Interview with Karrie Webb and Chella Choi

The Australian World No.8 addresses the media after her fifth ISPS HANDA Women’s Australian Open win at The Victoria Golf Club and runner-up Chella Choi gives a reaction after her final round.



Q. What a difference, not a day makes; what a difference a week makes?

            KARRIE WEBB: [LAUGHS]  Actually, I forgot to mention on the 18th, but a couple of years ago Stacy Keating signed for a wrong score at the British Open and obviously she was devastated and then she went and won the next two weeks that she played.   She text me last week and said, remember what happened to me after I got DQ'd.  I actually thought about that when I was walking up 18, that that might come true for me as well.  Definitely a different feeling than last week.

Q. You don't hear this, but it's so evident to us that when the young players come in and they ask who did you look up to, who do you still look up to, it's always you.  I know that mantel you feel quite heavily but what a thrill that these girls are out here and still have the experience to play alongside you.

KARRIE WEBB: Thank you Kathie.  It's been nearly 20 years, so it's been a wonderful ride and it's continuing to be that as well.  I feel very fortunate to have won today. But I liked my chances at the start of the day because of the wind picking up.  If we had another day like we had the first three days, I probably was a little too far back to have a chance, so I was thankful for the weather changing and I played as good as I have in a very long time.


Q.  Karrie, you've just touched on this but I'm just wondering whether what happened last week sort of had something to do with the fact that you've won today in the sense, that you were obviously annoyed with yourself and the world, did it, in a funny sort of way, help you?

            KARRIE WEBB:  I'm not sure.  I mean, it wasn't something that was easy to shake off and still isn't because it's been very hard for me to walk out of the score tent this week until they've checked my score card about four times [LAUGHS]. 

It's amazing what happens, what a difference a week makes.  Obviously this time last week I wouldn't be expecting to be sitting here, so I'm glad things changed around quickly for me.


            Q.  I know you said early in the week that you felt a little underdone coming in to the tournament because you didn't get as much golf as you had expected last week.  Did you feel that you had that final round in you; you posted the best score of the day. Did you see that coming?

            KARRIE WEBB: I'm not sure if I saw it coming, but sometimes for me the tougher the conditions the better because I have to really get out of my head.  I have to not think technically.  I think when the conditions are milder you try to be more perfect, I think because the conditions are easy so you should be shooting low scores.  When the conditions are tough I think I get out of that mindset and I just feel the shot that I need to. That's what I was doing today. 


I realised that early on.  I was hitting some quality shots early on and I realised that I'd gotten into that mindset and so I stayed on top of myself to make sure that that's what I did and never tried to hit a shot.  I just played the shot that the conditions dictated.


            Q.  One of the young Australians, MinJee Lee, she obviously was leading coming into today and she had a pretty tough day.  She's your scholarship holder, have you managed to see her after her round to see how she felt?

            KARRIE WEBB:  Yeah, just briefly.  I told her good playing.  Conditions like today when you are leading, it's probably tougher than if you're behind because you don't have as much to lose when you're behind and posting a score is always hard for the people behind to not play just to beat that.


She's got more talent in her little finger than I ever did at 17.  She should hold her head up high.  She's played very well the last two weeks, probably the best out of anyone consistently the last two weeks.  She should be really proud of herself.  You'll definitely see a lot more of her.


            Q.  Karrie, that's 40 LPGA wins, which is pretty damn good.  But there's a bit of confusion in here about how many career wins you've had, 50 something, but do you know?

            KARRIE WEBB: Well, I think I know but I hear so many different numbers that I'm not sure if I've counted correctly [LAUGHS], but I think it's 52.  Do you think it's more than that?


            Q.  On your website it's 51 plus...

            KARRIE WEBB:  I've heard 55 today before, so I don't know where - but I know that Louise Suggs just gained three more wins from somewhere in history; they'd forgotten to count [LAUGHS].   I don't know if mine are getting added up and more are on there or not, but in my count it's 52.


            Q. Karrie, the putt you holed on 11, did that give you a sense that you could go on from there and win it or did you realise at that particular point where that puts you relative to everyone else?

            KARRIE WEBB: Well, before I putted, I didn't realise that there was a leader board over there, which was good because that meant I was obviously involved in my putt.  So I wasn't aware of what was leading.  The last time I'd seen a leader board the leaders had only played the first hole and they both birdied and they were 14-under, so when I made that putt, then when I walked back to the back of the green and I saw the leader board and I realised that now I was tied for the lead.


So I actually had trouble calming myself down then.  I was obviously pumped up that I made the putt but then of course I made that to tie for the lead.  I had a little bit of trouble calming myself down on the next hole, I didn't hit a very good tee shot, but I ended up making a really good par, so that sort of settled me down.  It was a little up and down coming in, but the conditions were so difficult that it was hard to hit some quality shots and know exactly where the wind was coming from. 


Yes certainly that really got me pumped up and I knew then that I had a good chance.


            Q.  Coming in did you have a number in your head, that if you got to 12 that that was going to be a good number?

            KARRIE WEBB: I was trying not to do that because at the start of the day you just need to go as low as you can and I was trying not to set a score.  A couple of times I said I needed to get to probably 12 but again, I tried to put that out of my mind and just hit shots and see what I came up with at the end of the day.


            Q.  Have you got another Major in you?

            KARRIE WEBB:  Well I hope so.  If I can do the mental job that I did especially today, I think I did a pretty good job all week and especially the weekend, if I maintain that standard then I think I can.


Thank you and thank you Karrie and congratulations.



CHELLA CHOI (quick quotes)


Q. What was going on out there today?


CHELLA CHOI: Today there was a lot of wind. On the second I went out of bounds on the right hand side and that was a really big problem for me.

It was a hard game today. I don’t like that part. Karrie played so good today.


Q. Not a bad finish though – runner up – not the outcome you wanted but two more tournaments in a row – are you looking forward to those?


CHELLA CHOI: I work with my father again (LAUGHS) so it’s 50% ok right? It’s so close, close every tournament so it’s a very good experience for me. My shots and my putting is much better and yesterday 10-under is my best score so it’s a really good memory in here.




Article from Ladies European Tour:
Published: 16/02/2014

© 2013 Ladies European Tour