Interview with Darren Clarke after his second round in the Deutsche Bank -SAP Open TPC of Europe

Q: If you got the putter hot, you are going to be dangerous.
A: I was frustrated on the course yesterday, and same thing today.  7 under is about as bad as it could possibly be for two rounds.

Q: How good could it  have been?
A:   An awful lot better.  But at least today, I had a lot more putts that were going at the holes, but still managed to dodge and swerve.

Q: Is that going to be the plan now for the rest of the week to try and get that aspect sorted?
A: I'm very happy with what I'm doing from tee to green and how I'm striking it.I just need a few more putts to drop

Q.  How long did you spend on the practice putting green last night?
A:  About an hour and 50 minutes, something like that with Thomas Bjorn and Ewen Murray.

Q:  Yesterday you went several holes without holing a putt, you said you had two putts for 12 or 13 consecutive greens; you must have holed a few today to improve.
A: I tell you what  let me think where they were.  The first, the 10th hole was my first hole, and I holed it from six feet, a little dance around the green, so that was all right.  Then my next birdie was on the 16th; I holed it from about 15 feet for birdie.  And I 2 putted from the front edge on 17.  And then the par  5, I had a 2 putt I was just off the green in two and 2 putt from 25 feet there.  On the eighth hole, I had a wedge to a foot.

Q.  If 15 feet is the longest you holed over the two days, so is there something the matter with your putting, are you putting badly?
A: I was striking the putts very poorly yesterday, while today I was striking them a lot better but didn't seem to make any difference, so hopefully it will do over the weekend.

Q.  What's the answer to the question?
A:   The answer is patience, which is certainly not one of my virtues, as you well know.  But if I keep hitting good putts, hopefully they are going to start going in, and today I hit a lot of good putts.

Q.  Did the two guys you talked to offer a different perspective on what you were doing wrong or were they saying essentially the same thing?
A:   Essentially the same thing, but in a different way.  I was coming out of my putts, which my head was moving and that was causing me to come up this way.  So that's what I'll do.

Q.  And how many good chances today did you miss?
A:   A lot.  I don't know.  I had a lot of chances today.

Q.  Did you change your putter today like you did last week?
A:   Yeah, wanted to break the other one.

Q.  Given that you no longer have got a belly to rest it against, what is your take on the belly putter?
A:   I don't use one and I don't really have a take on it.  I used it for a couple of weeks and found it very helpful.  At the moment, no plans, unless this weekend.  I might go back to it.

Q.  The R&A; said yesterday that the belly putter seemed to give an advantage, whereas they didn't think that the long putter did, and that's reopened the debate.
A:   See, I'm not privy to such information as that.  A lot of people who do use it putt very well.  So you know, I don't know what they are going to do to try and ban it.  I'm sure they are going to see if there's opposition for it, but they make rules and we have to live with it.

Q.  Which side of the fence would you be?
A:   At the end of the day, you still need to make a good stroke to hole the putt, so I don't think it makes a difference what you're using.  I can miss them just as easy with a belly one as I can with a short one.

Q.  Where are you now at the halfway stage, have you got the game good enough to win it?
DARREN CLARKE:   I've definitely got the game where I can get myself into contention, but my putting has to improve.  If I am going to have a realistic chance of winning, that's as straight as I can put it.  Tee to green I'm very happy with what I'm doing.

Press Archive - Golf
21st May 2004 -Interview with Darren Clarke after his second round in the Deutsche Bank -SAP Open TPC of Europe
7th May 2004 - Interview with Lee Westwood after Second Round
6th May 2004 - Howell's Views on First Round Lead
30th April 2004 - What's on at The Daily Telegraph Damovo British Masters
25th April 2004 - DJ Spoony tees up to launch year two of Golf Roots
11th March 2004 - Clarke and Westwood to tee up in The Daily Telegraph Damovo British Masters
9th February 2004 - Signing for Collingtree Park is Simple for Simon
3rd February 2004 - Darren's Got Designs on Moyvalley Golf Resort
17th January 2004 - England Stars Join ISM Team
13th January 2004 - Things Go Better for Kids with Westwood and Coca-Cola
25th November 2003  Clarke Finds Heaven in Mossel Bay
14th October 2003 - Walker Cup Star, Manley, Joins the Winning ISM Stable
3rd October 2003 - Wardrop Joins the Winning ISM Stable
30th September 2003 - The Only Way is Up for Westwood
22nd September 2003 - Clarke Wins at Clandeboye
17th September 2003 - Lee Westwood Interview
22nd August 2003 - Darren Clarke Foundation
8th August 2003 - Another Top 10 Hit For Coltart

28th July 2003 - Westwood Continues Climbs To Top
11th June 2003 - Gaylord, ISM and AJB Sports Form Worldwide Partnership
17th March 2003 - THE BRITISH MASTERS