Interview by Lisa Freedman
I played with Ian Woosnam — that might have been the only time I played with someone shorter than me. He was a hero of mine when I was a kid. I idolized him for what he could do for his size. I don’t know many golfers who are shorter than me.
I certainly don’t have a textbook swing and I have a limitation with my arms [because of a wrist injury he suffered during his second Tour event in 2001]. I’ve been hitting balls since I was 4 years old and that swing’s ingrained — it’s not going to change. Lucky for me it works, and it works under pressure.
A lot of the guys discuss when they’re going to retire. I say that the competitive spirit’s never going to come out of you, that no matter how old you get you always want to beat other guys. I’ll probably only hang it up when I really have to.
Fun for me is getting together with friends and having a few beers. Michelob Ultra is my beer of choice because then I
feel like I’m working out.
I’ve only just started easing into gym stuff. It’s tough to go from not doing any gym to working out like a madman, so it’s a slow process. I’m giving myself a couple years to get into it.
If you offered me $100 for every pushup I could do, you’d owe me $2. Because of my wrists I can’t actually do a lot of
exercises. Even something as simple as a push-up hurts.
Once I hit 2-under on the first day [of the 2006 Masters, where he finished second], I knew I was in the hunt and every shot was going to be crucial come Sunday. Unfortunately, I stumbled on my third round. But going into Sunday I was right there, playing with Tiger. That whole week was exciting because I had a chance to win — I had it right from the start.
At the start of the [Masters] week I would have been happy with second, or a top-five position. In hindsight, I could have won. I can now go there and know that if I play well, I have a chance to win.
I have a remotecontrolled racing car. I had a remote-controlled airplane, and that was fun until I crashed it. I like to buy stuff that I didn’t have as a kid. I didn’t have a tough upbringing, but I wasn’t spoiled. If I ever got anything it was
always golf-related. Now I spoil myself with fun little toys.
I don’t notice the groupies. I hear there are a bunch of them every week, but I never get to see it. The caddies get to them before the players do. Golfers have generally not been in the best of shape — a groupie would need to have her head checked if she wanted to get with me. Golfers are not really flashy guys.I think the groupies are in for a bit more excitement than what we can provide.