Laura, welcome. How is your experience of Holland?
I like it so far. The course is great and the weather is beautiful. I’m looking forward to a good week. I’ve got a great pairing tomorrow, playing with Christel and Becky Brewerton so it will be good.
Have you played this course before?
No. It’s the first time that I’ve seen it and it’s very good. The back nine is a lot harder than the front nine, I think, which is what most courses are like, probably. There’s a big difference between the front and the back here.
What about the condition of the course?
It’s great. The first thing that you could see when we played number one yesterday was the nicely manicured fairways and the big dog leg round to the left. The greens are very nice. They still look like they’ve a bit of water in them but hopefully they will dry out during the week. They are a nice surface, so it’s good.
Is this a course that suits your game?
I think it does suit longer hitters because you can take a few more chances on the wide open holes and then the longer holes on the back nine like 10, 11, 12, the length might be a bit of an advantage. There are some really tough second shots and some tough drives too.
You’ve had a great season with two wins already.
Yes, that was nice to get that early win in New Zealand. It really takes the pressure off because you love to win a tournament, at least one every year, which is nice. Then Germany, I played really well, had a great weekend, ten under, and unlucky last week because the rain, I think, on Saturday affected me more than others. It shouldn’t have done because I’m used to playing in the rain but it didn’t work out. I shot four over in Saturday but at least came back with a good finish on Sunday.
Do you feel your game is improving this year to last year? Is there something you found?
Just confidence. My game has always been about confidence. If I’m confident, I normally do well. If I let the gremlins get in the head then I’m sometimes not very good at getting rid of them and I see bad shots rather than good shots and that’s a disaster for a player.
Does it depend on what course you play on as well, when you get on the first tee?
Exactly. There are courses that this year I normally would have gone and played but because I know I don’t like them I’m steering clear of them. I’m just going to play courses that I feel comfortable on.
What do you think about the players that are going home, having kids and leaving the tour behind them?
I know. Lorena is going to do that, Annika, two years ago she gave up and they’ve got other things they want to do with their life and move on. It’s a shame for the Tour but it’s great for them because they’ve achieved so much and they’ve got nothing left to prove.
Do you have any goals set for the next couple of years?
I just want to win lots of tournaments. I’d like to win another Major, would be great. Just a lot of tournaments and show more consistency because the last four or five years I’ve had some really good runs but some really bad runs and I want to keep the really good runs but when it’s not quite so good I don’t want to be a poor player, or just average. That would be my biggest goal: to be more consistent.
Do you play most of your tournaments on the European Tour now?
No: in America. This year the schedule’s so bad in America that, I say bad, but difficult is a better word than bad, because the start of the year we had some tournaments in Asia that not everybody gets in. I played two full field events this year in America and we’re already in June. After this week in Holland I will go and play four weeks in America so I’m really looking forward to that. After the British Open, Irish and Welsh, then I finish the year off in America.
What do you think about the Hall of Fame, where you somehow don’t have enough points to get in?
No, I don’t. You’ve got to have enough points and I’m two points short. Its one Major or two regular tour events so if I could do that in the next two or three years that would be a goal as well.
Tell me something about the Dutch players. Have you played with Christel?
I’ve played with Christel a couple of times. She’s impressive: very steady, hits a lot of fairways and has a really good short game. Very, very good from 100, 80, 70 yards in, she’s very accurate, which most of the players are really. I’m probably one of the worst from that distance. Most of the girls are very solid and she’s certainly very solid. She putts well, a big future I’d say. She’s already won a tournament: big future.
Marjet: have you played with her?
I can’t remember. I don’t want to sound rude but I don’t want to say either way. I don’t really know her that well: I know Christel better.
What are your goals for this week?
Well, to try and win. That’s why we’re here. I obviously want to have a chance on Sunday morning. That’s the line I always use. If I wake up Sunday and feel like I have a chance to win then its job done. Whether you win or not is in the lap of the Gods. You need luck; you need things going your way. Certainly to have a chance Sunday morning and be within three or four shots would be good.
Marjet van der Graaff
This is your home course. How does it feel to be playing at home?
It’s very good. I can stay at home and this is the course where I normally practise and now I’m here and it’s like a big tournament so it’s fantastic.
How important will that home advantage be?
I don’t know. I know the course well and it’s where I always practise. I’ve played a lot of rounds on this course and I know where I can miss it and where I can make my birdies so we’ll see.
What are your favourite holes?
I think 18 is my favourite hole. It’s a good finishing hole where you can make a good birdie. It’s hard to tell. I like all the holes, pretty much.
You’re a long hitter. How much will that help you on this golf course?
I think if the set up stays like it is now, it plays long, so that will help me.
How excited are you to be playing in front of the home crowd?
I’m really excited. It’s very nice and people can finally see me play and how I’m doing the whole year.
What are your hopes?
I hope I’m going to win, of course. That’s my biggest hope.
Do you feel you’re playing well enough?
I’m playing alright. You can always do better but it’s not too bad.
Who do you see as your biggest challengers?
I think Laura is playing great golf. It’s a great golf course for her as well and I think she’s got a big chance. Mel Reid is playing good as well. There are so many good players.
What do you think the winning score will be?
It depends on the wind but I think maybe around minus 10, minus 15 with good weather.
What is the most important aspect of the game here?
I think the putting. If you can hole your putts on this course you’re going to be there, more or less.
Will you feel any extra pressure as the home player?
Not really at the moment but maybe tomorrow, we’ll see.
How does it feel to be here in the Netherlands?
It feels great. To be able to play for your home country and audience is very nice. I’m excited to play. The course is great and in good condition so it should be very nice.
How do you rate your game coming in here?
It’s getting better. Two weeks ago I got sick and had pretty bad flu and last week physically I wasn’t fit so this week is a lot better. I’ve been working with my coaches a little bit on my swing so hopefully it should all be good.
What are your expectations here?
I don’t know yet. It’s going to be the same as every week: try to win and to play my best and we’ll see what happens.
What will be the most important aspect of your game on this course?
It is set up a bit longer than normal so you have to hit the fairways because out of the rough it’s going to be a bit tough. The greens are quite big so you need to have good distance control.
You have a lot of friends and family. Will that be a help or a hinder?
It will be a help. It’s nice that you have people that support you and come see you. It will be nice.
What will be the ideal score on Sunday evening?
I don’t know; we’ll see what happens. I’ll just do my best every day and see what happens.