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FRIDAY A.M. FOURSOMES: ROBERT KARLSSON, HENRIK STENSON, PAUL CASEY
KELLY ELBIN: European Ryder Cup Team members, Robert Karlsson, Henrik Stenson and Paul Casey joining us after the foursomes matches on the first day of the 37th Ryder Cup. Robert and Padraig Harrington halved their match with Phil Mickelson and Anthony Kim; Henrik and Paul Casey lost 3 & 2 to Justin Leonard and Hunter Mahan.
Let's open up with some general comments. Robert, first, some comments about your match that went down to the 18th hole.
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yeah, we got a half a point against a very strong team, but obviously we were 3 up with six to go, so obviously it's not perfect. But I mean, at the end of the day, we got a halve. We were under pressure the last few holes, so at the end of the day, it wasn't too bad.
KELLY ELBIN: Henrik, comments from you and Paul in regards to your match, please.
HENRIK STENSON: We got off to a great start and were 2 up early and they threw three straight birdies at us and I think it wasn't until the 9th hole that we halved one, so it was a bit back and forth there. They played great and we didn't play as good. So nothing much to say about it really.
PAUL CASEY: I think Henrik nailed it.
Q. Just a general thing, how do you feel about 3 1 at this stage, as a generic thing for the whole team, please.
PAUL CASEY: It's still very, very close. It's only a couple of points, isn't it, you know, halfway through the first day. No, I think we are very fired up for this afternoon and we have some great pairings. The guys are looking forward to getting out there this afternoon.
Q. Could all three of you talk a little bit about the atmosphere and the crowd today?
HENRIK STENSON: It was good out there. It was, I don't know, ten percent on our side and 90 on the other but it felt almost like 50/50 in the sound at one stage. They are doing a good job for us, the Europeans that are over. No, it was a good atmosphere to play in.
ROBERT KARLSSON: For us, as well, it was great. If you're playing with probably the most supported non home player, playing with Mickelson obviously, but it was a good atmosphere. There wasn't any bad stuff going on out there, so it was great.
PAUL CASEY: I agree. I think I saw five leprechauns and a matador. I saw Monty out there, as well, in a kilt (laughter). No, it was great fun. I didn't know five leprechauns and a matador could be so loud, but it was highly entertaining.
KELLY ELBIN: Talk for a second about the setup of the golf course today. Any different than what you saw in the practice rounds, anything that surprised you at all?
ROBERT KARLSSON: For us there was a couple of tees that were up a bit more than were expected, especially No. 2. 18 was quite a bit different, as well.
It was a good setup for foursomes. It was possible to make birdies and the greens were in great shape and everything was good.
PAUL CASEY: I think the course has actually improved as the week's gone on. You know, with the greens being re laid, what, a year or two years ago or whatever.
KELLY ELBIN: Within the last two years.
PAUL CASEY: The best way of putting it, they have just got better. So you have a very good golf course now that you can roll putts on well and they stay fairly true, apart from the one that slipped by on 13.
So it's a great setup. It's not, should I say, the golf course and the setup and the condition of it is not going to be a factor, because it's in very good condition now.
Q. With regard to the afternoon pairings, how disappointed are you not to be involved, and how much was Nick's decision influenced by what happened towards the end of this morning's foursomes matches?
PAUL CASEY: Sorry, I lost you. What am I towards this afternoon?
Q. Are you disappointed not playing this afternoon and was it influenced by what was going on; how much did what happened late in the morning round cause Nick to change his mind, if at all?
HENRIK STENSON: You'll have to ask him about that.
PAUL CASEY: Yeah, your second question I can't answer. Henrik and I were too busy trying to claw holes back on Justin and Hunter.
The first part, am I disappointed? It's Nick's decision. So I'm going to do everything I can to assist the team. You know, I was prepared to play all five matches, and if it's the case that I only end up playing two matches this week, then I'm fine with that, as well.
You know, I can't let my ego get in the way of helping this team play as well as they can.
Q. Robert, could you do what Paul did, please, in looking at the overall situation for us?
ROBERT KARLSSON: Yeah, obviously it's a bit unusual for The European Team to be behind. But it's a new challenge. I guess it's just for us now to rise to that challenge and see what we can do to turn it around as quick as possible.
KELLY ELBIN: Gentlemen, thank you very much.
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