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September 4, 2015

Ian Poulter

Norton, Massachusetts

IAN POULTER: It looks quite nice. No bogeys on the card, which is obviously quite nice. Made a few birdies. It's my first look at the golf course this week. It's kind of strange sometimes when you're a bit frustrated with the game of golf and you take yourself away and say I'm not playing a Pro Am, I'm not playing a practice round. I'm not going to look at the course and tee off on the first and see how we go. And I shot 67.

Q. Today was the first time you saw the course this week?
IAN POULTER: Yes, it was the first time I've walked on the course.

Q. How many times have you ever done that in your career, shot 4-under 67?
IAN POULTER: Well, I played three others at Akron this year, I played 1, 2 and 3 and got off to a lovely start, as well. I'm hoping the trend doesn't continue, but it happens sometimes.

Q. How about the short stick, working well?
IAN POULTER: It's starting to look okay. Obviously been doing quite a bit of practice on my putting. That one there just about fell in the front door. I had the feeling going I was hitting some good shots and obviously rolled in a few putts.

Q. Always nice to finish a round up nicely. When you got up to 18?
IAN POULTER: I didn't know whether to chip in or hit the putt. It was bubbling through the first part of the fringe.

Q. Well you're a guy that likes a bit of pressure. And here you can see you need to be in the blue area moving up. Are you concentrating on consolidating that or are you thinking from here, forget that, I'm just going to push myself straight in the top-30 this week?
IAN POULTER: I want to steam roll. I've been very frustrated with the second half of the season. You guys know that, but I've come here this week to win. I want to be very focused on every single shot I hit this week. I'm not interested in 69 or 59 or 49. I'm trying to put myself in this position obviously to get to East Lake. And obviously have a run and see if I can win the FedExCup.

Q. You've always had that ability in your career to, even when it didn't seem like you should, think big. So is this typical of Ian Poulter? You're going to go from here and say the sky's the limit?
IAN POULTER: If I win this week, and I win Chicago, then I've got a chance for the big booty. So I've got off to a decent start, 67 is nice. I'm going to need to play well over the next three rounds. But I have to think like that. Good things can happen if you press. Played well to start the season. Once I get in with a sniff I'm going to have a chance. And hopefully we can do that the next three days.

Q. Would ten million dollars as a bonus make any difference to you?
IAN POULTER: No, not at all.

Q. Honest answer. Very candid.
IAN POULTER: I don't think it will. It would be very nice. There's lots of things I could do with that. But more importantly if I can win certainly this week and win the next few weeks, who knows what that would do. Obviously it would cement me in the Ryder Cup, it would do lots of other things. There's bigger goals than obviously playing for money.

Q. It would be nice, let's be fair. But as always, you're thinking very clearly, just keep it going?
IAN POULTER: That's exactly what I'm going to do.

Q. 4-under 67, great start.
IAN POULTER: Yes, played nice. It's been a rubbish second half of the season, I would say. And clean round of golf. No bogeys, kind of picked my way around the golf course, it's the first time I've played the course this week. I didn't play a Pro Am, I didn't play a practice round. I didn't do any practice on the course at all this week. Sometimes it makes you focus a bit more because you've got to concentrate, you've got to focus obviously and get used to the course very quickly. And I did that very well today.

Q. You had a lot of momentum today. Some putts outside the range that kept you going. You kept the bogeys off the card. Why the rubbish play, what's been behind that?
IAN POULTER: An injury at Texas. I'd done some gym work, and I had done it I think slightly in the gym. And it seems from that moment on I really haven't had my game. I really was in great form, looking like -- having a really strong season. And it's just gone very quiet from that moment onward.

To play like I did today was great. I need to continue that form and play like that for the next three days, see how I fare over the weekend, and obviously Monday, and hopefully we can continue that wicked work I've done.

Q. Being paired with Kevin Chappell and also Boo Weekley, you ran 68th 69th and 70th in the FedExCup standings, did you and Kevin, did you sort of feed off each other?
IAN POULTER: There was no discussion of being 68, 69 or 67. I think it's kind of irrelevant right now. If you go ahead and win the golf tournament you're going to move a long way forward. It's nice that you've got someone else in the group hitting good shots and making a few putts. So that was obviously very nice.

Q. 67, comes into the week in 69th in the FedExCup playoffs. How aware of you of the position you're in, coming here into the Deutsche Bank Championship?
IAN POULTER: I'm fully aware that my numbers have been sliding down over the last few months. I need it to slide up a bit. Obviously shooting 67 is hopefully going to put me on the right track to moving forward if I can have three more good days, play some good golf. If you win one of these FedExCup events, you move a long way up that list, and that's obviously what I'm gunning for.

Q. Speaking of moving up, as you try to win the Deutsche Bank this weekend, there's a lot of golf remaining. Currently you'd be sliding inside that top-30 which would get you into East Lake and The TOUR Championship. How do you compare trying to go after a victory out here during the playoffs with also trying to protect the position that you possibly could get yourself in?
IAN POULTER: I'm not trying to protect anything right now. I've been going the wrong way, as I said, over the last couple of months. There's nothing to protect, it's about moving forward. If I play the golf I've played over the last 18 holes through Saturday, Sunday and Monday then I'd like to see myself have a chance to win, that's the bigger picture. And the bigger picture is trying to get to East Lake. I've never been there yet. It would be quite nice. It would be nice to think about that Monday night and realize, if I can play good golf and see myself moving forward, then I'll be in a good spot with a few weeks to go.

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