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THE EUROPEAN OPEN

July 4, 2008

Sergio Garcia

ASH, KENT, ENGLAND

SCOTT CROCKETT: Thanks, as always, for coming in to join us. A fantastic round today. You must be absolutely delighted with that and where you are in the tournament at the halfway stage.
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I'm definitely happy I got myself back into it. I'm not happy with the way I played 4,5 and 6. I a really good round going. And my second shot on 4 from the middle of the fairway, the 9-iron, kind of really stopped my momentum and then I didn't birdie the next. I 3-putted from long range and then I didn't birdie the next one from the middle of the fairway again.
So fortunate for me, I had a great finish, so that made up a little bit. But the good thing is like I said before, I got myself back in the tournament.
SCOTT CROCKETT: Give us the details on the finish.
SERGIO GARCIA: 8, I hit a good drive and then I 211 yards, hit 6-iron to about probably eight or nine feet.
9, 5-wood off the tee, 8-iron from 177 to about probably 18 feet.

Q. The shot at fourth, what happened?
SERGIO GARCIA: I hit a bad one. I finished in the right bunker, plugged, and I actually made a good bogey. Even though it was a good bogey, it still stopped my momentum.
I birdied 18 which is a tough hole and I almost birdied 17 and I birdied 2 and 3 hitting good shots in. You know, it just was a hard step on the brake.

Q. Do you go into a Major worrying about your technique or do you just go and play?
SERGIO GARCIA: No, obviously, the best thing to do is to just play because that's the way you're going to play the best. The less you think, the better things go.
Of course, I mean, I'm trying to make sure that I get myself comfortable this week and I managed to hit some of the shots that I see.
Obviously some of the shots I've been hitting this week, I'm going to be using at The Open, so you know, I think it's a great test. The course unfortunately doesn't look like this, the weather is going to be great on the weekend, but these couple of days have played similar to what an Open Championship would be.

Q. I suppose you don't want to go to a Major trying to find something?
SERGIO GARCIA: You never want to do that, but obviously you're always trying to get better. But like you said, you don't want to be trying to find your swing going into a major.

Q. The way you are talking, what do you think you could have shot out there?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I mean, if I would have birdied 4, 5, 6 and 7, I would have shot 59.

Q. 58.
SERGIO GARCIA: No, 59, five shots better. (Laughter) I mean, you can't just go, maybe I would have not finished eagle birdie; I would have finished eagle, eagle.
No, but obviously, you know, I had a great round going. I had a lot of momentum on my side. I was hitting the ball well. I was rolling the ball nicely. You know, I had a good birdie opportunity on 4. Obviously 5 is a birdie hole. If you hit a decent drive which I've been doing.
6 and 7, if you hit a decent shot, you might make a birdie there. But you never know, maybe I would have finished birdie par, because 9 is not that easy a hole to birdie today with the pin tucked in on the left.
You know, I guess at the end of the day, you give some and you get some back. What disappointed me was the bogey on 4. I would have loved to not make -- it's always nice when you go through a bogey-free round.

Q. You've put yourself into contention -- normally you play at Loch Lomond, and you're not this year; why the change?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I heard good things about this course. Even though it's not a links course totally, it's got a links kind of feel to it. And the way it's been playing so far, I mean, we're hitting some tee shots with a 4-iron or with a 5-wood that are going 280. So, you know, you get a lot of run. You've got to work the ball because these fairways, you've got to work the fairways to make sure you hold the fairways.
It's probably a little bit better of a warm up, if you might say to The Open than maybe Loch Lomond might be. Obviously that was one of the reasons.

Q. Will you go early to Birkdale early?
SERGIO GARCIA: No. I don't like to go too early to the tournaments because then it feels like the week never ends. Actually the tournament never starts; it feels like you go out there on Saturday and by Tuesday, you're like -- I feel like I've been here for a week, and still two days to go. I don't like to feel that way.
So, no, I'll probably just go Monday. I'll just get some good practise at home. Even though it's not a links course, I'll work on the shots that I'm going to be hitting at The Open, which I can still do. I can still hit those long, knock-down shots and things like that. It's still going to be good practise and I'll just try to get myself as ready as possible for The Open.

Q. You talked about on Wednesday about the success of Spaniards in sports; how motivated are you to get your name back in the headlines?
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I try to do that every week and unfortunately it doesn't happen as often as I would like it to.
Obviously like I said on Wednesday, it's been a good month, month and a half for Spanish sports. Obviously I won THE PLAYERS Championship and Nadal won his fourth Roland Garros, and then obviously the Spanish team won the Euro Cup and Larrazabal won last week. I had a decent start for the first two days this week. It's good, and you always want to do well, so hopefully I'll keep it up.

Q. Is there a rivalry?
SERGIO GARCIA: What, between Rafael and myself? I mean, obviously when you see a friend of yours doing well, it makes you happy and you want to do well, too. It's always nice to talk to a friend and to ask him how things went and tell him how things have gone and this shot. It's been fun, we've been sending messages to each other congratulating each other. And he was asking me how I did yesterday and I told him what happened, and that I played very good but I didn't hole any putts.
So I'm sure he'll be happy about my round today and hopefully I'll be thrilled with his match this afternoon --

Q. When will you speak to him --
SERGIO GARCIA: As soon as you let me go out of here.

Q. I suppose you don't want to be the one Spaniard not achieving?
SERGIO GARCIA: Do you think I am? So then I'm asking you, am I? No? Then that answers your question.

Q. Do you know much about Larrazabal?
SERGIO GARCIA: He's obviously a great player. I played more with his brother, Alejandro, than with Pablo. But he's obviously a nice player. I think if he keeps the head on the right position and thinking about the right stuff, he could be a nice player to have. I don't know that he could be a Top-10 player in the world, but he could be a Top-15 player in the world. He has good potential. It's just a matter of making sure that he keeps going on the right track.

Q. Have you played tennis with Nadal?
SERGIO GARCIA: I did last year -- well, not play. I hit with him last year at Mallorca.

Q. How was that?
SERGIO GARCIA: It was awesome. It was great.

Q. Who won?
SERGIO GARCIA: What kind of question is that. Of course, me. What has he won? Has he won anything? (Laughter).
No, but we hit a little bit. Actually he was quite impressed with my tennis. He thought I was going to be a little bit worse. I was very impressed with his golf when we played the Pro-Am in Mallorca. So it's good fun.

Q. This new two caddie relationship, is that good for you?
SERGIO GARCIA: Is it good? If I didn't think it was good, I wouldn't do it, so obviously I do; I do think it's good for me. Mainly because, you know, I've been with Glen for about over eight years now. So obviously, you know, when you're so long with a person and you spend so much time together, there's moments where you kind of get tired of it.
This way, I have two different caddies, thankfully for me I have two probably of the best caddies in the world with Billy and Glen, and when I kind of get tired of one, the other one comes around, so it makes things a little bit easier.

Q. How do you sort the schedule?
SERGIO GARCIA: We look at it and have a rough idea. It might change here or there but we have a rough idea. We usually try to go in stretches of between three and five or six tournaments each.

Q. Is Rafael going to come down and watch you tomorrow?
SERGIO GARCIA: I wouldn't say so, no. It's easier for me to go and watch him than it is for him to come, because you know, I can get my things done and go and spend the afternoon there.
For him, it's a lot tougher to practise and then you never know, with the weather and we might get postponed and things like that. I don't think he will, but I think he's trying to win Wimbledon and I think he wants to stay and be focused there.

Q. Will you go in a car?
SERGIO GARCIA: You want me to go in a plane? No, I'm not that big time, not yet at least.

Q. Centre Court? Royal Box?
SERGIO GARCIA: No, I got some tickets. I think I'm in a box. No, that's too fancy for me.

Q. Have you been to any other matches so far this week?
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, Monday and Tuesday.

End of FastScripts




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