What they said: Ryo Ishikawa

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June 20, 2012
PGA TOUR staff

MORE INTERVIEWS: Travelers Championship transcript archive

DOUG MILNE: Okay. I'd like to welcome Ryo Ishikawa. Ryo, making your first start here at the Travelers. If you could, kind of talk about your thoughts playing here for the first time, and then we'll take a few questions.

RYO ISHIKAWA: Yeah. The golf course is perfect shape, and it's going to be some rain tonight, so it's getting windy conditions tomorrow. So maybe you can play more challenging here. Also, I play with two young guys. So I'm very looking forward to it.

DOUG MILNE: Have you ever played with Patrick or John Peterson?

RYO ISHIKAWA: No.

DOUG MILNE: Have you watched them recently?

RYO ISHIKAWA: Yeah, yeah. I watched them on TV last week, John's play and Patrick play. So these guys play so good.

I just missed the cut last week due to my putting. So last week I had four times three-putt on Friday. So putting is my key point this week.

DOUG MILNE: Okay. The first few questions if we have any, he'll do those in English, and then after that, if all the locals are good, he'll go ahead and do the rest in Japanese.

Q. You're used to being kind of the young guy who everyone's watching in a group, but this week obviously Patrick is making his pro debut. Is that going to be a little different? Do you think you'll have a little less pressure on you playing in a group with all the attention on him?

RYO ISHIKAWA: You know, to have somebody like Patrick to play in the same group is fantastic, and I'm very honored to play with him.

I never actually played with Patrick before. I've been to the practice range and I have seen him swing. He has a very nice swing, and I actually look forward to playing with him.

Q. Ryo, I'd just like to ask you about a couple of holes on the back nine, the 15th hole, a drivable par-4, can you go through your club selection and how do you strategically make your mark on that hole??

RYO ISHIKAWA: Yeah, I have a caddie, a local caddie named Kevin Smith. He has a lot of knowledge on this golf course and for this 15th hole we talked a lot, and we're going to try to be aggressive during the four days. I'm probably going to use the driver a lot, and going to try to use the short game, have one close to the green and then do two-putt. So that's my plan for the 15th hole.

Q. The 17th hole, the par-4 off a hill, 420 yards usually plays pretty difficult. Can you describe why you think it plays so hard??

RYO ISHIKAWA: The 17 hole is a very fun, interesting, yet challenging course. The tee shot is -- you know, the driver when you're using a driver, it's very narrow. So around the 250 yard mark, that's where the course is wide, and I would like to -- for the second shot, from there to be aggressive.

Q. Are you becoming more comfortable with the conditions and the courses the more you play in the United States??

RYO ISHIKAWA: You know, the PGA TOUR is the No. 1 tour in the world, and I'm very honored to be participating in this TOUR. I believe that playing on this TOUR is more of a player development style, and that's why I like playing here.

Q. Obviously you're still so young, but did you expect to have won a PGA TOUR event by now, and also, I don't know if you know the history of this tournament, but it seems like a lot of players, Bubba Watson, Hunter Mahan, have gotten their first win here. Do you think this is a course and an event that you can get that break-through win??

RYO ISHIKAWA: This course is a great course to play in, especially the pin placement. It's very aggressive. That's the kind of style that I play. This is also the last tournament before I go back to Japan around this time. So I really want to play well, and hopefully to be part of the PGA -- to qualify for the PGA TOUR for next year.

DOUG MILNE: He's played a long stretch here. He's going back over to Japan for a while. He'll come back.

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