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July 25, 2014

Graeme McDowell


Q.テつ Right here in the mix of the RBC Canadian Open, and for you, you got to see a group ahead of you, the fireworks from DeLaet and from Furyk.テつ You played very well on your own, as well.テつ What were the conditions like with such good scoring today?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ You know, the greens were pure this morning, getting out there first thing on a tournament morning.テつ The surfaces were perfect.テつ I could hear Jim and Graham up in front making some birdies, and I kind of got off to a nice start myself.テつ That back nine has been pretty kind to me the last couple days, and I took advantage again this morning.
But conditions are tricky.テつ The wind is really gusty.テつ One second it's not there at all, and the next second it's blowing 10, 15 miles an hour.テつ This is still a good test of golf.テつ You still have to hit it in the fairway.テつ Some great par‑4s coming in, and really happy to just kind of be in some kind of contention going into the weekend behind some great players.

Q.テつ Now that you've taken a couple trips around the course here, knowing your position roughly, what is it going to take for you, some of the key things this weekend that you'll need to win this golf tournament?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I've got to drive it well.テつ I've got to put it in play, and I've just got to keep my feels in and around the greens, chipping it well.テつ My bunker play is solid, and I'm seeing these greens well, so I just need to keep it simple, on the greens, make some putts, and hopefully come Sunday afternoon give myself a chance.

Q.テつ Great playing out there this morning.テつ You birdied 15, 16 and 18.テつ What did you do well in that stretch to get your round going?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I putted well.テつ I mean, to make birdies, typically you've got to roll the pill well, and I did that today.テつ Greens were really nice this morning.テつ The greens were receptive so you could be aggressive with your iron play.テつ I kept that up there today, and those last nine holes, I mean, I gave myself a ton of chances and couldn't get the thing in the hole.テつ But that's golf.テつ Just happy to be kind of in the mix, positioning myself, 36 holes left here, and right where I want to be.

Q.テつ How did you find the course today because it's dried out some, there's been a bit of wind and you played in the morning.
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Yeah, the wind was gusty.テつ It was definitely a factor.テつ It was anything from kind of three, four, five miles an hour right up to sort of 15 miles an hour at times out there, so you had to be really aware of what the wind was doing the second you were getting into the ball and try and commit to your shots.テつ Good test of golf out there.テつ Some great holes on this course, and like I say, greens remained fairly receptive this morning, but good drying conditions, and the course is only getting tougher.

Q.テつ You don't know where this is going to be, but 7‑under puts you in the thick of things.テつ You've got to be pretty comfortable with that.
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Yeah, Jim Furyk got off to a flier in front of me.テつ I was aware of that.テつ Quality player.テつ Kuchar was going well.テつ I know Graham DeLaet played well in front of us, as well.テつ If it's possible to feed off the group in front of you, I was kind of doing that a little bit, and some good players up there.テつ Like I say, 36 holes left, two solid rounds under my belt, right where I want to be, and come Sunday, hopefully we can have a chance.

Q.テつ 31 on the first nine.テつ That 34 on the back, you had a birdie on No.3.テつ I saw you on No.1 and you were a little bit short.テつ Was it because of the wind or was that simply because you didn't hit it like you wanted?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I didn't hit enough club off the tee on 1.テつ I've hit 3‑wood the last two days, left myself nearly 200 yards into that first hole.テつ I'm going to hit driver there this weekend, play a little bit more aggressive.テつ As long as you miss the first fairway right anywhere, you're okay going in there.テつ 1 was just the wrong club off the tee.テつ I had chances galore, sort of 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, chances all over the place.テつ I just didn't take many of them.テつ But we'll be back tomorrow.

Q.テつ Did you get your rest?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I slept great last night, I really did.テつ I felt a lot fresher this morning, let's put it that way.テつ The legs felt good.テつ I should only get stronger this weekend.

Q.テつ You're only three back.テつ Anything can happen tomorrow, right?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Absolutely.テつ 36 holes left, you know, three back.テつ I'll take that any week you ever want to tee it up.テつ I'll take three shots back into any weekend, anywhere, anyplace.

Q.テつ Nice day out there, bogey‑free.テつ How did it feel?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Yeah, good day today.テつ Like you say, nice to be bogey‑free anywhere in the world.テつ I hit it much better today, much more solid.テつ I had that last shot there to play a little bit‑‑ I hit a couple of squiffy looking ones there the last four or five holes last night.テつ I felt a little bit tired coming in.テつ I slept great last night, came out this morning refreshed and felt stronger out there today.テつ Really seeing the greens well.テつ You know, I felt like I hit a lot of good putts today.テつ I missed a few coming in.テつ I missed a few makeable opportunities there that last nine holes.テつ But all in all, sort of three or four back going in here to the weekend, I'm very happy with my start.

Q.テつ There's a few good low scores out there but some of the guys are still saying that it's pretty tricky, you have to kind of keep your attention?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Yeah, for sure, there's no doubt about it.テつ The course is‑‑ it's a long course in places.テつ There's holes like 11 and 4 and a couple of these par‑3s which are playing‑‑ leaving you second shots in the range of 220 and 230, a couple of par‑3s playing in the range of 220 and 230, so this course has got some length to it.
The greens are receptive, which is always a help.テつ I think when you're playing golf courses like this, on Rees Jones type greens where there's sections, guys that play well find the right sections and they can make birdies.テつ The guys that don't play well don't find the right sections, and this golf course is tough.
I feel like the good is really good here and the bad can be really punishing.テつ It's that kind of golf course.

Q.テつ What do you have to do this weekend to get yourself in the winner's circle?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I've just got to keep playing aggressively, find the fairways off the tee.テつ My iron play feels aggressive.テつ I've got to stay aggressive to these flags.テつ I'm chipping well, and I've just got to stay relaxed with the flat stick and really keep seeing these greens and not force it.
You know, I feel like this is the type of golf course where I can go post this weekend.

Q.テつ You talked about being aggressive.テつ If the conditions stay as soft as they are, how aggressive can you be going into the weekend?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ You know, it really is pin dependent.テつ Like I say, with these greens being in kind of sections, you just have to analyze where the flag is and how aggressive you can be.テつ My caddie is kind of‑‑ as we go around today, he's looking at tomorrow's pins knowing where I can and cannot miss it.
I generally feel like the more aggressive you are to these flags, short‑siding yourself generally is not too bad here.テつ The greens are soft, and you know, good iron shots really get rewarded here.

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