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February 23, 2012

Angela Stanford


ANGELA STANFORD:  Well it was a pretty good start, birdied 10 and hit it pretty close on 11, in the past I think I've struggled with that stretch right there, 10,11, 12.
So the fact that I hit some pretty solid shots off the bat kind of gave me some confidence throughout the round.
MIKE SCANLAN:  Can you just talk about the birdie at the 9th to take the outright lead?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Well, the second shot was not a desirable outcome.
So the good news was, it stayed in the fairway and basically like laying up.  I think it was probably sitting down a little bit in the fairway and we just kind of sit there for a while.  Laid up to a pretty decent number and at that point I thought, well, if I can just give myself a shot at making birdie, we'll see what happens.  Hit a really good putt and really enjoyed watching that last one go in.
MIKE SCANLAN:  Can you just take us through the last two weeks, did you feel this round coming based on your play?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Right before I left home, before Australia, I started hitting it; and there was things that I was thinking about in my swing that in 2008, 2009, they were the same kind of concepts but I was actually doing it again.
I think I got a little bit stronger in the off‑season in my lower body and that's really the key to my swing is how strong my lower body is.  I felt pretty good coming into the year, and Australia, Royal Melbourne, is such a different golf course than I think anybody expected.  It's more of a British Open‑style course.
So that was kind of difficult right off the bat.  And then last week my final three rounds were under par.  I felt pretty good coming into this week.

Q.  Can you paint a picture of the 9th, we didn't realise quite what had happened to you; you need to be more explicit.
ANGELA STANFORD:  I just need to say for all of you guys:  I topped it.

Q.  Your second shot?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Yeah, second shot.  We were like 215 to the front and like 250 to the flag.  It seemed like the ball was kind of running away from me in the fairway, and looked like it was sitting down a little bit and I didn't hit it very well.

Q.  Can you tell us when you last topped a shot like that?
ANGELA STANFORD:  I can honestly tell you, I've never topped a shot and made birdie on the same hole.  That's a first, right?  But no, I cannot remember one.

Q.  But if you do hit a bad shot, what is it?  What is your usual bad shot?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Nobody heard I topped it in there‑‑

Q.  I'll tell them.
ANGELA STANFORD:  My usual bad shot is starting right and ending left.  So you know, that‑‑ the thing is about golf, if you hit a bad shot, like if you top it in the fairway on No.9 on your second shot, you still have an opportunity to make birdie.  You know, if I hit my usual bad shot on that hole, I'm dropping another one.
So it's easy to laugh about it now, because I made birdie.  I probably would still be laughing about it if I made par.  But golf is just‑‑ you have to be able to miss it better than anybody else.  So, in that situation‑‑ that was a good miss.

Q.  After topping the ball, do you laugh?
ANGELA STANFORD:  We laughed, because I mean, we had been standing there so long, and my caddie did say right away, "I wanted you to lay up" because I think he saw that the lie was kind of funny, too.  Just think, try to get it up there as far as you can.  And I had been hitting it pretty decent all day.  So why not.  And it worked out.

Q.  You started birdie; starting early, would you say helps a little bit?
ANGELA STANFORD:  For sure.  Even my last round, I started extremely early.  I think there's something about getting out on the golf course first; and it's very peaceful, and sometimes it's really good.  That was really good for me last week.  I needed to kind of get out there and be alone out there and get some things together.
I do; I enjoy being one of the first ones on the course, and it is a lot cooler around here then.  I felt that on our back nine, about midway on our back nine, it gets pretty hot around 5 and 6 on the golf course; 5, 6, 7 and so it was starting to heat up out there.

Q.  What club did you use?
ANGELA STANFORD:  3‑wood.  Nobody likes a 3‑wood.

Q.  (Inaudible.)‑‑ how would that affect you for coming around?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Well, I think today more than a couple of years ago helped just with confidence.  You know, when you're playing with the best players in the world, you just have got to stay out in front of them.
So any chances you get to have a good day and get out in front of this field, you have to jump on it.  So if anything, last week, I had a really bad first round.  Well, you're playing catch up all week.
So at least now I can continue with my game plan and, you know, hopefully continue like this.  But it just really hard when you're playing against the best when you dig a hole and to come back.  Maybe your first round, you get comfortable on this course.

Q.  Using different ‑‑ inaudible ‑‑ this time around?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Well, it would be easy for me to sit here and say, I'm going to be patient.  I'm not patient person.  So, you know, that‑‑ but sometimes you have to kind of fight some of these demons to grow up.
So, you know, as much as I think sitting here being 34 and think that I'm pretty mature, I'm not.  I'm still extremely impatient out there.
You know, if anything, I'm going to use this week to just kind of let things come to me instead of getting impatient and forcing things, which usually is the case.  I usually tend to press.  I think everybody kind of does that.
So you just have to know when to take your chances and when to save par, and I haven't fully learned that lesson yet.  I'm still working on it.

Q.  You mentioned that‑‑ does it help, that the crowds‑‑ do you like that or do you prefer having more attention on yourself?
ANGELA STANFORD:  I think in both cases you take positives from both.  I think when you have a bunch of people following you, there is an adrenaline rush from that and you do stay more focussed with more people around.
People at home always ask me, like, how do you hit those shots with all of those people standing around you?  Well, it kind of helps you.  Kind of forms a tunnel and you kind of‑‑ you know that people are making noise, so you just focus in a little bit more and you don't let little distractions bother you because you know they are out there.
So I think both sides can work for you.  When there are a lot of people around, it helps with my focus.

Q.  Do you have a coach you speak to every day?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Yes.  Like a swing coach?

Q.  Yes.
ANGELA STANFORD:  His name is Mike Wright.  We don't speak every day over here but we've had an occasional e‑mail, and he'll send a text or an e‑mail and I'll text or e‑mail him.

Q.  So did you text him when you mentioned the topped shot?
ANGELA STANFORD:  Probably.  Actually, he will probably read the transcript and he will probably text me before I text him (chuckling).
He likes for me to keep it fun.  And you know, he's the type of guy that he'll probably tell me to try to work on that shot on the range anyway.  So he's just really great about, laugh it off.

Q.  You said you're impatient, but you're really placid, aren't you?  You don't throw clubs.
ANGELA STANFORD:  I threw one on the range yesterday.  Caddie didn't like that.  I have learned that it doesn't help.  You know, it not going to help when you throw a club on the golf course‑‑ it might today.
You know, I have a bit of a temper.  And I'll slam a club occasionally, but it doesn't get you very far.  I've learned that I'm wasting energy, and there have been moments where I've gotten so mad that you do kind of need to release that.
But I'm just learning that it's a waste, a waste of energy.

Q.  Distance to the pin?
ANGELA STANFORD:  I'm going to give you all the details now.  215 to the front‑‑ well, 260 to the pin.  So after I topped it, we had 191 to the front and 131 to the pin.  And I made a birdie‑‑ sorry, 191 to the front.  131 to the pin.
MIKE SCANLAN:  Other way around‑‑
ANGELA STANFORD:  Third shot I had 91 to the front and then 191 to the pin on the third shot.  I'm just glad I made a birdie so I can laugh about it.

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