MORE INTERVIEWS: FedEx St. Jude Classic transcript archive
THE MODERATOR: Robert, thanks for joining us here in the interview room at the FedExCup St. Jude Classic. Obviously I know it wasn't the outcome you hoped for last year, but there have to be some good feelings coming back to a place you've played well.
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yeah, definitely. I mean, last year here I was -- probably deserved to be second. Probably not second behind Lee, but that's another thing.
I played well here, and I like the golf course, and I'm looking forward to playing again.
THE MODERATOR: If you could just talk a little bit about the state of your game coming into this weekend. I know you had a T5 at Colonial, the Crowne Plaza Invitational. Talk about state of your game coming into this week.
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yeah, I'm pretty happy actually. I played fairly well this spring. I haven't put together the scores I'm hoping to, but if everybody would know how to do that, I would have a Nobel Peace Prize in golf, I think.
But I'm happy with the way I'm striking the ball, so I'm looking forward to going and playing.
Q. It's obviously always hot here, but did you expect what you've seen as far as the forecast for the next few days??
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yes. (Laughter.) Pretty much. I remember it was difficult -- that's one of the things here playing in Memphis, it's very, very hot, and I was prepared for it. I didn't really do much yesterday. I chilled out a couple hours late in the afternoon and playing the pro-am today. I know that's a part of playing this event. You just have to take it and prepare as well as you can for it and make sure you stay hydrated and not get too caught up in outside conditions.
Q. How often do you encounter this kind of weather on the Tour during the course of a year??
ROBERT KARLSSON: It depends a bit where you choose to play. I mean, we have very similar conditions when we play in Indonesia and Malaysia and Asian events usually. In Europe we don't really have it at all. And usually the U.S. PGA, Tulsa, that type of thing. But not at all in Europe, so it's quite new.
Q. Are you playing next week at the Open??
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yeah.
Q. How much can this course help you prepare for Congressional??
ROBERT KARLSSON: Well, I've never played Congressional before, and I just heard it's a very, very tough golf course. And playing this time of year in America, you can encounter this weather, hopefully not for all four days.
But anyway, apart from that, I think for me it's quite nice to play the week before a major. I think it'll be set up quite different from this because it'll be way more greener than this golf course is. This is very dry. The golf course will run a bit off the fairways, and it's Bermuda greens here, which I don't think it will be in Washington, so it's quite different. But it's quite nice just to keep playing and get rounds going. And it's a tough golf course, even though it's tough in a totally different way than Congressional will be I expect.
Q. How strange was last year's finish for you in terms of being able to get into a playoff? I know what Robert went through.
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yeah, I mean, it was -- when Robert made par on 17 I felt like the torment was over for -- my chance to win was over, and I just tried to make a par or a birdie the last hole to sort of see if I could end up as good as possible, and then to keep -- have to keep playing extra holes felt -- yeah, it was definitely weird. But it was feeling like getting a new chance to win the event. I mean, those are the things that happen sometimes. I didn't manage to take it, but it was good. I was very, very happy with the way I played the event last year, and I was -- as I said before, I probably deserved a second place, but not behind Westwood. (Laughter.)
Q. Were you in front of Robert??
ROBERT KARLSSON: I played with him.
Q. So you had to sit in the 18th fairway and watch??
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yes, which was not very easy for me, either. Because I mean, when you're playing in that situation you just want to keep playing and be in your rhythm, and obviously when something like that happens, it sort of breaks up your rhythm a bit and things like that.
I mean, I was very, very happy to see Robert win at the end of the season. I felt really, really good, because he was the deserved winner here. I think every golfer has made their mistakes, and as long as you can learn from them and go on, which he definitely did, it's made him a better golfer. That's why it's so great to see him play really well at the end and again almost winning the first match. So I think he learned his lesson, and that's great to see.
Q. You saw the pairing for tomorrow. You guys are back together, the group that was in the playoff. What were your thoughts when you first saw that pairing??
ROBERT KARLSSON: I think it's a -- I think that the TOUR in general is doing the right thing with creating a bit more interest around the pairings. I think it was a very good idea what they did in the WGC where they put 1-2-3, 4-5-6 and so forth together, and to do it this way, I'm completely for it. We were very lucky because it's a good group of people, as well, to play with, so that's fine. I mean, we're all going to play 36 holes anyway, so it doesn't matter. It's nothing bad. I would say it's more positive.
THE MODERATOR: Thanks for your time. Best of luck this week.