A Flash Interview With: Liselotte Neumann

Q. Good round. That's the best you have played in a long time on a big course.

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: Yeah, I feel like my game has been pretty good actually this year. I think my putting has been the thing I have been struggling with this year. I think with my win, last year sort of things started to turnaround a little bit for me. It was a struggle for a few years, now it's feels like it's coming around.

Q. Let's go over your card.

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: No. 1 was a par. I actually bogeyed No. 2, and 3, it was 2-over after three holes there.

Bogey on the 2nd hole was 6-iron, just rolled off the back of the green. I chipped it up to about 15 feet, then missed the putt.

Bogey on No. 3, I hit a 7-wood off the tee and pushed it out in the right rough, and as you know, the rough is pretty thick, so it wasn't much to do. I kind of advanced it just short of the green, chipped it up two-putted.

Then the birdies started coming here; birdied No. 5, I hit a sand wedge up to twelve feet, made a birdie on that hole.

Then I birdied 10, which I thought was a great birdie. Missed my drive in the right side bunker. Hit 8-iron up to about 15 feet, then made that putt for birdie.

Birdied 13. Pitching wedge to five feet.

Then a great birdie on 14, 5-iron just on the fringe kind of on the right side of the green. I putted it, about 20 feet away. Made that for birdie.

Unfortunately little struggle on the last hole pushed my drive way out right in the rough and just hit a sand wedge out to the bottom, kind of where the crosswalk is, and I hit a 9-iron up to the green to about twelve feet, two-putted for bogey.

Q. Good putting day. 27 putts.

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: Yes. Maybe a little, you know -- I had a couple of putts that were just off the fringe. I feel like I was hitting the ball pretty good, I made some really good putts, 12- and 15-footers were really big today. It's a good putting day.

Q. Talk about how your approach is different and your mindset this year.

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: I think it gave me some confidence back. I felt like I was just struggling out on the golf course, and after my win it was sort of just my last tournament of the year, last year and it just made my off-season really nice instead of the couple of years that I had before, where I felt like I had to practice all winter, and this year I was just able to kind of relax and put the clubs away for a little bit and do some other things and some conditioning and working out and kind of get my body in good shape for this season.

I feel like I have been playing quite well this year, just have not really rolled the ball that well. I think probably today was one of my better putting days that I have had this year. Pretty happy about that.

Q. Anything that you did differently in your putting today?

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: Trying to do a little more forward press, kind of get the more feel with my left hand instead of having a little too much with my grip, it seemed like it was rolling good. I guess I have got to stick with it.

Q. Your general thoughts about being near the top of the leaderboard after the first round.

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: I am very happy. It's always nice to come in in the red numbers. Like you say, obviously it's still early in the tournament and got three more days out there, but I feel like I am hitting the ball good, and when you start putting well, too, it gives you lots of confidence around the greens. I am very happy being at 1-under, being where I am right now.

Q. The greens, do you want them to keep them where they are now or do you expect them to make it any tougher?

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: I would probably think they would firm up a little bit, unless we get some thunderstorms coming in, but I think today just from yesterday I think today even the course was a little bit firmer than it was the first two days when we practiced. So with no rain, I think the course is going to play a little bit faster, get a little bit more roll on your tee shots, which it can be quite difficult out there because there's a lot of dog-legs. You don't want to roll through the fairways. You really got to start thinking about what to hit off the tees.

Also, if the greens get a little firmer it can make it really hard coming into some of them. So with no rain I think the course is just going to get tougher and tougher.

Q. You have seen Annika for a long time. Anything that you have noticed this week, if she's feeling any pressure? Is this week any different?

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: Haven't seen much of her this week. I am sure she feels a little bit of pressure, but you know, she's very strong mentally and I think she knows her game and she knows what she has to go out and do, so that shouldn't be a problem. Obviously she's playing well, so...

Q. Did she seek you out as a friend when she came on the Tour since you are both from Sweden?

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: Not really, no.

Q. Last year with Meg winning the Open thirteen years after she had won, do you look at someone like that and say that you could, I mean, in 17 years you can still come back and win this thing?

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: Absolutely. I think any time you see a player that won something a long time ago or anybody that's getting up a little bit in age, so many young players out here, obviously for us that has been out here for a while, it's always nice to see. It gives you the feeling that if you work hard and you stay in good shape and take care of yourself and, you know, that you can win, too. So I think everybody feels that way.

Q. Any difficulty adjusting to the altitude?

LISELOTTE NEUMANN: No. Not really. Basically we're taking like 10% off, you know. So it's basically just about a club and a half less into the greens. But so far it's been good. We have been picking a lot of good sticks out there so we're happy with it. Kind of nice to see the ball fly a little bit.

End of FastScripts.


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