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August 19, 2005

Paul McGinley


Q. Paul McGinley has just signed his score card, he's in the house and in good position after 36 holes. First off, good to see you.

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, it's nice to be here, good being in town. I've enjoyed my last two days. The course is playing firm and fast and fiery, and that's the way I like it.

Q. What was the key to your success over these first two rounds?

PAUL McGINLEY: I played really well. I got a terrible start yesterday, I was 4 over par after nine holes, then a holed a few putts towards the end yesterday and gave me some momentum and I carried it over to today.

Q. When you were 4 over did you say, "oh, man, this is going to be a bad week, let me throw in the towel and just coast and get a check," but I don't think that's in Paul McGinley's makeup?

PAUL McGINLEY: I don't, I certainly don't hope so. I was mad as hell coming off that 9th green yesterday, I was hitting a sand wedge in and managed to make bogey.

But I knew it was four days, there was no cut this week, and I knew the way the course was playing, the scores would come back a little bit, and anything around par was a good score. Fortunately I managed to make a few birdies at the end to save that.

Q. Paul, how many putts did you have today, do you know?

PAUL McGINLEY: I don't know. I mean, probably not very many, but that's not a reflection because I hit a lot of fringes today. I mean, I don't know, I'll have to count them.

Q. You had about four birdies in five holes there on the front nine.


Q. Were they on long putts or what?

PAUL McGINLEY: You know, I'll give you my birdies if you want. I hit a par to 10, left it on the lip of the hole on 10.

Then 11, I holed it from about eight feet.

12, I holed it from 15 feet.

13, I holed it from 20 feet.

Then 16 I holed from 25 feet.

Then 2, I hit it in the middle of the green and two putts from 40 feet.

Then 3, I hit a sand wedge to about four feet.

Q. Were you off the green on the par 5?

PAUL McGINLEY: No, I was on the green.

Q. On the 10th hole did you say you hit a what club did you hit to the lip of the hole?

PAUL McGINLEY: I hit a 9 iron pin high left about 15 feet and left it on the high side of the hole. Just one more I was trying to breathe it in the hole it was that much hanging over the hole, and it didn't happen.

Q. You said on the last hole you three putted from 25 feet.

PAUL McGINLEY: No, last hole I hit it in the rough off the tee. I hit a good tee shot but anything in the middle of that fairway is kicking you have to pitch it about seven or eight yards of pitch to keep it in that fairway. I hacked it out short of the green too strong with a chip, went into the fringe, took two to get down from there.

Q. From how far?

PAUL McGINLEY: 25 feet.

Q. What do you think of the golf course?

PAUL McGINLEY: Same old story. I mean, if the rain comes like it's meant to, it'll be interesting to see how the scoring, how much it improves when the conditions are soft. It's firm and fiery and fast. It's playing short compared to Firestone, and yet the scoring is extremely moderate. Why somebody just doesn't get it into their head that the way to stop technology is not necessarily holding back the ball and not necessarily all the things that people are talking about. Let's find a way of drying out the golf courses and making the greens firm and fast and look at pin positions because you just have to look at the scoring.

It was good to read his website and something that having said that, I don't want to get too much into it, because at the end of the day I've got to compete and if it does turn and get wet, I don't want to get it in my head that I can't play on a long, wet golf course.

It didn't stand a test three years ago when Tiger shot 21 under, but it stands a test when it's firm and fiery like this with firm greens. Course management becomes a big factor. Length is important, but it's not a necessity. Ball control is important, keeping the ball below the pin is important, but when the greens are soft, like I played here in previous years when the greens were soft and you're firing it in and the ball is backing up all the time, it's reflected in the scoring in previous years.

Q. How does it feel to have the best round of the day?

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, it's good, but we'll see what happens at the end of the week, I'm not much concerned about one day.

Q. Is this as well as you've played here at this course?

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, I've had decent finishes before. This is as firm as I've ever seen the golf course. There's no question that there is a relationship between me playing well and the course playing firm and fast. Last week I was fortunate at Baltusrol that it stayed firm and fast all week and one of the reasons why I played well last week.

Q. How did you do at No. 16?

PAUL McGINLEY: Two birdies.

Q. How far do you think you're driving now with these conditions?

PAUL McGINLEY: Well, it depends. Uphill, downwind?

Q. Are you hitting the ball 300 yards?

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, I'm hitting it that far but everybody else is, too. It's firm and fast. The way the course is playing at the moment hitting it 300 yards is not a necessity. Hitting it in the fairway is a necessity. That's the way golf should be.

Even the guys who are hitting it in the rough have got a double whammy because if you've got a lie and they're able to get to the green, that's one thing, but then they've got to keep it on the green, and coming out of the rough with no spin, it's object

End of FastScripts.

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