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June 29, 2008

Bubba Watson


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: You finished tied for second this week, four rounds in the 60s and you had a top ten last week at the Travelers Championship, so obviously you're in a good place right now, and you almost won today. Maybe some opening comments about a good round for you, a 68.
BUBBA WATSON: It was great to get all The Ryder Cup points for the second place.
It was hard. You know, the first couple of holes, I played well. Birdied the first hole and then got nerves out but 3-putted two holes, both par 3s on the front I 3-putted. Missed a 5-footer on 9.
So I doubled my bogey count for the week at three coming into today and had three today. And then made the turn and saw I was four back with nine holes to go and figured, shot 31 in my life before, shot 30 already this week on that same side. So if we can do that, we're right there and have a chance.
Had four birdies and just missed the one on 18.

Q. Can you take us through 18?
BUBBA WATSON: The tee shot, I was feeling good, and I knew that birdie, that ties, and so I had a chance. That's what everybody asks for, asks for a chance. I got over the ball, I was committed to what I was doing and aimed at my target and tried to cut it off at the bunker over there. Just got away from me and cutaway from me too much. Wasn't nerves; just wasn't my time to win, and didn't hit the fairway.
Got down there and luckily had a shot. It was not a tough shot, no grass around the ball or nothing. Really simple, just a low cut and just let it run up the fairway. Took a while to get all of the fans out of the way. I hit a shot and as soon as I hit it, I knew it missed all the trees; and so I knew it was exactly what I wanted to do, and then I lost it.
I saw the crowd and I just tried to run to the fairway, and when I got out there, I saw the ball and was like 12 feet, 11 feet from the hole, and I had no idea -- I forgot Chopra still had not hit it yet.
And then I missed -- if anybody heard. We thought it was going to break. You hit it at that speed, to let it die in there, it was hanging up and halfway to the hole we knew it wasn't going to -- unless it did some miracle, kick-in.

Q. You said this is your first time at the Buick Open. Do you plan to come back, and what memories will you bring from this?
BUBBA WATSON: I have great memories. You know, the media wants you to win every week. For me, for a country boy, for growing up with no money, second place, I think $440,000, I'll be able to buy gas for a week or two, or tied to second, so drops down.

Q. Before Woody had the two bogeys, did you think you were going to need eagle on 16 to have a chance to get into a playoff?
BUBBA WATSON: Yeah, we didn't get to see Woody's -- we heard he 3-putted 17. I have no idea what he did. But we heard a roar, like he hit the green. So, you know, it was one of those where we knew we had to eagle.
I hit a shot under pressure that I pulled off and then left the putt six inches short dead in the heart. So I thought I had it, and then walking, we heard some guys, hate to say it, they were cheering that Woody 3-putted. And so then we knew we had a chance if we just birdied and got a little excited and flew over the green and luckily got that up-and-down.
We thought eagle for sure and was probably going to have to birdie another hole, definitely. You always expect the person to play well. You never expect them to come back to you.

Q. On 18, on that punch shot under the trees, did you say it was a 7-iron?
BUBBA WATSON: It was a 6-iron. 140 to the hole, 120 to the front.

Q. How do you calm yourself down?
BUBBA WATSON: Well, the more that they were fighting with them to get out of the way, it makes it a little bit easier.
You know, from the fairway, it was a -- everybody thinks you're going to hit it close and everybody expects you to hit it close because it's a wide-open shot. From there if I hit a tree or doesn't turn out the way I wanted it to, doesn't look as bad, so wasn't that nerve-wracking.
When I hit that great shot, they are cheering; like, no way he hit that shot. There wasn't nerves. It was just, I had a chance, and if I hit it dead-straight into that bunker, we had a chance to hole the bunker shot. Just happened to cut perfectly and role up there perfectly.

Q. When you lose by one shot, maybe there's a tendency to look back over the course of the tournament and see shots that maybe you let get away; when you look at the par 5s yesterday, do you think you let something get away there, not birdieing those two?
BUBBA WATSON: No. Because I made a par putt this week from 30 feet and made a par putt yesterday on 9 from 15 feet. Took a penalty drop when I was stymied behind a tree and hit it down there and made par. Hit it out of the trees and made par. Made a 12-footer on 17 for par.
So, no, it all equals out. If you're a negative person, you'll look back, and say I lost the tournament on this. But if early in the week somebody told me, a tight golf course like this I was going to finish second or have a putt to tie to get into the playoff, I'd say, let's go ahead and have that putt and have this week over with. But I had a chance, and two good weeks in a row.
And I'm looking forward to filling Tiger's shoes the rest of the year -- or Kenny; Kenny looks like he's doing pretty good. (Laughing).

Q. When you hit the putt, your body language didn't seem like you thought you had made it. When did you realize it wasn't going in?
BUBBA WATSON: When it missed. My eyes were blurry. I was nervous.

Q. You thought it was going in?
BUBBA WATSON: I was hoping it was going in. I don't know if I thought it was going in but I was wishing, whatever you want to call it. Body language, I was nervous. I was probably twitching a little bit, too. It's just one of those that just hung up halfway to the hole and I knew wasn't going in. We played it high, and missed, one of those amateur shots.
JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Bubba Watson, thank you for your time.

End of FastScripts

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