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DUBAI DUTY FREE IRISH OPEN HOSTED BY THE RORY FOUNDATION


July 9, 2017


Tommy Fleetwood


Portstewart, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland

Q. 68 for a total of 15-under. How will you reflect on your Irish Open?
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: I had it going every round, really, early on, and just couldn't -- I think especially with the way, it was generally after 11, 12 holes, I had it low and you have two par 5s to come, and it seems like everybody is sort of making the scores on them a little bit.

It's disappointing starting the way I was doing but I think -- I mean, after last week, maybe your expectations are so high and you start off playing well and you just think -- you expect the best of yourself. Maybe something I can look at in the future. But it's still a good week.

Q. Many people would take a week off before The Open and you're not. Why?
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: I am. I pulled out at the start of the week, really. It was something -- it's very hard to sort of not play events. It's something I'm not used to at all. I've played always a lot in big events, and Scottish Open is such a great event. It's hard making those decisions.

But yeah, you know, I suppose you have to do it or maybe hopefully I can try and get used to scheduling a bit better. But yeah, it's always a tough decision, but I thought a week before The Open when I know it's going to be such a busy week, is probably the best.

Q. You've increased your lead over Sergio GarcĂ­a in The Race to Dubai, but Jon Rahm is now on your tail. Your thoughts on that?
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: Well, he's a great player, isn't he. I got drawn with him last week for a couple of days. I saw his score on the leaderboard there which is unbelievable. He must be playing amazing to be fair.

Hopefully he's not going to play much. We've got big events coming. We've got majors and WGCs coming. We'll just see. I won't be looking over my shoulder too much. I'll just keep concentrating on what I'm doing and hopefully win another big one by the end of the year.

Q. Obviously sometimes winning can be a distraction as you found in Abu Dhabi, missing the cut the following week, but how pleased are you to get out there and turn in a solid four rounds this week.
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: I felt a little different this week than Abu Dhabi. To be fair I was exhausted that time. This time I felt all right. I sort of took it in my stride a lot better, and obviously I was still playing well. I got off to very fast starts every round, and I think I may be didn't handle my sort of high expectations very well. Got frustrated when I couldn't quite capitalise on good starts. So that's something to look at in the future.

But it's been a very good week. It's so easy to forget how good a Top-20, Top-30, a Top-10 finish is, and you've just got to keep that in mind.

Q. Talking about momentum and The Open coming up, how nice has it been to get out on a links golf course just two weeks before?
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: It's brilliant, just to get used to how it's playing. I think the course was playing softer than they wanted it to, but yeah, I mean, all of a sudden, get the odd unlucky bounce. The course plays so much different with wind than without.

There's different shots around the greens, and the bunker sand's different and the pace of the greens, as well, can go into that. It's great to have a competitive week. It's all well and good hitting balls in practise, but you can't beat competitive golf. It's been great this week.

Q. And the crowds, they love their golf in this part of the world.
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: Yeah, they are diehard today, all out there. But I was lucky enough, I had a good group first two days, Justin and G-Mac, and then I played with Justin again yesterday. So I was lucky enough to have the big crowds, and Irish crowds are brilliant. Fantastic to play in front of, and I did appreciate the support, but they are brilliant.

Q. What are your preparations like for The Open now?
TOMMY FLEETWOOD: I'll get over there two or three times. I'll have a nice little sort of rest. I'll try not to do loads. Try to make the most of having a week, sort of rest and preparation. But I'll be over there a little bit so I can do less the week of The Open.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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