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May 25, 2001

Paul McGinley


RODDY WILLIAMS: All right. Paul, very well played. Opening round of 66. A good start and then some fireworks just after the turn, as well.

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, that's exactly what it was. Solid start, fireworks and then solid finish. Let's go through the card first there. First, second, third, fourth hole, driver and 6-iron, 30 feet. Two putts. At 7, I chipped in from 20 feet just beside the pin from the fringe. 9, I hit a drive and a 9-iron to six feet. 11, 136-yard, I hit an iron, just fell in the hole. Next one, drive -- big, huge drive and a 6-iron, 30 feet. Two putts. Next one, I hit a drive and a 7-iron to ten feet. 15, I drove it in the rough. Terrible lie. Chipped it out 80 yards short of the green. 20 feet, two putts. Picked up a couple of bad lies on the last two holes. Little bit of a disappointing finish -- always to finish 5, 5, at Wentworth. I had a terrible lie off the tee on 18. I was lucky to make 5 and I had a terrible lie on my second shot into 17 just left of the green, buried. So that put me out of the equation. But, overall I've got to be very happy. 66 is a great start, again.

RODDY WILLIAMS: Shall we take some questions, please.

Q. How many first rounds have you been on top? Led or been on top?

PAUL McGINLEY: Did I lead in Belfry? Joint leader, yeah. I think that was the first. Maybe I might have led in Morocco, as well, after the first round, on my own. So, that's two. I'm not going to lead today. Cabrera will out score me. But it's something I've worked on a lot this year. It has not been something I've been good at in the past. It's happened for me this year. It's so important to get away to a good start because you're on the pace straightaway, and you can afford a couple of mistakes from then in because you're still on the pace. When you're behind, it's a lot more difficult. So, I'm very pleased to shoot a good, low first round. It's not something I do very often. I've done it now three times this year and I'm very pleased about it.

Q. Do you have to adjust your mindset when you go for the second round after a first round like this?

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, some guys, Michael Campbell followed with a 62 and 65 last week; he didn't find it difficult. It is, it's easy to shoot a 72, 73 the second round and fall off the pace again. The standards are so high. Last week I was second place going into the third round and shot 72 and went from second to 14th. Level par, you are going backwards at level par, so it is important to be on the pace.

Q. What is the secret to getting off to a good start? How have you convinced yourself that you can do it?

PAUL McGINLEY: Believe it or not I'm playing less aggressively starting out. Feeling my way into the course. Feeling my way into the course, the pace of the greens, the pace of -- you know, trying not to make mistakes early on; put myself on the back foot. Any time you start 4-3-4 at Wentworth, you've got to be happy, and I did that today. Obviously, the fourth hole you're looking at a birdie, only a 6-iron second shot and now I'm under par and you go -- fortunately, I had fireworks three holes today where things were great for me, and I played those three holes in 4-under par and that was the main part of my score. The rest of it was very solid.

Q. Did you think that you could catch Michael after two rounds last week? There was a quote I read, I wasn't there when you said it, but suggested that he had blown everybody away almost?

PAUL McGINLEY: No, no. You're never blowing anybody away after two rounds. But the standard is so high. The pace that he set straightaway -- he was never going to keep that pace up, but, you know, he had a huge advantage. What did he have, a six -, seven-shot lead? It's a big, big advantage. He would be disappointed to not to have won from that position, just like anybody would be. But no, I didn't throw in the towel. I certainly was trying to do was just keep a pace -- you know, I'm seven behind. Try to stay within five behind for the next round and try to get within two or three of the lead going into the last round, but it didn't happen that way. Sometimes you can, the theory is this : I want to do this, I want to do this, I want to do this; it doesn't happen, and other times it can go the other way. Like today, fireworks on three holes and all of the sudden you go from 2-under par to 6-under par and a steady round has turned into a great round.

Q. Is there a sense of disappointment, Paul, having been 7-under par after 13 and only finishing 6-under?

PAUL McGINLEY: A little bit. A little bit. I can't be too disappointed with 66 starting out, but, yeah, as I say, any time you finish 5, 5, you're disappointed, and that's what I did today. 15 is always a tough hole. The last six holes are playing into the wind. It's the toughest stretch on the course. Once you turn there at 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18 are all into the wind, and the rough is very penal. I found a couple of really tough lies on 15. I had a horrendous lie. Could only hit a pitching wedge out of it. Same on 18, I could only hit a 90-yard shot out of a bad lie. So there is a little tinge of disappointment, but overall, I'm very pleased 66.

Q. Did you see the ball go in on 11?

PAUL McGINLEY: No. I knew it was close, because I could hear the cheer behind was getting louder and louder and louder and was just a final gasp as it fell in. So it obviously fell in on it's last legs. Didn't sort of slam dunk like Tiger did.

Q. How is the injury, Paul?

PAUL McGINLEY: All right. I was on painkillers today. I was a little disappointed how it was today. It was sore today.

Q. Intercostal?

PAUL McGINLEY: Intercostal, yeah. I had to take some painkillers. It was sore this among. Something I didn't do for two days last week. I'll get some treatment on it. Now muscle spasms. Intercostal spasm, so it is quite tender and sore.

End of FastScripts....

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