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July 25, 2015

David Hearn


THE MODERATOR: David Hearn, 4-under 68 today, puts you in prime position right at the top of the leaderboard after three rounds of the RBC Canadian Open. Obviously a special day, special week for you. Just some thoughts on how you're feeling before you head into the final round tomorrow.

DAVID HEARN: Thanks very much. I played real solid today. And I couldn't be happier with where my game's at right now. Getting on to that first tee today the ovation I received was something I'll remember for a very long time. Hit a great tee shot and I felt very in control of my game all day. And it was so much fun to play in front of these hometown crowds. They were just amazing to play in front of. Like I say, something I'll always remember. I'm sure it will be to the same level, if not more tomorrow. But every green we walked onto, people cheering me on. And it was a lot of fun to play today and I kind of fed off that energy for sure. And I obviously played well, and I'd like to have finished a little bit better today, but overall I'm very happy with where my game's at, and I'm excited about tomorrow.


Q. As well as you played, it looked like the driver went awry sort of in the middle of the round. It looked like you were thinking your way around the golf course so well. Is that because of your position in the tournament, or is that just something that's been improving this year, especially?
DAVID HEARN: I'm playing with a tremendous amount of confidence right now. And my iron play is so solid that I'm not really getting too down on myself over little misses off the tee. I actually felt like I drove it okay today. We had a lot more crosswinds today than we've had. The wind was a bit more southerly today, so some of those holes the wind was straight across and it was hard to keep the ball in the fairway today, I felt. I was missing them a little bit left, I guess. But on 16 I missed one just left there but that's exactly where you want to be. You can't really go to that pin anyway. And then 18 I hit a great tee shot. So I actually feel like -- it might not have looked as good maybe from the outside, but I was making good swings and I was hitting some solid drives.

Q. What are your thoughts about playing with Bubba tomorrow in the final pairing?
DAVID HEARN: I've played with Bubba before. It's been a long time. You know, if there's one player on tour that plays an entirely different game than everyone else it's probably him. So it's probably going to be very good for me, actually, because it will keep me focused on playing my own became no matter what. Like if I played with another player like even playing with Johnson today, we play similar types of games. So we can kind of feed off the way we're playing a little bit. But with Bubba, I'm just really going to have to focus on just playing my own game. And he plays a game with which nobody else on this tour is familiar. He hits the ball incredibly long and hits some shots that most players don't try to attempt. So it will be fun. And I know the crowds will be big with Bubba and myself in that final group. So it will be a lot of fun. Hopefully I'll make some birdies and David will beat Goliath I guess.

Q. On 11 the drive went left, and you looked at it a fair bit. It looked like it wasn't much of a decision to chip it out as opposed to try to dump it in the bunker. Is this what you're talking about, when you were talking about your irons are so sharp, it's not worth the risk, you just play a little safer?
DAVID HEARN: There again, I hit a pretty nice tee shot. The wind doesn't really catch it. Sometimes when you hit it solid the wind doesn't move it. And that's kind of what happened there. So I got down there and I had to take a drop from the path. I was hoping to get, like, a miracle lie, that I might be able to hit a shot onto the green or something like that. Probably better that it didn't happen in the end anyway because I made a great par save there and kept my round going. So, you're right, when those sort of decisions came up today, I know I'm not going to play a perfect round of golf and I won't play a perfect round of golf tomorrow. But if I can keep giving myself good chances and make more birdies than bogeys, I feel I'll be in a good spot to contend on 18.

Q. Jason Day, Bubba Watson, Jim Furyk, the game's biggest names are a shot or two behind you. How do you deal with that tonight, or do you even bother thinking about -- just think I'm going to have to go out and play the same game you did today and just sort of whatever you do and however they hang it, doesn't make any difference?
DAVID HEARN: Essentially what anybody else does it boils down to me. I still have to go out there tomorrow and perform. And I still have to go out and hit good shots and make some birdies. I know 15-under is not going to win this golf tournament. I have to go out tomorrow and play a good round of golf. Doesn't really matter what names are where or who is doing what. I just have to focus on my own game. If I can keep playing the way I have these first three days, you know, I really like my chances.

Q. Just a thought on tonight, what's your plan? Do you kind of shut your phone off? The whole country is going to be wishing you well?
DAVID HEARN: I hope the whole country doesn't have my phone number. (Laughter) Yeah, I'll probably try to take it easy, grab a quick meal once we're done with all the media stuff. I'll try to get a good night's rest. Late tee time, you have a lot of time between waking up and getting to that first tee. So the better idea of getting a good night's sleep tonight. And I'll probably come out to the course a little bit early tomorrow and just sort of get loose and get ready and get ready for it all. I've gotten pretty good at it over the years. And being in contention, like a few times before of handling the sort of Saturday night pressure. So that's something I think with experience I've gotten better at.

Q. Did you know that Jason Day had put it in the water on 11 from roughly the same position?
DAVID HEARN: I had no idea, no.

Q. Was there any other decision, was there any other possibility, maybe knocking to the bunker on the right?
DAVID HEARN: No, there really wasn't. When I took the drop, the lie just wasn't going to dictate me getting it up fast enough. I had 100 -- I think I had 110 yards to the pin. I would have had to hit lob wedge, and my lob wedge goes 95, 100 yards. So, there's no way that I could have doctored a shot to feel safe and get it close to the green even. So I had to try to make par and bogey at worst.

Q. How much pressure do you think there will be on your shoulders when you tee it up tomorrow? And are you looking forward to that, embracing it?
DAVID HEARN: I'm looking forward to embracing it. It's something you dream of obviously, being Canadian, to be in the final group leading this golf tournament. It's a position that I played my whole career and you work towards something like that. I'm excited about that opportunity. I feel very good about my game and where it's at. I feel like I'm ready to step up to the challenge. I was real close a couple of weeks ago at Greenbriar. I played real solid there in the playoff. And it just didn't turn out my way. So I feel like, yeah, there will be pressure out there, but there's pressure to win any tournament on the PGA TOUR. And like I said today, I'm just going to do my best job embracing the fans and using that energy that they gave me today to help push me forward. I think I did a good job of that today.

Q. David, specifically what did you take away from the Greenbriar playoff and the John Deere one two years ago?
DAVID HEARN: Well, especially the Greenbriar just a few weeks ago, how much fun it can be to be in contention, to hit shots that mean a lot and count most. So I'm very fortunate to be back in that position so quickly this time. And when I got into the playoff with the John Deere I felt like I was going to be in that position a lot sooner than I was. So I'm excited about my opportunity tomorrow. And I'm looking forward to it and I'd like to have a putt to win this golf tournament on the last hole.
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