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August 5, 2016

James Morrison

East Lothian, Scotland

Q. You admittedly came into this week playing very poorly for the past couple of months, what's the difference been?
JAMES MORRISON: All backswing, I'm afraid. Normally for me it's mental. Bit of a struggle the last five weeks. I finished fourth in Austria and thought I cracked it and backswing's kind of gone downhill, figured it out and kind of playing well again.

Q. 18-under par for 43 holes and you told me you were hot in the Pro-Am, too.
JAMES MORRISON: When I got here, just loved the look of the golf course, and for me my confidence grows pretty quickly, the minute I get my backswing in good position, I can go off and running. I'm putting it well, hitting it great. I'm very, very happy.

Q. Players tell us that momentum in these 18-hole matches is important and you've been up each time.
JAMES MORRISON: Yeah, I haven't been down yet, I don't think. Telling my caddie, we are trying to play for a score. I birdied the second hole, and I said, minus 16 or some sort of comment. Just trying to play the golf course more, where in years past, you're back to amateur days and you try to play the man. If I can birdie all the par 5s, pick up a birdie here or there, I'm not going to get beaten.

It's very easy to fall down looking at his game and not worry about your game. Just keep hitting shots and looking forward and not making those silly mistakes.

Q. You mentioned you haven't been down, you haven't been down for a single hole. How valuable is that in a week that could be relatively long, playing relatively stress-free golf?
JAMES MORRISON: Exactly, I mean, it makes it easy. My knees are hurting me now but I haven't gone past the 16th tee yet, so I guess it's just crucial to keep going forward. When you get to two or three down, it's very hard to come back, especially at this level when everyone here can win a golf tournament or any match play event.

It's a scorable golf course, so you know you can make birdies and you've got to keep going forward. And playing someone like Michael today, even though I was 4-up after nine, I knew I had to keep going because he could make five birdies in a row out of nowhere. Just keep putting the foot down and pressing forward.

Q. Great transformation from the previous weeks.
JAMES MORRISON: Yeah, it's been, I guess for me in years past, where it's normally been sort of technical, I guess my game and attitude is at a certain point now where it's all technical. Me and my coach, Hugh Marr, haven't quite figured it out. That's the way it goes, and to put it all in there, as well, playing two majors to top it off when your game is not quite there makes it look worse than it actually is.

Had a few beers in New York at the weekend, me and Hugh, and figured it out and went about it from there. Feel like I've really cracked it. When I get my backswing in a really good position, my mind turns around very quickly. So I'm playing really, really good golf, which is very encouraging.

Q. Hugh Marr?
JAMES MORRISON: He's Scottish, but he's mainly English. He's living in England. We kind of figured it out.

Q. Is there anything in particular, just the backswing?
JAMES MORRISON: Just getting so short and so flat. So for me, when I get short and flat, I can't feel myself fading it. So the ball is either going straight right or whipping left, which I found out last week at the PGA. Can't play major events from short in the left hand rough. Backswing, hands high. Usual stuff.

Q. Just done in a conversation?
JAMES MORRISON: Oh, a conversation and me giving Hugh a bit of a -- on the back side, all sorts of things like that (laughter). But it's good. Just lots of looking at old swings and looking at what I do best. The thing about golf, everyone has their own faults and their own strengths. It's a matter of keeping the strength going and adjusting the fault. Feel like I'm back on the straight and narrow.

Q. Does the match-play format help when you haven't been shooting as low scores as you'd like?
JAMES MORRISON: It's weird, haven't broken par for five weeks I don't think but here I am 20-under par for four days, whatever it is. It's a stupid game, whereas you think you're stroke play, you don't shoot under par, but you're thinking match play, stroke play, comes along with it.

I said to my wife, "Should I play this week?"

She says, "Match play will be good, something different to think about, get your mind around something completely different," and it's kind of working.

Q. How important was the Pro-Am score in terms of where you are now?
JAMES MORRISON: Definitely, because got here Tuesday morning and had not really implemented the backswing feel we were going to implement. We did that Tuesday morning and it worked straightaway. And to go into the Pro-Am and play 18 holes with a knew swing shot and hit it great and shoot a good score, that was a massive confidence builder, really.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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