Sanderson Farms Championship

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Jackson, Mississippi, USA

Country Club of Jackson

Sam Burns

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: We would like to welcome Sam Burns to the virtual interview room here at the Sanderson Farms Championship. Sam, you're making your first start of the season and had a career best season you're following up on. Can you give us a recap of your season with your first win and making it to the TOUR Championship for the first time.

SAM BURNS: Yeah, I think overall it was a great year. I think coming into last year my main goal was to make it to the TOUR Championship, we were able to do that, so really just trying to kind of build on last year, kind of the things I did well, what I need to improve on, trying to find those areas and just trying to fine tune my game. So that's kind of the goal coming into this week and this year, just to continue to try and get better and improve in those areas and we'll see what happens.

THE MODERATOR: As you mentioned your first start to the season and from now and before until TOUR Championship were you able to get any time off and some rest and if so what were you up to.

SAM BURNS: Yeah, my clubs stayed in the carry case for about 10 days. So I pulled those out last week and just kind of practiced a little bit, just tried to recover my body after a long season and then just making sure and trying to prepare well for this week and making sure that we're ready to go.

THE MODERATOR: We'll open it up to questions.

Q. You said that making the TOUR Championship was your goal going into last season. What's your goal going into this season?

SAM BURNS: Same as last season.

Q. Okay. You talked about taking those incremental steps going up. You're ranked No. 25 in the world coming off your breakthrough season. What are some of the parts of your game that you think need that slight more improvement to keep ascending up the ladder?

SAM BURNS: I think really every kind of aspect of my game there's areas in there that I need to improve. My wedge play from 125 to 150 need to get better in that area. I want to lag putt it a little bit better. Some stuff around the greens I've been working on. So I think as competitors we're always trying to find little areas where we can improve, not necessarily drastic but just a little bit over a period of time makes a big difference out here.

Q. How much more confident are you going in this season than you were going into last season?

SAM BURNS: I think for me really it just stems from preparing well for each week. I think that's where I really try to focus in on is today and yesterday and Monday and just learning the golf course, how it's playing this week, what areas we need to kind of hone in on for this golf course. So every week's a little bit different, so I think for me just really focusing on that, that's the only thing that I can control.

Q. I understand that you played your Wednesday practice round with freshman Cohen Trolio. Can you kind of talk to us about what you see in his game and is there anything that you can pick up on with his style of play?

SAM BURNS: Yeah, Cohen and I played nine holes yesterday. First time I really got to spend time with him. I was really impressed with his game, but also just his maturity level for being 19. Just really impressive. Obviously he's a great player, I think he does a lot of things really well, drives it well, good iron player, he putted it nice. I think for him just coming out here this week, just trying to make sure that he just plays his game, doesn't try to do anything special, I think this is a great golf course for him, so I expect him to play well this week.

Q. We know we got the big LSU-Auburn matchup on Saturday night. Are you going to make time in the schedule to watch?

SAM BURNS: Oh, absolutely, we'll be tuning into that for sure.

Q. Your general thoughts on the course and how it suits you?

SAM BURNS: Yeah, this is one of my favorites all year. I think these are probably some of the best greens we play all year. I like the golf course, I like the Bermuda grass, similar to kind of what I grew up on home, kind of tree-lined fairways and so yeah I'm really excited. I don't know what the weather looks like, I think it's going to be okay, so I think the golf course will firm up, get firmer and faster and it will be a good test.

Q. I know you played well afterwards, but is there any lingering affects from the back injury that forced you out of the PGA Championship?

SAM BURNS: No, I think I've done a lot of stuff kind of in the few weeks we had off and then continued into this week and the rest of the fall to continue to get my body stronger and making sure that I'm moving well. So, yeah, body feels good, I feel healthy and excited to play.

THE MODERATOR: If you could just talk about the confidence from gaining that win and also led the TOUR in 36-hole co-leads and also tied for 54-hole co-leads, so what is the confidence of knowing that you can lead during a tournament?

SAM BURNS: I think for me it really it's trying to roll over what I've done in practice at home and what I do early in the week on to the golf course. I think it's probably the goal of a lot of players is to see what they have been working on kind of translate into the golf course and into competition. So I think for me just getting, having that experience of being in the lead and being around the lead is, you can't really create that without doing it. So I think that was really helpful to me, I learned a lot and by learning a lot I mean I think in those times I had a game plan kind of early in the week and I had gotten away from it a little bit on the weekend, so just making sure that I kind of stick to that and just try to play the golf course for what it's offering that day and just try to give it my best every day.

Q. Your tee time on Thursday, you're paired up with Sungjae immaterial and Corey Conners, I want to say. What is that like playing with two fellow, not fellow, but two Olympians?

SAM BURNS: Yeah, I'm excited, both those guys are great guys. I know Sungjae pretty well, we played on the Korn Ferry together and just see him a lot out here. Corey's a great guy, enjoy being around Corey. So, yeah, it will be fun, I'm excited to tee it up with those guys for a couple days and hopefully we play some good golf.

Q. Can you comment about the size and the strength of the field that we have this week?

SAM BURNS: Yeah, it's a great field. I think it's kind of like what Sergio said, when you get to play a quality golf course it attracts great players and this is one of those golf courses that's really good and makes you kind of think about certain holes and certain tee shots and shape it a little bit. So, yeah, I'm excited for the week.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
112881-1-1044 2021-09-29 15:11:00 GMT

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