Golf Talk Live -Curtis Strange Transcript Segment 1

By Golf Channel DigitalFebruary 26, 2001, 5:00 pm
TEASE
CURTIS STRANGE HAS ALWAYS COURTED PRESSURE AS THOUGH IT WERE A WELCOMED FRIEND. HE ROSE TO THE OCCASION WITH A FINAL HOLE EAGLE TO SECURE THE INDIVIDUAL AND TEAM TITLES IN THE NCAA'S FOR WAKE FOREST. HE WON BACK TO BACK U.S OPENS DURING HIS REIGN AS THE WORLD'S BEST PLAYER.

HE'S AN ACCOMPLISHED BROADCASTER AND WRITER AND THE CAPTAIN OF THE 2001 U.S RYDER CUP TEAM. MEET CURTIS STRANGE, NOW, ON GOLF TALK LIVE.

TOM STRANGE WAS NOT ONLY AN INCREDIBLE FATHER, HE WAS A VERY GOOD PLAYER, AND HE UNDERSTOOD THE GOLF SWING HE WOULD TEACH TO HIS TWIN SONS, CURTIS AND ALAN. TOM WON THE VIRGINIA STATE OPEN FIVE TIMES,

IS A MEMBER OF THE MIDDLE ATLANTIC HALL OF FAME AND THE VIRGINIA SPORTS HALL OF FAME. TOM STRANGE WAS AN ASSISTANT TO SAM SNEAD AT THE GREEN BRIAR IN WEST VIRGINIA, BEFORE MOVING BACK TO VIRGINIA TO RUN WHITE SANDS COUNTY CLUB IN VIRGINIA BEACH. TOM LOVED TEACHING JUNIOR PLAYERS.

ESPECIALLY HIS SONS CURTIS AND ALAN. TOM DIED WHEN THE TWINS WERE 14 AND CLOSE FAMILY FRIEND AND 1950 PGA CHAMPION CHANDLER HARPER GAVE CURTIS HIS TIME, HIS LOVE AND HIS GUIDANCE. HIS DAD HAD GIVEN HIM THE SWING.

WAKE FOREST COACH JESSE HADDOCK WOULD BE CURTIS' LAST FATHER FIGURE AND WAS A TOUGH BUT LOVING DISCIPLINARIAN. CURTIS WOULD HELP WAKE FOREST AND JESSE HADDOCK TO THEIR FIRST NCAA TITLE IN 1974 WITH A FINAL HOLE EAGLE THAT GAVE CURTIS THE INDIVIDUAL TITLE AS WELL.

AS AN AMATEUR, CURTIS WON EVERYTHING BUT THE U.S. AMATEUR. AT HOME, HE WON THE VIRGINIA STATE JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP IN 1970 AND'72 AND THE STATE AMATEUR IN 1974 AND '75. HE WON THE EASTERN, THE WESTERN AND NORTH AND SOUTH AMATEURS. HE PLAYED ON THE WINNING 1975 WALKER CUP TEAM.

HE MAY HAVE BEEN THE BEST PLAYER IN THE 1976 PGA TOUR QUALIFYING TOURNAMENT, YET HE FAILED TO QUALIFY. AFTER A EUROPEAN TOUR STINT, HE JOINED THE PGA TOUR IN THE SPRING OF 1977. WHILE THERE WOULD BE DISAPPOINTMENTS, LIKE THE 1985 MASTERS, THE 1990 U.S OPEN, AND THE '95

RYDER CUP, CURTIS FULFILLED HIS POTENTIAL AND BECAME THE NUMBER ONE PLAYER IN THE WORLD. HE WON 17 TIMES ON TOUR FROM 1979 THROUGH 1989 INCLUDING BACK TO BACK U.S. OPENS IN 1988 AND '89. HE PLAYED ON FIVE RYDER CUP TEAMS AND IS THE CAPTAIN OF THE 2001 U.S. RYDER CUP TEAM. CURTIS HOLDS A COURSE RECORD, 62, AT THE OLDEST 18 HOLE COURSE IN THE WORLD, THE OLD COURSE AT ST. ANDREWS.

HE WAS THE FIRST TO WIN ONE MILLION DOLLARS IN A SEASON ON THE PGA TOUR. CURTIS WON THREE MONEY TITLES AND PLAYER OF THE YEAR HONORS. CURTIS IS IN HIS 40'S NOW AND THERE ARE OTHER WORLDS BESIDES WINNING TOURNAMENTS. HE'S AN ACCOMPLISHED TELEVISION ANALYST FOR ABC SPORTS.

HE'S A RESPECTED WRITER FOR GOLF MAGAZINE. HE'S A LOVING HUSBAND TO SARAH AND A GREAT FATHER TO HIS SONS DAVID AND THOMAS. LIKE MANY GREAT SPORTSMAN HE'S OPINIONATED, ARROGANT AND TOO TOUGH ON HIMSELF. FOR SO MANY YEARS HE DROVE HIMSELF TO BE THE BEST HE COULD BE. FORCED HIMSELF TO WORK HARD ENOUGH TO

REALIZE HIS MAGNIFICENT OPPORTUNITY. TO FULLY AND HAPPILY EXPLOIT HIS VAST POTENTIAL AND ALL THOSE 5 FOOT PUTTS HE HOLED AS A YOUNG TEENAGER TO WIN THE IMAGINARY U.S. OPEN, WHILE PUTTING ALONE ON THE PRACTICE GREENS NEAR HOME, WERE SUCCESSFULLY HOLED

AGAIN WHEN HE WAS THE BEST IN THE WORLD. HE DREAMT OF BEING A MAJOR CHAMPION AND ON ANY NIGHT HE CHOOSES HE CAN DREAM AGAIN OF WHAT WAS BECAUSE THE DREAMS, NOW MEMORIES, ALL CAME TRUE.

PETER KESSLER
WELCOME TO GOLF TALK LIVE, I'M PETER KESSLER. GREAT PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE YOU TO THE UNITED STATES RYDER CUP CAPTAIN, FORMER NUMBER ONE IN THE WORLD, CURTIS STRANGE. GREAT TO HAVE YOU HERE.

CURTIS STRANGE
THANK YOU PETER.

PETER KESSLER
AND I TELL YOU

CURTIS STRANGE
NICE TO BE HERE.

PETER KESSLER
NOBODY'S BEEN BETTER THAN YOU AT CALLING IN THE LAST 5, 6 YEARS AND CHECKING IN AND TELLING US WHAT YOU THINK AND I APPRECIATE IT.

CURTIS STRANGE
WELL SOME OF THE GUESTS YOU'VE HAD ON, YOU KNOW, YOU GET THE URGE TO CALL IN AND SAY HOW MUCH THEY MEANT TO YOU. YOU KNOW, I REMEMBER THE LAST THING WAS JERRY PATE. HE AND I WERE TRAVELING MATES WITH JAY HAAS IN AMATEUR GOLF AND, AND

BOB GOLBY MEANT SO MUCH TO ME OVER THE YEARS THROUGH JAY HAAS, AND THEY'RE, THE PEOPLE LIKE THAT YOU WANT TO KIND OF EXPRESS YOUR, YOUR APPRECIATION AND THANKS.

PETER KESSLER
I REMEMBER WHEN JER... WHEN YOU CALLED IN WHEN JERRY WAS HERE. YOU BASICALLY TOLD HIM THAT HE WAS LUCKY TO BEAT YOU IN THE U.S. AMATEUR.

CURTIS STRANGE
IT WAS NOT THE FIRST TIME I EVER TOLD HIM THAT EITHER. (LAUGHS) HE, YOU KNOW, HE WAS, JERRY PATE WAS, WAS, WAS A FANTASTIC PLAYER. HE WAS THE NEXT SUPERSTAR AND HE GOT ME THAT DAY.

PETER KESSLER
OTHER THAN PICKING OUT REALLY UGLY SHIRTS FOR YOUR TEAM, WHAT DOES A RYDER CUP CAPTAIN DO SEVEN MONTHS BEFORE THE RYDER CUP BEGINS?

CURTIS STRANGE
OH GOSH, I DON'T, DO WE HAVE ENOUGH TIME? UH, REALLY, SARAH AND I HAVE, HAVE BEEN DILIGENTLY WORKING SINCE DAY ONE. YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER THAT ALL THESE THINGS HAVE TO BE ORDERED AND PREPARED AND ORGANIZED WELL

BEFORE THE MATCHES GET HERE. AS A PLAYER, YOU KNOW, YOU GO INTO THE, TO THE MATCHES. YOU DON'T THINK TOO MUCH ABOUT THEM UNTIL YOU GET THERE MONDAY AND THEN YOU'RE READY TO PLAY AS A TEAM, BUT AS A CAPTAIN, YOU KNOW, ANYBODY EVER TELLS ME THAT ORDERING SHIRTS AND SWEATERS AND SLACKS IS AN EASY JOB, THEY'D BEST

START DUCKING IN A HURRY. I'LL TELL YOU. I'M SO SICK OF PIN STRIPES AND COLLAR STRIPES BUT, ANYWAY, WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING. YOU KNOW EVERYTHING REMOTELY CLOSE WITH THE RYDER CUP GOES ACROSS THE DESK. I MEAN IT'S KIND OF NEAT. IT'S, WE, WE

DESIGNED THE BAG ONE NIGHT AND WE, YOU KNOW, OBVIOUSLY THE CLOTHES AND UMBRELLAS AND LOGISTICS, SCHEDULES ALREADY. EVERYTHING THE PLAYERS MIGHT NEED DURING THE WEEK IS DONE.

PETER KESSLER
WHAT DO YOUR SONS THINK ABOUT THIS WHOLE RYDER CUP EXPERIENCE THAT YOU'RE GOING THROUGH NOW?

CURTIS STRANGE
I THINK PROBABLY THEY HAVE THE ATTITUDE THEY'VE HAD THEIR WHOLE LIFE WITH DAD AND WHAT HE DOES FOR A LIVING. IT'S JUST IT'S PART OF IT, IT'S ANOTHER THINGS HE'S GOING THROUGH, ANOTHER THING HE'S DOING AND YOU KNOW THEY WERE THERE AT THE '95 RYDER CUP WHICH WAS A WONDERFUL

EXPERIENCE FOR THEM, BUT YOU KNOW, IT'S JUST IT'S SOMETHING DAD'S DOING. YOU KNOW, WE KIND OF DO OUR THING AND PLAY OUR GOLF OR BASKETBALL AND GO TO SCHOOL AND, AND HOPEFULLY HE'S THERE TONIGHT WHEN WE COME HOME BUT A LOT OF TIMES HE'S NOT.

PETER KESSLER
WHAT KIND OF PLAYERS ARE YOUR SONS?

CURTIS STRANGE
OKAY. THEY, THEY'RE OKAY. THEY ENJOY THE GAME. I ALWAYS SAID TO MYSELF, AND THIS IS THE WAY I WAS BROUGHT UP, THAT MY DAD NEVER PUSHED ME TO THE

GAME, HE WANTED ME TO COME TO IT BECAUSE IF YOU COME TO IT YOURSELF YOU TRULY FALL IN LOVE WITH IT AND I DIDN'T WANT TO PUSH THEM. I, I JUST ALWAYS WANTED THEM TO, TO LEARN TO PLAY WELL ENOUGH SO THEY COULD ALWAYS ENJOY THE GAME IN ANY

BUSINESS OR ENDEAVOR THEY WOULD GO IN TO AND THEY ALREADY DO THAT WHICH IS, WHICH IS GREAT.

PETER KESSLER
HOW IMPORTANT HAS YOUR WIFE SARAH BEEN TO YOUR SUSTAINED SUCCESS OVER THE LAST 25 YEARS?

CURTIS STRANGE
YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO ASK THOSE TOUGH QUESTIONS SO EARLY IN THE SHOW. I,

PETER KESSLER
LET ME READ YOU THROUGH MY NOTES.

CURTIS STRANGE
YOU KNOW IT'S, YOU KNOW WE MET IN COLLEGE AND YOU KNOW, SHE DIDN'T KNOW WHO I WAS OR WHAT I DID AT COLLEGE OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT AND, AND THEN WE TURNED PRO, AND I SAY WE, YOU KNOW WE TRAVELED AND WE, WE, WE YOU KNOW SCRIMPED PENNIES, WE HAD TO. I DIDN'T KNOW IF I COULD MAKE

IT ON TOUR AND YOU KNOW ALWAYS SUPPORT FROM BEHIND AND YOU KNOW, LOOKING BACK ON IT, IT MEANT MORE TO ME, IT MEANS A WHOLE LOT MORE TO ME NOW THAN IT DID THEN, BUT JUST SOMEBODY'S ALWAYS THERE.

NEVER TALKED GOLF AND AS WE PROGRESSED AND BECAME MORE SUCCESSFUL WE WERE JUST ALWAYS THERE AND THEN WE HAD KIDS AND ALWAYS THERE FOR THE KIDS AND YOU KNOW I HAVE TWO GOOD BOYS AND IT'S

NOT BECAUSE OF ME SO MUCH. IT'S BECAUSE OF MY, MY WIFE AND UH SHE'S BEEN WONDERFUL TO THE FAMILY AND, AND YOU KNOW, RECENTLY WITH THE RYDER CUP SHE'S BEEN PICKING A LOT OF PIN STRIPES AND STRIPES AND SWEATERS FOR ME. I WOULDN'T DARE TRY TO DO IT BY MYSELF.

PETER KESSLER
HOW INCREDIBLE DID YOU FIND HER SUPPORT WHEN YOU NEEDED IT AFTER YOU DIDN'T MAKE QUALIFYING SCHOOL THE FIRST TIME AROUND? HOW SOLID WAS SHE?

CURTIS STRANGE
WELL WHATEVER , I THINK, WHEN I LOOK BACK ON THAT, IT WAS, IT WAS '76, AT BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS, OF ALL PLACES AND I THINK, YOU NEED SUPPORT, PETER, WHEN YOU DON'T DO WELL. WHEN YOU'RE DOING WELL, YOU KNOW, EVERYTHING IS ROSIE AND YOU KNOW

YOU'RE HOLDING THE TROPHY UP OR, OR WHATEVER. YOU'RE PLAYING WELL, LIFE IS GOOD, BUT YOU NEED SUPPORT, YOU NEED PEOPLE THERE WHEN THINGS AREN'T GOING WELL, AND THAT WAS THE FIRST REALLY DEVASTATING TIME OF MY CAREER. I, I THINK AT THAT TIME, COMING UP THROUGH AMATEUR GOLF WAS

FANTASTIC. THAT WAS THE FIRST TIME I'D EVER HAD A REAL SET BACK. I LO...MISSED BY A SHOT. I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE THE, THE GUY YOU KNOW TO, TO PLAY WELL AND TO GET ON TOUR AND DO WELL AND NOW I DON'T HAVE A

CARD AND DIDN'T HAVE A PLACE TO PLAY AND WE CRIED LIKE BABIES THAT NIGHT IN THE ROOM. WE DID. AND, BUT WE CAME BACK.

PETER KESSLER
DID YOU CONSIDER DOING ANYTHING ELSE WITH YOUR LIFE EXCEPT PLAYING GOLF THEN?

CURTIS STRANGE
WELL I THINK I REMEMBER THAT NIGHT, YOU KNOW, AS YOU, AS YOU BEAT YOURSELF UP A LITTLE BIT, I DIDN'T KNOW WHAT I WAS GOING TO DO FOR A LIVING BUT I THINK YOU COME TO YOUR SENSES WHEN YOU WAKE UP THE NEXT MORNING

AND REALIZE THE SUN DOES COME UP THE NEXT DAY, UH, AS MUCH AS YOU MIGHT NOT WANT IT TO SOMETIMES, IT CAME UP. WE WENT BACK TO CAROLINA. I PRACTICED AND, AND WENT TO PINEHURST. ONE OF MY FAVORITE PLACES, FOR THE NEXT QUALIFYING SCHOOL AND JUST

EVERYTHING KIND OF EVOLVED FROM THERE, BUT, YOU KNOW IT'S, IF YOU DIDN'T HAVE THOSE TIMES, IF YOU DIDN'T

HAVE THE SET BACKS, IF YOU DIDN'T HAVE THE TIMES THAT YOU NEVER THOUGHT YOU'D COME BACK FROM, YOU WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO ENJOY THE GOOD TIMES. YOU WOULDN'T APPRECIATE THEM.

PETER KESSLER
WHEN WE COME BACK LET'S TALK ABOUT YOUR DAD A LITTLE BIT, AND WE'LL DO THAT IN JUST A MOMENT.

(MUSIC)

(BREAK)

NEXT SEGMENT
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Hahn jabs USGA over possible ball rollback

By Will GrayFebruary 25, 2018, 4:43 pm

As debate continues to heat up over possible sweeping changes to the golf ball amid distance concerns, PGA Tour pro James Hahn chimed in to question the merits of a potential rollback.

The ball and distance debate gained traction earlier this week when Jack Nicklaus offered that the ball should be rolled back to the approximate distances achieved in 1995, and he put blame for the current situation squarely at the feet of Titleist. That drew a response from former Titleist CEO Wally Uihlein, who put the onus back on the governing bodies.

It's an issue that will likely be discussed for months to come, but Hahn took to Twitter to throw a jab toward the USGA and play devil's advocate on some key arguments related to a possible rollback:

Hahn, who has two career PGA Tour wins and lost in a playoff last month at the Sony Open, ranks 55th on Tour this season in driving distance with an average of 301.2 yards off the tee.

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Na fires back over slow play criticism from cricketer

By Will GrayFebruary 25, 2018, 4:00 pm

Kevin Na fired back over recent criticism he received about his purported slow play at last week's Genesis Open.

Kevin Pietersen is a retired English cricketer with more than 3.6 million followers on Twitter. He tweeted a video of Na, known as one of the slower players on the PGA Tour, taking more than a minute to line up and hit what he described as a "Tap In" during the final round at Riviera:

He then added another video of himself on a green in Dubai, where he again called out Na and showed how long he believed it should take for a player to brush in a short putt:

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Pepperell wins his first European Tour title in Qatar

By Associated PressFebruary 25, 2018, 3:31 pm

DOHA, Qatar - Eddie Pepperell survived a tense finish to win the Qatar Masters at the Doha Golf Club on Sunday for his maiden European Tour title.

The 27-year-old Englishman held off a spirited challenge from compatriot Oliver Fisher, who needed a third successive birdie on the 18th hole to force a playoff, but had his putt from six feet slip past the hole for a par.

Pepperell shot a 2-under-par 70 for a four-day tally of 18 under 270, while Fisher, who started the day tied for the lead, could only manage a 71.

Sweden's Marcus Kinhult (68) finished third at 16-under.

The No. 154-ranked Pepperell made things difficult for himself with a bogey on the 15th hole, but hit a superb wedge to three feet on the next to get back to 18 under again.

Fisher, who appeared to have fallen out of contention with three bogeys starting on the third hole, stormed back with birdies on the 14th, 16th and 17th holes.

On the last, Pepperell laid up with his second into the thick rough, made wet and unwieldy by rain in the Qatar capital, but found the green in three and two-putted for the win when Fisher missed his birdie putt.


Full-field scores from the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters


''I did the things I needed to do, I didn't play fantastic but I won ugly and for the first win to be ugly is good. Hopefully, I'll have some prettier ones in the future,'' said Pepperell.

''I knew I was playing well, especially tee to green, so I expected a lot of myself this week and I guess to pull it off is amazing. When Oli birdied the 17th, that was when it really caught up with me that I was only one ahead. I was in my own zone, I knew I had a couple of shots of lead but Oli did great. It was a tough front nine for him and I had to stay right in my own way and out of the two guys' way because they were struggling a bit and it's sometimes easy to get dragged into that.''

Fisher was disappointed, but saw the silver lining in the way he fought back.

''It went all the way to the last hole which, after my front nine, was what I was hoping for on the back nine,'' said Fisher, who won the 2011 Czech Open, but recorded his first top-three finish since the 2014 Africa Open.

''I hit a lot of good shots coming down the back nine and gave myself a lot of good chances, but there were just too many bogeys today, four in total, so you're never going to win a tournament making that many mistakes on a Sunday. But at least I pressed him all the way.''

Italian Renato Paratore (66) had the low round of the day and finished tied for fourth place at 15 under par, where he was joined by the Spanish pair of Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano and Pablo Larrazabal along with Gregory Havret of France.