Sanderson Farms Championship

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Jackson, Mississippi, USA

Country Club of Jackson

Sahith Theegala

Quick Quotes

Q. Here for your third start at the Sanderson Farms Championship. If we can get some comments what this tournament means to you. Obviously last year was a special week for you, didn't quite get it done, but your thoughts on being back.

SAHITH THEEGALA: Yeah, I love being back here. I made it a point in the fall schedule to definitely be back here. One of the first events that I got a spot into. I can't thank Steve Jent enough, tournament director, for giving me a spot when I had no status or anything, so that was cool.

Then last year, obviously, like you said, really special week for me because it was my first time on the PGA TOUR being in any sort of contention, and having the lead, and just the atmosphere was really cool.

A lot of good memories being back here.

Q. What do you remember most about that, having a share of the lead the first three rounds. What will you take from that tournament going forward?

SAHITH THEEGALA: Yeah, just so many positives. I played so well here. It was honestly a course, my first year I missed the cut but only made two bogeys, I think, the first two days, and I was like, okay, I can work with that. Even though I missed the cut, I was like, we can do well out here, I think.

Last year I just got off to a hot start. These greens might be some of the best greens on TOUR, if not the best greens on TOUR. They're running 13s already and they're glass and so pure.

I feel like I see the lines on the putts really well, and there's a lot of cut shots off the tee, which I pretty much only play.

The combination of that just makes me feel really comfortable.

I love if you get it going wrong, you can go really wrong, but if you're playing well, you can also go the other way. I think it's just a great combination of that.

Q. And you're coming in in good form, a tie for sixth in Napa. Talk a little bit about the state of your game.

SAHITH THEEGALA: Yeah, game is feeling really good. I haven't been practicing a ton, just taking it a little bit easier since last year's kind of mega season that I played almost. Got a really good week's worth of prep this week. I was down in Houston, same grasses and similar conditions, so coming out here I feel really comfortable, and the game feels really good. I have my swing coach out with me, Rick Connor, which I don't have him out too much, so we're getting things tiled in already.

I just feel really comfortable. I think that's the main thing. No matter what my game brings, I'm not too worried about it. I'm just happy to be here.

Q. What are some of the things you're dialing in with your coach on your swing?

SAHITH THEEGALA: The two main things, I'm always trying to dial in driver. Last year it's one of the reasons I played so well, I was pretty much zero on strokes gained off the tee, which was a huge bonus for me. We're just trying to figure out -- because luckily I feel like I'm decently long enough where I don't have to really go after it to hit it 300, but we're just trying to figure out how to hit as many fairways and possible and just dial in the wedge game a little bit more, too.

It's great with him because it's never swing -- it's never really swing stuff. It's a lot of like just rhythm stuff, tempo stuff, feels. It's awesome having him out. But definitely working on the big stick.

Q. How long have you worked with him for?

SAHITH THEEGALA: Since I was seven, so how old am I now? 17 years now. Going on 18. Yeah, for my whole life. He knows my game better than I do.

Q. What's your talk with him in general week to week when he's not on the road? Do you send videos?

SAHITH THEEGALA: We just chat. He's more of like a mentor to me, honestly. We've been through a lot, and I don't see him very often, which is almost a good thing in terms of when we do see each other, we get right to work. We don't mess around. We'll catch up and stuff, but we get right to work.

It's almost I feel like going a longer period of time, he knows -- he can see what's actually different with my swing or different with my feels and stuff like that.

He's always been -- every time he's been out this last year, it's gone pretty well. Whether the results were there or not, my swing and game has felt good. Hopefully it happens again this week.

Q. Thinking back to last year here, how much has changed for you? Do you feel different in any way than you did a year ago?

SAHITH THEEGALA: Yeah, definitely. I'm still a little -- I don't think I'm ever not going to be nervous -- I'm still a little nervous. It's the start of the season, everyone wants to play well in the fall to kind of set themselves up for the spring. But like I mentioned earlier, I'm just a little bit more comfortable. I'm more comfortable just kind of being myself out here, not trying to copy other guys or trying to be like other guys or play like other guys.

Mostly because knowing that my good golf is good enough to be on the PGA TOUR, and I think just having that in the back of my mind, it frees me up a lot more, but also last year was a really incredible year. I had very little expectations last year, and this year I have even less expectations because I don't even have the expectations of keeping my card because luckily I got two years from TOUR Championship.

Yeah, I'm about as free as I can be right now I'd say.

Q. Is there anything you would tell yourself if you could talk to yourself a year ago about what to expect this year and any advice you would give him?

SAHITH THEEGALA: Yeah, just to maybe take a little bit more time just to myself. I've always been kind of an introverted person. The support has been incredible. I think going on, I'm going to do a better job of those off weeks. I mean more specifically those off weeks, just kind of resting, see my family and friends and stuff like that.

The golf stuff takes care of itself because I've been loving Max Homa's interviews recently talking about how much he puts in so much hard work, and the great thing is he acknowledges that a lot of guys put in as much hard work as he does, and he mentioned that at the Presidents Cup, and I thought that was so cool. You don't need to say -- everyone works really hard. It's just about -- it's the little things that matter a lot. I think that kind of resonated with me. As long as I keep putting in the work, can't really push for the results or anything like that. Can't worry about it. Just kind of let the process take over.

Q. What are a couple of those little things that you think are important for you that keep you pushing forward?

SAHITH THEEGALA: Yeah, I just love the game. I think first and foremost, I just love the game, and just trying to be aware of how lucky and the opportunity that I have being on the PGA TOUR and playing in front of so many people and having a chance to inspire and obviously making a great living from that, as well. So just like a combination of that and just wanting to be the best version of myself and keep getting better because one of the things I tell Carl all the time, my caddie, is man, I have so much room for improvement. So just kind of proving it to myself that I'm going to keep pushing until I see improvement, and I think that's just going to keep fueling my love for the game, too.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
125228-1-1002 2022-09-27 22:06:00 GMT

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