Tiger’s Quicken Loans National press conference: Saturday
Q: Tiger, obviously not what you wanted today. Is this sort of just what — what you were talking about, it’s going to happen?
TIGER: Yeah. You know, unfortunately I warmed up that way. I was hitting the ball left on the range warming up. Couldn’t quite get comfortable. And flipped it on 1 with the left rough off the tee. Made sure I didn’t flip it on two. Hit a drive right. Basically it was a fight all day. It felt like that hook was coming in and fought through it the best I could.
Q: How surprised are you given (inaudible)
TIGER: Am I surprised? Yeah, a little bit. I hit it like this when I was warming up. Sometimes it’s one of those things you hit awful on the range and go stripe it on a golf course. That wasn’t the case here. I warmed up, it was in indicative of how I played today.
Q: Was it times you thought like a shot you hit would bring it altogether?
TIGER: I was waiting for the one moment, the one shot. I couldn’t find it. Somehow — I mean I grinded my butt off to be even par through seveb, just hang in there the best I possibly could and I finally hit it on eight right in the middle of the fairway and flipped a nice high cut 5-wood in there and hit a draw. I was dead back there compounding the problem.
Q: You’ve spoken a lot about your patience and experience throughout this process. How much do you lean on that like a day like today?
TIGER: I was very patient. I fought hard today. I made some sweet up and downs, hit some really good shots. Thank God my short game is back. Now I just need to get the ball striking in there a little it better and consistent. It’s the best I felt with the putter and I rolled it so pure but I never could get the ball on the green fast enough.
Q: Trying to hit a cut into a left pin?
TIGER: Yeah, I was. Just pulled it again. More of a flip than a pull.
Q: How much at all is just being kind of being right there for the first time in awhile, more anxiety or anything like that being close to the lead?
TIGER: No. I felt very comfortable out there. I’ve been there so many times, it’s really — I was only at the halfway point. Still a lot of golf to be played. I saw a lot of the scores out there when we went out. I saw most of the guys were at 3-under par or better through nine holes and felt like the golf course was definitely getable and Charles played the round I needed to play today. He hit the ball well enough and hit it in there close and even though he hit a couple bad shots he did a lot of things right and gave himself a great chance to win the tournament tomorrow.
Q: Tiger, you’re playing, notwithstanding basically Charles, again playing —
TIGER: He was been battling with some injuries. It is what it is. You got to keep pushing through it and he has. I mean he’s really hitting the golf ball well. It finally looks like he’s found a routine with his putting stroke that gets comfortable and gets up and goes. His stroke looks great. He’s done a lot of good work. Hope he plays well tomorrow.
Q: If the weather stays the way it is today with a little wind, did do you think the course is gettable tomorrow?
TIGER: No doubts. No doubt. Saw a lot of dots out there for tomorrow. They’re in pretty easy spots. Shoot one of those 61s out there tomorrow and not have it and touch 61 through like 14 holes.
Q: How much does it eat at your focus when you know it’s out there and you just keep kind of missing it?
TIGER: Yeah. You know, I’ve been through rounds like this before, you know. I figure if I could hang in there, and I did, I hung in there and was even par through seven. At eight I could turn it around, make a birdie here and let’s get things going, then possibly sneak up to double digits here quickly after that and get things rolling. I went the exact opposite way. Made bogey at eight and a double at 11.