February 22, 2000
GORDON SIMPSON: Sergio, thanks for coming in, in the middle of the night, at least it feels like it. This is your first time at the World Golf Championships - Andersen Consulting Match Play Championship. Does this type of golf excite you, the top 64 in the world?
SERGIO GARCIA: I've always liked playing match play. And I'm looking forward to play here. I think this is my first event -- second as match play. But hopefully we'll play well. Let's see if we can win or do something good.
GORDON SIMPSON: How was your game coming into this week?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, it's a little better. I started, I would say poorly, but got a little better and had an okay week in Australia. I had an okay week. And the game is getting a little better, and hopefully we can play well here, and let's see if we can do something good.
GORDON SIMPSON: Let's take questions now.
Q. When exactly did you get in? You haven't seen the scores, correct?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yes, I played on Saturday. I came here and I had a week off, and I stayed like three days in Australia, and then I flew back on Thursday morning, I arrived here on Thursday. And I practiced on Saturday. It was a nice, beautiful day like today. And after that I just played seven holes yesterday.
Q. What were your impressions of the course?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, the course is pretty good. I like better the back nine, it's a little tougher. But the greens, when they get fast, they can be really difficult. And I like -- I think because of the rains it's going to be a little soft. But if it gets firm, it will be pretty tough. And the rough is really okay.
Q. Have you discovered you suffered badly from jet lag?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yes. I'm here five days, so I feel pretty good.
Q. Sergio, how are you getting on with Fannie, can we have an update?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, we're getting better, and looks like we're doing less mistakes. And we started so-so, but we're starting to know each other. It was a little tough at the beginning, because, well, you know, you've been with the same guy for ten years. So it's always tough to change. But it's changing a little, and we're starting to make a nice little group, and a pretty good team.
Q. What does she -- what has she had to change for you?
SERGIO GARCIA: A lot of things. A lot of things, because, Nick Faldo, he's a different player than me, and she had to change a lot of things.
Q. Can you explain a bit?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I would say Nick Faldo is more mechanical than me, and I'm a longer hitter, I don't know, things like that. Little things that sometimes they're little, but they're tough to realize.
Q. Does she have to spend as long an the practice range?
SERGIO GARCIA: No, I don't think so. We spend more time on the golf course.
Q. Do you like your caddy to talk to you a lot or do you prefer them to be quiet?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I don't really like too much thinking. I like to have it clear and just go ahead and hit it. Sometimes I think that if you think too much, you're thinking too many things, you're not thinking about hitting the shot. And for me, for my way of play, I don't know, I want to know where the wind is coming from, and say can I hit a little cut or whatever, and that's it. I don't want to think about too many things.
Q. Clearer, sharp decisions?
SERGIO GARCIA: Just have it clear and hit it.
Q. What do you know about Loren Roberts?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I've never played with him. But I know he's a great player. And it can be one of those games where you think, well, I don't know, he's maybe not that good, but then you realize that you're wrong. So I'm not going to be thinking like that. I know all the players here are really good players, and you have to believe in their possibilities all around. They're all good players, and you can't go out thinking, well, it's going to be easy, because then you start making a couple of putts, some birdies, and after six holes you realize you're 3-down, and you don't know what to do.
Q. Even though he's one of the shortest hitters on Tour out here, can that be an advantage for him in match play, simply because he also doesn't make a lot of mistakes? He's going to be short, he's going to be hitting it to every green first, he's a good putter. Can he still be a threat?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yes, he can. I heard he can get up-and-down from almost everywhere, and that's a good thing in match play, because there's something when you see your opponent on the green and you're thinking you're probably 15 feet from the hole, and you're thinking maybe I'm going to win this hole, and he goes up-and-down, and you miss it and you go, well -- it feels like you lost the hole instead of tying it. But I think I have to take care of him, and I have to be really concentrated, and just -- I think it's going to be tough. Every single match I think is going to be tough. So you have to realize that and play your best.
Q. Have you looked at your bracket to see who might be in the second round or the third round or who's in your section?
SERGIO GARCIA: I just saw, if I win and Carlos wins, we'll play the third round.
Q. Do you have your new nonslip shoes?
SERGIO GARCIA: What?
Q. Do you have your new nonslip shoes?
SERGIO GARCIA: A long time ago.
Q. You seem to draw on the adrenaline at the Ryder Cup. Can you have the same sort of passion in an event like this?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I don't think at the beginning you're going to see that much, because Ryder Cup is different. But I think you're going to see some. Not only from me, I think from every player. So I think it's going to be a great tournament, and I hope that the people enjoy it.
Q. What's your schedule after that event?
SERGIO GARCIA: Two weeks off, Bay Hill, TPC, Masters -- I don't know, week off, I think, Spanish Open, Byron Nelson -- I don't know.
Q. What about the Irish Open, will you be defending that?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yes, of course.
Q. Has there ever been any road maps for young players in any sport on how to handle celebrity and success, and how to manage your career. I'm wondering if you look at the way Tiger has sort of struck in his career lately and used it as any kind of model for you?
SERGIO GARCIA: He helped me a lot, and I've said this a lot of times, he's been very good with me and of course I'll probably end up doing exactly the same things, but of course I've seen some of the things he's done, and I've talked to him. I'm trying to do the best for me. And trying to do it the right way. Sometimes you don't, but you always try your best.
Q. Is there anything specific that he really helped you with?
SERGIO GARCIA: Everything. I wouldn't say anything specific.
GORDON SIMPSON: Good luck this week, thanks for coming in.
End of FastScripts .