and hopefully it will be good on the weekend, as well.

Q. What would you advise for young golfers who are coming up?

PAULA CREAMER: Just have fun with golf. I think it's a sport that you can play forever and not to get too hard on yourself when things don't happen soon. You're not going to live a normal life when you play golf. You know, there's so much that you do, your time, there's so much time involved, you won't live a normal teenage life. Once you do it, it feels like it is. Once you get on the 18th green of the tournament and you have a trophy in your hands, I think that's what we have to work hard for, you have to be very driven.

Q. A good sport for pretty and young girls?

PAULA CREAMER: Sure, why not? I think any sport is good if you're pretty and young. (Laughter).

PAM WARNER: Thank you, Paula.

End of FastScripts.

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