What they said: Sergio GarciaFebruary 19, 2012
PGA TOUR staff
MORE INTERVIEWS: Northern Trust Open transcript archive Q. At what point did you realize you had a special round going??
SERGIO GARCIA: It's hard to say, and on this course it's even harder to say because it's such a difficult golf course. I think that -- I started really well. I mean, I hit a great tee shot on 10, and I got quite a bad lie in the bunker, hit a great bunker shot and a good putt, unfortunately it didn't go in. And then you're kind of thinking, Jesus, here we go again. I hit a great second shot on 11, which I got a little lucky, it bounced just in the fringe and landed softly and made eagle there.
And then I obviously made a great par on 13 and then eagled 15 again. So there I was like, you know, it's a nice round, we're 4-under. Hopefully we can make two or three more chances that we have around and post a really nice round and see what happens.
And then we managed to birdie 16 and 18, and we almost eagled 1 again, and we really got going there with a bomb we made on 3. Unfortunately the bogey on 4 was a momentum stopper, but then I made a good par on the next and a great birdie on 6.
Q. Did you think starting today you had a chance to win??
SERGIO GARCIA: It's hard to say. Everything had to be absolutely perfect for me. I obviously couldn't make any bogeys, and I probably needed to -- when I was 8, I probably needed to make probably, I want to say, another three. So it's hard. I mean, 4 is a tough hole. I probably should have made par. And then 5 is a really tough pin position to make birdie at.
Then 6, 7 and 9, maybe you can birdie. 8 is a very tough pin, too. So everything had to go absolutely perfect. It's not that easy.
Q. What's it like for you going off on the back nine in a tournament like this in the morning where I'm guessing there weren't a lot of people following you at the beginning??
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, that was there on the 10th. No, there was a little bit, actually. I think the toughest thing was to play three times on the 10th, starting on 10 this week, and I had to walk up that hill probably six or seven times. That was probably the worst thing about it.
But no, you know, it's -- it doesn't -- we're used to playing with people, with more people, with less people, so it doesn't really bother us that much.
Q. How do you feel, obviously the 76 kind of made it difficult. You almost obviously missed the cut, now you come out and play two good rounds on the weekend going into next week, which I know you're a pretty emotional guy so I would think Match Play and playing well --
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, but Match Play is funny, and you guys know that. Match Play, I might go out next week and shoot 5-under and get beaten. You know, it's just the way it is. But obviously taking away the second round, which like I said earlier, I didn't play that badly. I probably played to shoot maybe 1-over. But other than that, the first round was nice. Yesterday I played good. I messed up a couple of holes and today I obviously played nicely.
It is good momentum for me, and I'm hoping that I can take it into next week and have a couple nice rounds early on and kind of get going as the tournament goes on.
Q. If Phil were to win today, could you just speak about how difficult winning two weeks in a row on this TOUR is --
SERGIO GARCIA: I've never done that. On the European Tour I have, but I don't think I've done it here, so it obviously must be very difficult.
Q. There's no easy matches next week, but when you get something like Luke against Ernie in the first round, do you think the general public will finally start understanding that it doesn't matter who you play with two names like that??
SERGIO GARCIA: Yeah, I would say so. But at the same time, you get it because it is what it is. Obviously Ernie hasn't been playing great. This week it looks like it's going a little bit better for him. But anything -- like I said before, anything can happen. But everybody is, I guess, where they deserve to be, and next week it's just a matter of getting ahead up there and hopefully getting in front of the guy you're playing and making sure that you don't let him breathe too much.
Q. You've lost in the first round and you've lost in the semifinals. Is either of them easier? Do you know what I'm saying? Do you get any more mad on a Wednesday than you do on a Saturday?
SERGIO GARCIA: You probably get more disappointed if you lose in the first round than if you do in the semifinals because at least if you lose in the semifinals you've had a good tournament, you've done some good things. If you lose in the first round, it's like you've got that bad taste in your mouth, and I can't play anymore. It's not like, for example, Friday, I shoot 76, but at least I had two more rounds to kind of take that away from me and I'll get rid of that feeling. Unfortunately in Match Play you don't.
Q. Can you talk about your putting this weekend, 24 today, and how that feels to be putting like this this early in the season??
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, today was nice. You know, funny enough, I feel like I haven't putted badly. These greens are very, very tricky, and in the afternoon they get bumpy. Even though they're very nice, they get bumpy, and it's very tough to make some putts.
Talking about it, though, I felt like I hit a lot of good putts, a couple here and there that I would love to hit better, but I've been putting nicely for a while now, and it feels good. Obviously I have days where I make more and days where I make less, but at the end of the day, it's about how you feel.
Q. What did you hit into 11??
SERGIO GARCIA: I hit 3-wood.
Q. How do you explain parring 17 and then birdieing 18? I think most people would have thought it would have been the other way around.
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, it's as simple as I hit a good drive, but it just -- just tweaked it a tiny bit to the right and caught the bunker, then couldn't reach, hit 8-iron. Sand wedge, didn't hit a great shot and two� putted from about 25 feet.
Then 18 I hit a great drive and I hit a very nice 8-iron just about 12 feet behind the hole and managed to make that. Golf is funny; it doesn't mean -- even if it's an easy par-5, it doesn't mean that you're going to birdie every single time. It's like it all depends on how you play.
15 is a very difficult hole, and today we managed to make 2. I mean, how do you deal with that? That's golf.
Q. And how did you manage to make 2??
SERGIO GARCIA: Well, I hit a good drive and a 4-iron, and it just went in the bottom.