2001 US Open - Mark Brooks News Conference Transcript

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MARK BROOKS: Well, I've never been in an 18 hole playoff. It's going to be a lot like a match, like just a very important match. And the only difference is that you can have multiple shot swings on holes. So it was a very bizarre turn of events at the end, and I feel bad for him. Golf is a very cruel game at times. And my 3-putt was far more predictable than what happened to him. I'm sure he'll be ready to go tomorrow, and I will be, too.
 
Q. What's it like to be brought back to life?
 
MARK BROOKS: I don't know, I didn't know I was dead (laughter.) Again, it's just another -- a great break for me, and we'll see if it pans out. I played solid today and hit a lot of greens, and that will kind of be my goal tomorrow, just go out there and play the golf course, and see what happens.
 
Q. And secondly, what were you doing at that time, were you watching, were you leaving, had you packed up?
 
MARK BROOKS: I was just watching from my locker, on a regular-sized television. It was shocking, -- it was shocking enough to see Stewart do his thing, and so I feel bad for both of them. And that's probably -- you hate to say it, but it's like once one guy does it, all of a sudden it's the power of suggestion, that that's miserable. And it's kind of like when two guys get going, playing good together, they start making everything. I'm not blaming it on Stewart, don't get me wrong, but he probably did me a big favor by having that happen.
 
Q. Mark, can you just describe, was it like a jolt of electricity when you saw him miss that one-footer, or what kind of washed through your mind at that time. Did you say, 'My goodness, I may win out right'?
 
MARK BROOKS: I'm going to spend a night again with my perfect host and do it again. It was shocking. I've been around this game quite a long time, and not as long as Mr. Kite, who had a phenomenal round, or some of those other guys, but we've all witnessed phenomenal stuff.
 
Q. Did you think you might win out right, if he missed this again?
 
MARK BROOKS: I didn't go that far. There's been some people missing short putts, Doug Sanders at St. Andrews. And several missed at Augusta that were short and close. Hopefully, I'll have a good match tomorrow and it will be entertaining.
 
Q. Have you ever been on the other side of it where you've missed a short one that opened the door for somebody else like that?
 
MARK BROOKS: I'm sure I have. I don't want to jinx myself, though, but I'm sure I have.
 
Q. Do you think you have the advantage, now, in view of the things that happened, maybe --
 
MARK BROOKS: Well, probably not. We played together yesterday, and he did a lot of great stuff yesterday. I mean, I think he shot 69 and it was about as good a 69 as I've seen. It was scrambly, he was kind of all over the place, so he must have played a lot more solid today. We'll see.
 
Q. Mark, when Goosen hit his second shot on the green as close as it was, was it over in your mind?
 
MARK BROOKS: Yeah, I figured it was over. No question. And it probably should have been.
 
Q. Mark, when Tom Kite started the day the way he did, did you think this was the day when you were going to have to make a lot of birdies to win?
 
MARK BROOKS: No, not really, because I kind of had one of those rounds, I guess on Friday. And the golf course doesn't play extremely long. A couple of long, par-3s. And for me 18 is typically -- going to be a pretty long second shot. But if you get on a little bit of a roll, the greens are good and you can do it. Low scores are possible, but you would think that most of the leaders, guys in that position aren't going to be playing ultra aggressively. There were a lot of pins today that were pretty iffy, if you should have gone for them or not. I chose not to go for most of them.
 
Q. Mark, can you walk us through your thought processes once you got to your ball --
 
MARK BROOKS: Let me tell you -- go ahead.
 
Q. Well, go ahead.
 
MARK BROOKS: On 18?
 
Q. Yes.
 
MARK BROOKS: You know, the main thing I was trying to do was find the line. So I probably didn't pay enough attention to the speed. And, obviously, I hit it too hard. I think I picked the right line, if I had hit it softer, I think it would have been the right direction. But that green did look slow, and I was kind of having to start it up the hill. I think that was only my second 3-putt for the week. I know I 3-putted No. 5 the first day from a long range and kind of misread it and missed the speed. 72 holes, as many greens as I hit, to only 3-putt twice is pretty amazing.
 
Q. On the second putt did you just not hit it quite hard enough?
 
MARK BROOKS: No, I didn't hit it hard enough. I think if I hit it harder I would have misread it. I think it would have stayed up on the right. And it is tough. You're playing greens that are pretty darn fast all day, and playing pretty big sweepers. And then you get on that green, you can kind of take some break out and hit it a little firmer.
 
Q. Mark, did the fact that the USGA, they were babying that green a little bit, they didn't mow it. Was it playing differently, was there a different speed on the 18th green when you guys got there?
 
MARK BROOKS: Yeah, the 18th green is definitely a different speed. And 9 is a different speed. I hit a couple of decent shots into 9 and didn't really come close on either putt there, the last couple of days. Those two greens are definitely a different speed. And I guess, thank God, they are. My shot yesterday would have rolled 40 yards down yesterday, instead of 2-putting for par. Everybody had to play the same greens.
 
Q. On the back 9 how much did you watch the scoreboard to know what was going on behind you, and is there any time that it influenced the way you played the remainder of your round?
 
MARK BROOKS: I felt like five or six, I kind of thought six was the number. I played through 12 holes. When I played 13 and made birdie to get to 5. I saw they were both at 5. That's when I kind of felt like if you could get to 6, that was -- that would probably win the golf tournament. So, yes, I watched. I knew what was going on.