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March 10, 2017

Ian Poulter

Palm Harbor, Florida

Q. Overall, look at the number of birdies today, what positives do you take from today and yesterday into a big weekend for you?
IAN POULTER: Yeah, today was a especially a very solid round of golf. The chances I had, there was probably only one putt there which was an outside, kind of 30-footer. The rest were putts you would expect to convert.

I missed a little one on the difficult par 3, 13, which I hit a lovely shot in there to about four feet. A shame to obviously bogey the last, but it was a good round of golf. It was looking like it was going to be a clean round of golf.

Q. You've been here the last couple of years. What have you learnt and what have you taken from those experiences at the Copperhead, and you came up for a friendly match, as well?
IAN POULTER: Yeah, we popped up Sunday, which was valuable to see the course. The greens are super quick and they are quite firm, especially in the afternoon, if the sun gets through the clouds, it's going to bake the greens in the afternoon.

They are a much better putting surface this year than they were last year, so they have had a little bit of time to settle in. But it's a tricky course. You know, there's a tough set of par 3s. You've got to play them pretty smart. You have to putt it in play. If you put it in play, you will have some chances and you just need to be careful around the close there where you can make a mistake.

Q. We know you're back with a major medical extension and a number of entries, a certain amount of been -- without getting into specifics, but just mentally knowing how you've performed when you needed to under pressure, Ryder Cups --
IAN POULTER: Not thinking about it. I'm not thinking about it. Promise.

Q. Your mind-set, for viewers at home, always fascinating to hear the way you talk to yourself. What are you saying to yourself, the lessons, mentally, how you're dealing with the situation to make sure that you give yourself every opportunity to get the maximum out of it?
IAN POULTER: Going into today, I couldn't make mistakes. I needed to play well; I did that. I'm pretty pleased and I think I'm playing good enough golf at the minute. I'm very comfortable with my game.

So I need to forget about what's going on behind the scenes. Got to play golf. Because if I can play golf, I can do some good stuff. It is there in the back of the mind. But when you go and play like this, you're not really worried about it, and I shouldn't.

Q. And your caddie this week?
IAN POULTER: Yeah, unfortunately Terry has a bit of a sore back. He's got some disk issues. He's had it a long time. He's going to see a specialist next Tuesday. He may well go in for an operation to have it cleaned up, so this week I've got Jason on the bag. He caddies for Yani, so we'll have to see how we go.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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