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January 12, 2017

Russell Henley

Honolulu, Hawaii

Q. Great start to this tournament, a tournament you've won before. 3-under on each side, 6-under. Your thoughts on how you played today?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I played well. A little shaky with the driver at the start. Got into a rhythm on the back and hit some really good drives that put me into position to attack the course.

Left a couple out there. Disappointed with a par on 9 with how good my drive was, but that's golf. You can always think back to shots that you want back.

Q. They made some changes on some of the greens. What do you think of the improvements?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I think it makes 11 a lot harder. They put the pin on the left today, and you've got to hit a really precise shot on that hole to get it close.

So I think it's good. I can't remember the other ones. 1, I guess they moved the bunker to the other side and moved the bunker to the back of the green. Those are good -- makes the fairway wider, I don't know, good changes. It was a good day.

Q. New irons in the bag I guess you really like?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I like them. Changed everything this fall and really happy with it.

Q. Titleist?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Yeah, Titleist ball's been great. Like I said, really happy with all the clubs.

Q. Is this a golf course you like?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I guess I like that it's firm. I like that the greens are bermuda, just like I practice on at home. I like that it's not a super long course, but you have to be precise where you hit it. I feel like that's not really the trend these days in making these golf courses. They are real long, and you can hit it -- if you hit it really far, you can hit it kind of, not everywhere, but you can spray it a little bit more if you're long. I don't think I hit it short, but I don't hit it as long as Bubba or Dustin or those guys. You've got to be precise off the tees here and I think that's just what makes it fun. It's more placement golf, and I enjoy that.

Q. When you have a couple weeks off like you've had, and you showed back up and you play this well in the first round, is there any part of you, I don't want to say an anxiety, but you really don't know what to expect when it's under the gun I guess? Guys talk about it all the time.
RUSSELL HENLEY: I think so. I try to play as many matches with buddies back home to get that feel and as much as I can, but there's nothing that matches playing in a TOUR event to me. This is the start of my fifth season and I'm starting to kind of understand how my body works when it's under pressure and when to calm it down and when to let it go.

It's a process. If I had not done it a bunch of times before, I probably wouldn't know. But it is an uncomfortable feeling honestly when you haven't played in a while.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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