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March 18, 2005

Graeme McDowell


Q. I'm not sure we've ever had back-to-back Irishmen win on the PGA TOUR.

GRAEME McDOWELL: A bit of a first I guess. Padraig did unbelievable last week. Gives us all hope really. He's a great champion. A repeat would be awesome.

Q. Scores are not extremely low here, so imagine, I actually heard you say, "very pleased with 3-under."

GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, I think 3-under is a good golf score out here any day of the week. The course being a little soft, some of the guys were thinking scoring would be better but it's playing long. It's not the warmest, not exactly Florida heat here today. I think we have a great weekend in front of us.

Q. Were you able to play rested knowing you watched UAB play?

GRAEME McDOWELL: Watched the first half of that game and get to bed. That was a nice upset for the boys. I was pumped when I heard the score this morning.

Q. Talk about yesterday where you were obviously playing pretty well and then today how different was it?

GRAEME McDOWELL: Very difficult. I struggled with my rhythm early on this morning. I hit some interesting strikes. The ball would not go very far; it was cold. It was just playing long.

I was happy to scramble. My short game was in good shape, I hit some good chips to keep me in it, and when it warmed up about five degrees, I was able to make some swings and birdies coming in.

Q. How important is it for you to get good starts under your belt when you play in PGA TOUR events?

GRAEME McDOWELL: It's very important to me. I would love to get my seven starts out here and obviously I have some majors and World Golf Championships and events like this one. I want to make an impact because I see my future more on this side of the Atlantic, and I feel like this is where the best guys in the world are and that's where I want to be.

Q. Trying to get back in the Top-50 for next week, is that a big goal for you, back of the mind?

GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, I've been driving toward this since about the start of December. It's going to be a big weight off my mind if it what happens or when it doesn't happen. I think I'm a lot more focused on this week which is good. It's been difficult to live my life in the future looking towards Sawgrass and the Masters and World Rankings and what's going to happen losing points here there and everywhere.

It's difficult. I just want to get back to focusing on golf tournaments and winning golf tournaments instead of focusing on things you can't control like the World Rankings.

Q. Must have been difficult playing the twoball.

GRAEME McDOWELL: We had a bit of a wait on 7 tee and we were waiting on 10 tee. It was tough to get my kind of rhythm going. My short game kept me in it when it was cold and when I hit it up I started to play a little better and could I get back on my game again. So I'm looking forward to practicing this afternoon and getting ready for the weekend really, start the golf tournament proper really tomorrow, I feel.

End of FastScripts.

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