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November 23, 2007
HONG KONG, CHINA
JOE CHEMYCZ: We welcome the team from the United States, Heath Slocum and Boo Weekley, into the interview room after a 3-under par 69 today.
Again, guys, maybe if we just start with some general comments and then we'll open it up for questions. Heath, why don't you go first.
HEATH SLOCUM: I think we played pretty solid today. Obviously we made a couple mistakes, made a couple bogeys.
But other than that, I think we played pretty solid. This is a hard format to play, anyway, to keep a rhythm, and I think we did a good job today. We would have loved to have gone out and shot something really nice, but at the same time, we started the day ahead and we finished the day ahead. So looking forward for the weekend.
BOO WEEKLEY: I thought we played solid today for under the conditions. We wasn't hitting it our best and sure wasn't putting it our best.
But other than that, I mean, we kept did in front of us. We got it around the golf course at 3-under which was pretty impressive, I thought, with the way some of the shots were going and the way we was leaving each other in some places around the greens.
But overall, it was perfect. Maybe we can excel tomorrow and play a little better than we did today and carry it on into the Sunday round ahead.
Q. Yesterday one of us asked Monty, and we didn't actually get one of his better replies, if he felt there was anything to do with the course that really smacked of China. When you're playing around there, is there anything that tells you you're in China?
BOO WEEKLEY: From where I live at, all these hills might. I mean, it's really -- this is a great golf course, great venue that they have here.
It feels like you're at home like in the mountains, I reckon, where I live at, but I don't live that far up in the north.
Anything for you?
HEATH SLOCUM: I mean, there's not a lot of parts of the U.S. that look exactly like this. So you maybe feel like you're in a different country, for me especially. But maybe around 16, you see the big statute standing up, you kind of know that you're somewhere else. It's definitely different than any place than we have in the U.S., so you definitely know you're somewhere else.
Q. Are the greens different from those you are used to at home? Some people think they are difficult to read.
HEATH SLOCUM: They are actually fairly similar to where Boo and I grew up. We grew up on grainy bermuda, and so we grew up on greens very similar that were very difficult to read, also.
So, I mean, they are difficult to read I think for everyone. It's just hard when you play with that much grain. Yeah, they are very similar to what we play.
Q. Did you receive anything overnight from home, a text or e-mails or anything, that would suggest that the town is following your progress?
BOO WEEKLEY: No. Only thing I got was they said the turkey was good. (Laughter).
Q. And what did you have to eat for dinner last night (laughter)?
BOO WEEKLEY: Ribeye and I think some French fries.
Q. No Chinese?
BOO WEEKLEY: No, not this time.
Q. Can you tell us what you thought was the best shot Heath hit today, and vice versa?
BOO WEEKLEY: (Scratching head) I'd have to say No. 1 because that kind of got us started, you know, right out of the gate. He hit a good shot right in there, which he hit a bunch of good shots. But I had to say one kind of jump-started us. When you birdie the first hole in this format, it kind of puts you in the kind of a mood that you can say, okay, maybe we can birdie these holes out here, you know, just kind of gives us a better advantage I think.
Q. Which particular shot on the first?
BOO WEEKLEY: It was his iron shot into the green to, I'd say, about ten feet.
HEATH SLOCUM: It's really a tie. He hit a lot of good shots today, but he hit two really good ones. On 13, he hit a 4-iron to five feet, and on 17, I think he hit 7-iron to about five feet. Neither one did I capitalise on, but they were both extremely difficult shots that he hit; well struck.
Q. Why is foursomes such a hard format, and does it help being good friends?
HEATH SLOCUM: It does help being good friends. I mean, you have to trust your partner a lot. But it's just so difficult. It's out of the normal rhythm. It's out of the normal thing you do. You're hitting it, you know, every other shot and you might not putt for nine holes or four or five holes, and then all of a sudden you're called upon to make a tricky 5-footer downhill, downgrain.
It's just a difficult format. You both have to -- I think with us being friends, we both know we're trying our hardest and you're not going to get upset with each other. Of one of us hits a bad shot, we just say, "I'll pick you up," because you know you're going to hit one sooner or later and he'll say the same.
It's a fun format. I think we enjoy playing it and we get to do it again on Sunday, so it ought to be fun.
Q. Do you find that the Chinese crowds appreciate the same things as American crowds, or do they like different things? What do you notice about them?
BOO WEEKLEY: I mean, I don't know if the Chinese crowd understands a lot of the movement. There's a lot of movement out there, a lot of talking. Meanwhile, we're playing and you can hear them all coming down the fairways and there are golf carts coming around everywhere.
HEATH SLOCUM: They still appreciate the shots.
BOO WEEKLEY: They appreciate the shots. I ain't saying that. I'm just saying there's a lot of movement out there. Some of it's distracting and some of it ain't.
But I know they appreciate it. They clap when you hit good shots and they always say, "hey" and "hi" and waving at you when you hit a good shot. That's a plus.
Q. And do you have policemen saluting you on tees in America or not?
BOO WEEKLEY: I don't want to answer that one. (Laughter) No, they don't.
Q. Is it good for you, do you think, learning to cope with that, those sort of distractions? Is it good for your game?
BOO WEEKLEY: To what now?
Q. To cope with those sort of distractions that you wouldn't have when you're playing in America.
BOO WEEKLEY: Growing up, we distracted each other, playing with a bunch of friends. But it's one thing, your mind-set, you ain't focusing as hard as you are out here, because it's a grind. And you get out here, you don't want to hear a cell phone go off, which is the same thing in the States, the people do the same thing. But it -- (sighing) -- it's just different.
Q. You said -- I guess you missed two 5-foot putts, one on 3 and one on 17, does that encapsulate the putting day you had?
HEATH SLOCUM: I don't know if we really missed too many -- those were two of the shortest by far.
BOO WEEKLEY: I missed on the first, 3-putt.
HEATH SLOCUM: Oh, we did 3-putt one time. But all three putts had considerable break to them, cross-grain. So I might have pulled the one on 13 a fraction, and it just got eaten up with the grain.
And on 17, I hit a good putt, just misread it just a fraction, that's all it takes hitting it a little downhill, sidehill. Other than those, we just didn't really make anything today like we did yesterday.
Q. You've been to a couple tournaments outside of the U.S. this year already, this is your third event outside the U.S., and now the season is over on the U.S. Tour. Would you like to come out more, especially after this experience in China, maybe this part of the world? Would you like to come out this way and play more events this year or maybe in the future?
BOO WEEKLEY: Yes, I like to travel. It's just a long ways from home. But you know, I'd like to come over and play different golf courses. I'd like to see a little more of what the actual culture of how they built the courses -- I know they all ain't like this out here. It would be interesting to go see something more of a links style or something that they had them over here.
Q. What about outside the golf course, would you like to see more?
BOO WEEKLEY: Oh, yeah. I'd like to go see where like The Great Wall, just look and see what all this place has to offer. You know, just kind of like you live in the south where we live at, you know, it's a bunch of rednecks. And then you go north, you got the Yankees. So it's different. I know it's different over here, too.
Q. Did you see Tim Finchem when he was here earlier in the week, or indeed, have you seen Ty Votaw, who is still here, or going back tonight?
HEATH SLOCUM: Were you asking if we've seen them? Yes.
Q. And did they say anything other than just hi?
HEATH SLOCUM: They said, "Good luck, play well, you're representing your country nicely."
Q. They haven't been in touch since your excellent first round?
HEATH SLOCUM: Saw Ty this morning at breakfast and he just said, "Nice playing, go get 'em today."
Q. Playing with England tomorrow, not sure if you've seen how they have dressed the last few days, but they have been colour-coded and match each other. Have you and Heath thought of that or is that something you would ever do?
BOO WEEKLEY: We have matching belts.
No, we'll have -- I think we both like wearing our own things. We've got the belts, they match.
Q. What are they, what colour?
BOO WEEKLEY: I don't know if you can see it over my belly. (Standing, showing belt).
Q. Where did you get them from?
BOO WEEKLEY: You might want to --
HEATH SLOCUM: They had them made for us by a belt company in Atlanta, House of Fleming. They made the belt for us, and just inscribed with both our names. So just red, white and blue with a USA belt buckle, really nice.
Q. Whose idea was it?
HEATH SLOCUM: It was one of our friends. He's a rep for Aldila and this belt company, like I said, in Atlanta. He just thought it would be a really nice gift for us to bring over. He had them made for each of us.
Q. Yesterday you said you "brother-in-lawed it." Can you explain what that means? I didn't really quite understand.
BOO WEEKLEY: We just like, you know, like Heath said earlier, I'd be out of the hole or something and he'd pick me up. Like we both -- we're scrambling. One of us would be hitting like left of the hole or in a bunker and one of us is on the green. He had me or I had him one way or the other.
Q. So like your brother-in-law would look after you?
BOO WEEKLEY: We just took after it.
HEATH SLOCUM: Ham-and-egg.
Q. Is that a southern expression?
HEATH SLOCUM: I don't know if it's a southern expression. I've heard it throughout the United States. I don't know if it's -- I don't know. Good question.
JOE CHEMYCZ: I think "ham-and-egg" is probably a little more common in that sort of format.
Gentlemen, thank you.
End of FastScripts