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September 13, 2014

Justin Thomas


Q.  Talk a little about your day.  It was kind of an up‑and‑down day for pretty much everybody today.
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Yeah, it was just really difficult.  The pins were tough, it got really firm and really fast.
Obviously, the big wind made it tough, too.  That just made everything firmer.  I felt like I managed my game really well.  I got a couple unfortunate breaks that I felt like kind of cost me a couple bogies.  But I got a couple of good breaks that made up for it.
But overall, I'm pretty pleased and I'm happy to just be in contention come tomorrow.

Q.  What made things the most difficult today, just the pins?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Just the wind.  Any time you get 15 to 20 mile an hour wind and especially with these conditions, it's tough.
You just really have to control your flight.  And I think here because you have to play the bounces so much and the contours in the greens, you have to be in the right places.  It's just difficult to hit the shots you need to hit coming into the greens.

Q.  What holes did you feel you got a bad break on?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  On 2 I hit a decent tee shot.  It was just kind of on the right edge of the fairway and that tree that overhangs, I just drilled it and it went almost on the other course.  It just went behind a tree there and I couldn't do anything.  So I just had to chip out.  I wedged it on and made bogey.
But if that ball doesn't touch the tree I'm probably in the fairway, if not the edge of the rough and probably just have a wedge in.
And then on 11, the ball just rolled over the green and it was really an easy chip.  It was weird, it was a ‑‑ the patch of grass was really good, but, or the group of grass that was there.
But I just kind of got this patch and my ball just went right up against it.  It was unfortunate, but that stuff happens, it's golf, it's meant to happen that way sometimes.

Q.  How much affect did the wind, I mean club selection, you have to pretty much think on every shot?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  A hundred percent.  You couldn't take any shots off.  It was really difficult.  It was just, like I said, with having to worry about where it lands so much.
Sometimes have you two clubs, but if you're into the wind you couldn't be short sometimes, you would have to take two or three clubs more.  So it was just really difficult just to be committed to every shot.

Q.  What will you work on now?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Just the usual.  I just kind of do a little bit of everything.  I don't really grind much afterwards.
Especially with this wind.  It's tough to get a lot out of hitting balls.  But just hit some chips, just because it's‑‑ you need to chip well out here, because you're going to hit a lot of good shots that maybe just roll off the green.  So just go through my normal stuff.

Q.  You shoot 72, but you're still tied for the lead.  Obviously, that's kind of an anomaly on this TOUR.  Can you just talk about the day and what was tough about it and how you felt out there.
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Yeah, it was just really tough with the wind.  It was just a different test of golf I really had the whole year.
Even the TOUR events I played in, this was just, it was probably the toughest I've played.  You just really have to focus when there's no wind on where it's landing and where it's going to be and then you throw in a 10 to 20 mile an hour wind and it really gets tough.
But I felt like I managed my game well.  I was pretty bummed to not make that putt on 18.  That was the best hole I played the whole day.
But I'm tied for the lead.  I would have taken that before the day started.

Q.  Were there any moments in the round where you thought to yourself maybe trying to do too much and if you check back and say this is a tough course and I need to just make pars?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  No, I think that's why I faired as well as I did today.  I understood that there were pins you couldn't get close to and that par was a good score.
I think my caddie, Jason, and I‑‑ we really focused on getting on the right side of the hole and making sure we knew where the wind was.  And we just did everything like we should.
There was just a couple shots that I kind of got away from.  I didn't drive it maybe as well as I would have liked or that I had been, but I got it around pretty well.

Q.  With Derek struggling a little bit early, did that, did you look at that and think about that at all or were you able to just stay in your own game?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Not really, I figured because as soon as he started hitting greens again he would start making birdies.  He's such a good putter and his short game is so good and when he hits it well, he's really tough to keep up with.
He really didn't play that bad, he just kind of hit some bad drives.  But I knew that he could get it going at any time.  So I was just more focused on trying to give myself putts for birdies the rest of the day.

Q.  Are there any courses on this TOUR that you would say are as tough overall a tough a test as this or would this be No. 1?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  No, yeah, this is the toughest.

Q.  Is it difficult not to get frustrated playing this course?  At the end of the day you're tied for the lead, but you shot 1‑over.  How do you maintain your focus and everything?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Yeah, I just look at the scoring average.  I look at really good players that shot 76, 77 today and if I let my emotions get the best of me and I got careless on a couple shots, it easily could have been me.  I made some really, really good saves out there.  I left a couple out there, but I hit some great shots.
I was just smart and patient the whole day.  Although I would have liked to have been par or better, but it happened.

Q.  What's the mindset like going to tomorrow then?  Knowing the course is tough, but would you try to learn from the things you did today?
JUSTIN THOMAS:  Yeah, that's the thing, I don't know how it's going to play tomorrow.  I don't know if it's going to be this windy.  I think it's a different wind direction tomorrow, coming back to what it was in the practice rounds and it's probably not going to be this cold either, but you just don't know.  I don't know what the guys in front of me or behind me are going to do, but I just got to focus on trying to hit fairways and give myself 18 birdie chances tomorrow.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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