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DUBAI DUTY FREE IRISH OPEN HOSTED BY THE RORY FOUNDATION


May 28, 2015


Graeme McDowell


NEWCASTLE, NORTHERN IRELAND

GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Playing in Asia.テつ This is it.テつ This is raw.テつ This is Britain and Ireland.テつ This is what it's all about, and it is fun to come back and play this type of golf.テつ You know, this is proper Open championship.テつ You know, you can put the grand stands up right now and have an Open championship here.テつ It's set up.テつ It's ready to go.テつ It's tough, and it's really going to require some good golf to win here this weekend.

Q.テつ What's par out there today?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ What's par out there?テつ Pretty difficult to tell, you know, because between the rain showers and between the sort of wind gusts, it's actually playable‑ish.テつ But you know, as the fronts roll through, it's very, very difficult.テつ I didn't realize this is a par 71 golf course, so I think anything, literally anything around par, one, 2‑over par is a really good score today.テつ It's really about not blowing yourself out of the golf tournament in these type of conditions and just try to hang in.
It leaves a sour taste, the three bogeys coming in, but I was pretty comfortable with what I was doing out there and happy enough, and I just gotta keep patient and keep doing it.

Q.テつ You got a bad break on the eighth tee.テつ It came at the wrong time.テつ You try to get yourself settled and just as you hit the ball, it stops?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Yeah, I know.テつ I could see the blue skies coming, you know, but in this game, you just can't stand there.テつ You can't stand there and wait for the weather to come through.テつ It's okay to back off when the odd gusts come through, but there's no reason to not stand there and hit the shot.テつ We're very aware of that as players.テつ I saw the blue skies coming, but it was my time to hit the golf ball, and I just had to try and hit it.
In fairness, I got quite lucky on 8.テつ I got a good lie, and I hit a great 7‑iron, and I knew the putt was fast, but it was a hell of a lot faster than I expected.テつ And like I say, my pace putting was great all day and just a little disappointing the last three, but maybe the toughest three holes on the course as well coming in.

Q.テつ Can you run us through the birdies?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ Yeah, I made a few, didn't I?テつ Yeah, 17, I hit a nice drive there just down short of the one of the few water hazards on this golf course, and I hit a really nice 9‑iron into about 8 feet, 10 feet, made that.
18, hit 3‑wood just short of the green in the left rough and had a pretty awkward lie, hit a pretty good little chop shot to about six feet and that with birdie.テつ And I hit 6‑iron just off the right of the first green and two‑putted just from the hole over there.テつ So those were nice.テつ Those were really, really nice.

Q.テつ Are you surprised to see Rory struggle?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I'm not surprised to see anybody struggle.テつ It's that tough out there.テつ I mean yes, Rory is an outstandingly special player, and I'm not surprised to see anyone struggling.
You know, like I say, with Rory's level of responsibilities this week, he can be let off the hook for maybe not having his 110 percent total focus this week.テつ You know, it's been a hard undertaking, and we thank him dearly because he's really elevated this tournament, and that's what it needed.
I'm sure he'll be back tomorrow and give it a good rip, but it was tough out there.

Q.テつ When is the last time you had a round like this, do you recall?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ It's been a while.テつ It's been a while because I want to say the Open championships, nothing's been this tough in a few years.テつ This is as tough as it's been in a long time in regards to strong winds.テつ You got three top 50 players in the world standing at 140‑yard par‑3.テつ I've not been able to sniff the green.テつ It was pretty tough.

Q.テつ What did you hit in there?
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ I had 8‑iron.テつ I mean I was trying to hit neutral and I just tugged that little.テつ I got lucky, but I couldn't get it up‑and‑down.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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