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October 31, 2015

James Hahn

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Q. Great bogey-free 64 today. If you could, take me through some of your key shots on that front nine 30.
JAMES HAHN: Okay. Yeah, it got off to a great start. Mainly, I had some drawing in there.

I was hitting my irons a little far, so it took me a couple holes to adjust.

Like on hole 2, I had wedge in there and just absolutely airmailed the pin. I had about 35 feet and then I ended up making that putt up and over a hill. So that kind of eased the nerves a little bit.

Anytime you're playing with Adam Scott and got a big gallery, you know, there's a lot of anxiety in there, it's not really nerves, but.

And then the third hole, I kind of knew that my -- I was swinging it a little faster. So there's these bunkers that are 290 carry up the hill, and decided to just give driver a whack and hit it. Usually I can't carry it no matter how hard I swing. But I figured it would help me out in that situation. Ended up hitting just a perfect drive. Carried about 300 and then had iron, 4-iron, into that par-5, missed green but got it up-and-down for birdie.

So that kind of set the tone.

Next hole, 4, just hit a smart shot, 15 feet right of the flag. You don't want to miss left on that pin. I made a nice 15-footer. Speed was impeccable today.

Hole 5, another par-5, I hit a good drive, just a little bit too far to the right, didn't get a good bounce. Did the smart thing and laid up instead of trying to go for it from the rough. Had a perfect number, 110 yards. Hit it just past the flag and drained another 10, 12-footer for birdie.

So, it kind of got the round going, four birdies in a row. Then from there I just kind of -- I wasn't really firing at flags. You put yourself in that position, you don't have to go after so many flags, and you just let the birdies come to you.

Hole 7, I had a perfect number, 104 to a back pin. The ball's weren't spinning back today, so decided just to fly it all the way to the pin. Hit it to about three feet and made that one for birdie.

Then on 8, just had another perfect number. It was just a good hard 7-iron and at that point, I just felt like I could just fire at any flag and not miss. I hit that one to about 12 feet.

That putt lipped out. If I would have hit it a little firmer, it would have gone in. But I hit another perfect putt.

Then on 9, hit two great shots, 2-iron middle of the fairway, and then hit a little 7-iron. At that point, I just wanted to just kind of test myself and challenge myself and see if I could control a shot instead of taking one club less and going all out.

So I had just a chip 7-iron and came out perfect. Landed two feet next to the hole, rolled out 10 feet. Made that one for birdie.

So, it's good to see the putts go in early, and it's very addicting. Once you make a birdie, one, two, three, in a row, it makes you want more. Pars just wasn't sufficient enough for me out there.

Even on 10, I got aggressive, hit driver off the tee box, 3-wood, about pin high to the right in the rough and then almost chipped that one in. Had another tap in birdie.

So, got off to a great start. 7 birdies in 10 holes. And then from there, just kind of -- didn't really press as hard as I wanted to, knowing that we also have tomorrow to play.

So I didn't -- I'm not really a front runner. I don't want to go out and shoot lights out and be leading by one or two. Just it's just a position that I'm not familiar with, but hopefully one day in my career I will be.

But I feel like just putting myself in contention, I mean, Justin Thomas is just shooting lights out, so I figure if I can stay within one or two of him or even three, that I have a good chance coming down the stretch tomorrow.

Q. Right now, so you're three back. Talk about the importance of getting off to that good start tomorrow and what confidence maybe you have now after shooting a front nine 30.
JAMES HAHN: Right. I feel like all the scoring holes are on the front nine.

The back nine, you just -- you have to hit really good shots and give yourself as many opportunities for birdie. And a good shot might end up being 20 feet on the back nine.

On the front nine, there are two reachable par-5s. Today's pin locations were fairly easier on the front nine than the back nine, so you can go after flags a little bit more.

I think the par-3, 4th hole, was only 138 yards or so. So it's not like you're hitting 4-iron on the par-3.

So being able to take advantage of those holes and give yourself enough looks to where when you see a couple go in, you feel good about it. I feel like it is really important.

The back nine you're just kind of trying to steal one here, one or two coming in. 18, they have the tee boxes up on 18 today, some guys were going for it in two. That's kind of a -- if you hit a good drive, you can go for it in two. But I missed the fairway, but -- I'm just rambling.


Q. Lastly, if you could, just some comments about the golf course and do you enjoy playing this golf course?
JAMES HAHN: I love playing this golf course. I feel like the conditions are challenging. You definitely have to be in shape to walk the golf course in this humidity and the heat.

You have to hit a lot of great shots out there. A lot of great tee shots, put yourself in the fairway, to where you can lift, clean and place it.

I think that was huge for me this week, is being able to hit a lot of fairways, and getting good lies in the fairways.

When you're off in the rough, you get fliers and the ball's not stopping on the greens from the rough.

So, yeah, I feel like the fairways are great.

The greens are a little slow compared to PGA TOUR conditions, but they roll true. They do what they're supposed to do, which is a credit to the greens staff, they're doing a great job just maintaining the golf course in these conditions.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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