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September 26, 2015

Henrik Stenson

Atlanta, Georgia

THE MODERATOR: We would like to welcome Henrik Stenson to the interview room. Another -- tough conditions out there today. You've been in this position before, certainly that margin has narrowed now with Jordan.

Tomorrow, I believe, will be the seventh time you guys have played together in an official PGA TOUR event. Talk about your round today and then going forward, tomorrow.

HENRIK STENSON: Yeah, wet, muddy, tough. What is that race called Tough Mudder? Is that what it's called? That's what it felt like.

No, tough conditions, as you all know. I saw a few of you out there for awhile, and I think everyone's soaking wet and muddy and needs a good wash out for tomorrow.

So, hopefully we can get some better weather. It was soaking wet fairways. We were playing the ball up, but even so, we'd prefer lies. You're still hitting shots out there where there's water underneath it. And you could get some funny contacts on it. I think I started off my day with a bit of a water flier on the first, straight over the back of the green there.

So, yeah, it was a grind and I didn't have my best day tee to green, I felt. Battling the swing a little bit, but still kept it together fairly nicely and we're still at the races. I would have liked to have gone a few better, but we're still up there and yeah, it's all going to be decided tomorrow.


Q. On a couple of holes, like number 5 or what have you, did you ever consider driver, just how long the holes were playing?
HENRIK STENSON: I don't think anyone thought it was going to play as long as it did. I missed my tee shot, but Jordan hit a decent drive and decent 3-wood and it was 25 yards short of the green. I mean, it was -- I think he would say later that -- you can ask him about it, but I think he also would have liked to have seen the tee box maybe up a little bit on that one, if there was a way to put it a bit more forward. Because it's not often you see guys hitting driver, 3-wood and can't reach on a par-4.

So, I don't know, it might be a tight race between the 18th at Chambers Bay for him there. Ask him about that. We had a little crack out there about that, but.


So, no, it's still for me, I feel like I need to hit the fairways and give myself the best chances, especially when I'm battling my swing a little bit. I wouldn't start trying to push and hit drivers out there.

So, I still think I got away with a decent number of fairway hits, but then my irons weren't that good either.

So all in all, it was a tough day and I didn't play my best, but as I said I still think I kept it together quite nicely in tough conditions.

Q. What options did you have coming out of the bunker on 17?
HENRIK STENSON: None. It was like -- I think that I did as good as I could, unless you want to start playing Hollywood shots. That wasn't the time for it. Try and land it in the rough just on top of the bunker and such.

So, I think the best thing was probably 20 feet and I probably ended up 25 feet, something like that. So, no, you were completely dead when we missed that one right. That was one of the disappointing shots of the day, and I paid the price for it.

Jordan did really well coming in the last four holes. He's playing 2-under, right? Which is great around here.

He made a good up-and-down for birdie on 15.

And a miracle save on 16.

And then good 2-putt on 17.

And a great birdie on the last.

And I was happy with my 4-iron and 2-putt up the last, I think most people would take that. Yeah, we're trailing by one, see if I can bring it back tomorrow.

Q. Can you talk briefly about that putt on 15 that missed for a birdie?
HENRIK STENSON: On 15? My putt? Yeah, no, I hit a pretty good approach in there. I don't know how long it was, probably about 10 feet, something like that. 8, 10 feet. 10 feet probably with a bit of left-to-right. Thought I hit a decent putt but didn't break as much as I thought.

Q. Has it become more of a grind because it's two days in a row of this stuff that you had to go through?
HENRIK STENSON: Yeah, and again, it would have been nice coming off the course yesterday to go down and hit some shots, but when we know it's raining and it's just a mud bath down on the range, it's not really the time to practice.

And then I had a date with you guys and some other things to do, so it didn't turn into much of a practice session. Then, so, I didn't hit balls yesterday.

And then today warming up in the same wet conditions and mud bath down on the range and coming off here and not feeling great about the swing, but there's not much to go down and practice in at this point either.

So, we'll just have to try and hopefully have better conditions tomorrow and give myself a bit more of a warm-up.

Q. That putt that Jordan made on 18, you looked at Lordy. Do you almost expect him, after watching the season that he's had, of making those?
HENRIK STENSON: Absolutely. That was a tap-in, comparing it to the one he made on 16. I was looking at the board and we got the stats when he's putting there and it said 20 to 25 feet, he's making 24 percent and I thought, well it feels like it's a bigger chance than 24 percent and he just rolled it right in the middle.

So, two great putts on his behalf on the 16 and 18. And yeah, he's not going to make all of them, but he's making a good chunk of them, that's for sure. So, that's why he's tough to play against.

Q. This is a little off topic, but what shot of Jordan's from this year stands out most in your mind?
HENRIK STENSON: I played with him the first two days at Augusta, but I can't pinpoint which one. He hit a lot of good shots there, so I'm sure I would -- since I was there and saw it in person I would pick one of those. But I can't give you a specific one at this point. Sorry.

Q. Did you have any other situations like you had at 1, where it took you awhile to find dry land to place your ball?
HENRIK STENSON: 13 and 14 I was in the rough, but those two fairways kind of landing zone is pretty low and everything comes down the hill. So 13 and 14 and 15.

16 was fine because that actually slopes even more, so that was dry.

But -- and 17 is potentially a little bit the same as well. And any fairway that's kind of low. But there's a few on the back nine that are lower, so 13 and I would say for sure, 13 and 14.

Q. In your two visits here there's a very wide discrepancy between how you do on the front and the back, does that speak to the course or is there something that you need to work on on that?
HENRIK STENSON: No, I would say it's mainly -- I mean I don't know if you looked at the general averages on the front and the back. I couldn't tell you. Obviously, I've had some blistering front nines out of my whatever it is, seven rounds. I had a couple of really good front nines. I think the course sets up easier on the front.

There's definitely more birdie chances on the front nine than on the back nine. The last three holes in general are tough holes.

So I don't know, I mean, have a look and see what the general idea is. I think it's more the course, but I've been off to a couple of hot starts as well, so. I don't know. Maybe a coin toss.

THE MODERATOR: All right. Thank you for your time.


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