Senior PGA Championship

Interview with Seiji Ebihara

June 7, 2003

Note: The news conference was moderated by Julius Mason, Director of Public Relations and Media Relations for the PGA of America.

JULIUS MASON: Comments on the round today.

SEIJI EBIHARA: As you can see it's raining today and I am very sorry about it, but after going through six holes I didn't think the weather was that bad, but when I was coming back after the play was suspended I saw the 11th hole and I saw the river and now I realize how bad the weather was. As for my play today, if I get the ball into the rough, I know it's going to be a bogey. So I was praying to God that I just wanted to keep all the balls on the fairway even if the ball doesn't go as far as it's supposed to.

JULIUS MASON: Questions, please.

Q. The way you started today did you want play to be suspended?

SEIJI EBIHARA: As looking at my place, I didn't really want to stop it, but after looking at the hole 18th hole, it's something you can't help and I guess that's how it is. And tomorrow I hope the weather is going to be better so now I can put on the visor that was signed by -- autographed by Mr. (Arnold) Palmer, so now I think I will do even better tomorrow.

Q. What has been your biggest thrill in golf so far up until possibly winning this championship your biggest tournament victory or biggest satisfaction in the game?

SEIJI EBIHARA: I haven't won that many tournaments so I am not sure about it, but the first time I was very thrilled with at the ABI in Europe, I made a birdie, birdie in a row and that made me the champion, that was very thrilling, but of course, this tournament is a major and I never been up so high in a major before, so I am very thrilled, very nervous right now.

Q. Are you able to bring any comforts from home or from the European Tour with you to make you feel a little more at-home while you are here?

SEIJI EBIHARA: At home it's different from home, but when I am over here the galleries, when I make a birdie putt or any kind of good plays, because all the galleries, they stand up and clap and cheer for us, it makes you more comfortable and it makes me much more satisfied over here.

Q. You made a significant move this morning where you now have a two-shot difference between the rest of the field. Do you consider yourself a good rain player? You mentioned earlier that you didn't think it was raining that hard, how well do you feel like you played in the rain was this an indication of that?

SEIJI EBIHARA: Yesterday after the rounds I heard that it's going to rain today so I went outside and just kept on practicing to get the ball up higher and higher so that what I think is if the ball gets high, the ball won't sway, so from the first hole I just tried to get the ball up high as possible instead of making it go straight and yesterday I went off and practiced on a 5-iron to get it higher. I guess that's showing up right now.

Q. Describe the long putt you had today.

SEIJI EBIHARA: On that hole I will have to say I was just lucky because the ball had to stop as it went up and it had to stop at the top and then it went down to the right, so if it didn't stop up there it would have just rolled on, but because I practiced on the practice rounds and the greens were pretty fast, I guess that made it lucky. I was able to get it in. I just have to say that's lucky. (Laughs).

Q. Which hole was that?

SEIJI EBIHARA: 5th hole.

Q. The 65 you shot in the last round at (the Senior) PGA last year, does that give you a -- did that give you a little confidence going into this PGA tournament?

SEIJI EBIHARA: That's true. Not only that, this is my fourth time that I am at this tournament so now I sort of understand all -- how the courses layout and how I am supposed to play so that made me a little bit more confident.

JULIUS MASON: Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen.

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