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COMMERCIAL BANK QATAR MASTERS


January 20, 2015


Justin Rose


DOHA, QATAR

NICK TOTTEN:  Welcome to Qatar, last week in Abu Dhabi,  better and better every day, how is the game feeling?
JUSTIN ROSE:  Yeah, absolutely, good to be back here.  2013 is the last time.
Yeah, looking forward to trying to get my head around this golf course.¬† It's not one that's been the kindest to me and been figuring it out the last couple of days.¬† It's been more so getting my lines hopefully off the tee, and I feel like there's a lot of run‑outs and carries, and really pick good lines on.
Yeah, been a good couple days work on the back of what turned out to be a good tournament last week momentum‑wise¬† definitely a little rusty, a little shaky with my game the first couples days.¬† Definitely Sunday I put together a good round, so it was nice to finish the tournament strongly.¬† And bogey‑free 65 is something that you can definitely feel a bit of confidence from.¬† Yeah, looking forward to taking that momentum into this week.
NICK TOTTEN:  What's the key to playing well in Qatar?
JUSTIN ROSE:¬† I think drive the ball well, the rough is quite thick and you get a lot of wind out here and a lot of crosswind.¬† Like I said there's a lot of angles, dog‑leg holes where you have to really pick a good line off the tee and put the ball into the fairway and from there, you can play any golf course pretty well.
The greens here, they have some amount of grain in them but I feel like I'm reading and putting the greens pretty well.  Hopefully just keep the long game up, and hopefully I can figure it out this year.
NICK TOTTEN:  Looks like it's going to be windy out there the first day; what are the keys to playing well in the wind?
JUSTIN ROSE:¬† Really good ball‑striking gets rewarded in the wind.¬† If you're a little bit off with your game, you lose one in the wind, you can be in big trouble out here.¬† There's a lot of sort of rocky outcrops that can get involved.¬† There's plenty of rough, too.
The fairways aren't that wide, so it's a tough course to play out of the rough.  Depending where they put the tees, the course is playing quite long, too, so definitely comes down to driving the ball well.
My goal is to keep the ball out of the wind as much as possible, keep the flight down and yeah, just play a solid first round, like last week, I think you're going to see some good scoring if the wind drops.
NICK TOTTEN:  And that's something you're comfortable with?
JUSTIN ROSE:  Yeah, I mean, typically, yes.  I enjoy the creativity of playing in the wind.  You need to create shots and especially when it's sort of a heavy wind like it has been the last couple days.  You can't just sort of hit your normal shots out there because if the ball does get too much, the wind bashes it.  Yeah, you always try to do something with the golf ball, which is fun.

Q.¬† I know you won early in your career‑‑ but generally early in the season are you a fast starter out of the blocks, or does it take you a few tournaments to sort of get in the groove?
JUSTIN ROSE:¬† It's been both at times.¬† I don't think there's been a real pattern as such.¬† I think it depends, really, on how your off‑season goes.
The last couple of years, last year, through injury I had a lot of weeks off, around ten weeks off, between the 2013 and 2014 season, and I thought ‑‑ (inaudible) ‑‑ I didn't take that much time off this time around, just four or five weeks off, in order to get up and running and tournament sharp and mentally sharp a little bit quicker.
You know, I think that definitely helped last week.¬† I mean, last week I just didn't play well but mentally, I really stuck with it and did well to make the cut‑‑ shouldn't have made the cut but did well to make the cut and turned a good result in from the way I played.
So mentally, I felt like I was a lot more with it earlier on than I was this time last year.  That was the thought process.  Year on year, you always try to learn from the previous year.  What happened ten, 12 years ago, I don't think is that relevant anymore.  You're always trying to figure out what happened last year, how did it make you feel and how you can be better the following year.

Q.  I believe you are playing with Stephen Gallacher and Charl Schwartzel.  Have you played a lot with both those players, and any thoughts on their form at the moment?
JUSTIN ROSE:¬† No idea‑‑ well, obviously Charl has put in a couple good weeks in South Africa and Abu Dhabi was pretty good again last week.¬† It's going to be fun to be with him.¬† His wife is on the bag again, who is actually my second cousin believe it or not.¬† Yeah, her father is my mom's cousin.¬† That will be fun, it will be a nice group.
And Stephen, yeah, I really enjoy his company, and a very good wind player.  So just try and follow his lead.

Q.  I asked Henrik about this this morning.  You've played a lot of tournaments in the Gulf area.  How have you seen the game grow in that time?
JUSTIN ROSE:¬† I've seen the fields get stronger and stronger.¬† I think players are coming‑‑ it's a place where players want to start their season.¬† I think they are such reliable tournaments from that perspective.¬† You always know what you are going to get down here.¬† You are going to get good golfing weather; you're going to get good course conditions.
That's a great asset for these tournaments to have.¬† That's a great reason‑‑ well, it's a big reason why I choose to start my schedule over here, based upon that reason.¬† There are less variables involved.
Obviously the weekends have been getting really nice atmospheres‑‑ Friday and Saturday here‑‑ but the turnout is great and there's quality sponsors in place and each tournament really feels like it's a big tournament now.¬† Yeah, it's been fun to watch.

Q.  What do you think of the major venues this year?
JUSTIN ROSE:¬† I think there's a ton of slope on all of those golf courses.¬† I think they are all relatively similar in that regard.¬† U.S. Open, I've never played Chambers Bay, but from what I've heard, it's going to be for of a links‑style test more than any other U.S. Open, a lot of shots running into greens, wider fairways I think.¬† But somewhat similar to Whistling Straits, as well.
So they have got that linksy feel on the water; I'm sure there will be a lot of fescue type grasses.  And then St. Andrews we all know the ball is on the ground, running, crazy bounces and humps.  So if you want to profile them, they are probably similar four courses as you're ever going to get in a lineup.

Q.¬† Four courses, I know you said you haven't ‑‑ inaudible ‑‑ the three venues, are you excited this year?
JUSTIN ROSE:  Any time you play the Home of Golf, St. Andrews, that's just one of the most fun Opens you can play.  I've played well there in the past and as an amateur, I won a big tournament there and finished second in the St. Andrews Links Trophy.  It's a venue that I feel comfortable at.
Augusta, I've always played well, so, again, I go there with confidence.  And Whistling Straits, I don't really have any reason to feel good or bad about that.
As a group of four, sure, fancy my chances around all of them.
NICK TOTTEN:  Thank you, Justin.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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