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July 15, 2017

Ian Poulter

Ayrshire, Scotland

Q. Give us your assessment of a third round 71?
IAN POULTER: Pretty happy. I think I would have signed for that before the day started. We knew the conditions were going to be really tough today. That's why they brought the tee times forward as much as they did. I didn't think they would be quite as bad as they was. I mean, I think 12 was about as tough as I've ever seen in terms of wind and rain.

It was a job to hold the umbrella, let alone try to hit a 6-iron from 125 or 130, whatever it was, and even that didn't get near the pin. So you know, brutally tough conditions. I hung in there pretty strong. So all in all, it was a good day.

Q. How important is the right attitude in those circumstances where you have to be patient and accept the odd mistake that comes along?
IAN POULTER: Attitude is everything. I think more than anything else -- you can beat yourself up before you get on the golf course, which is a problem. You know it's going to be tough. You know it's links golf. You know the bunkers are there to catch you out and you know you can make a mistake at any given moment, especially in strong wind and rain.

So before you go out, you could do half the damage before you start. I think starting with the right frame of mind, and kind of, you know, know it's going to be a tough day, and everyone else is going to have just as tough a day as you are. You know, grind out pars when you need to grind them out, and if you can take a few opportunities, then it will add up to a pretty good day.

Q. You've won 14 times around the world but not since 2012. Just how excited are you about the possibilities tomorrow?
IAN POULTER: Excellent. I don't know whether I want it beautiful or even like this to be honest. I obviously could get it around the golf course in tricky conditions, but to your point, I'm excited. It's good to be in that position. You've just got to stay patient in this game. You never know what can happen. There's life in the old dog yet, and I'm relishing the opportunity tomorrow to go out and get stuck in.

Q. Your son, Luke, has got a future in television, on-course commentating, he was brilliant.
IAN POULTER: They told me how nervous he was last week when they got him in the SKY Zone and he was hitting a couple of shots and the mic got in front of him and he just froze. So I said, if you get in front of a microphone, just speak normally. Apparently Radar was telling him he was doing a great job. I look forward to seeing some of the clips.

Q. Pleased with that?
IAN POULTER: Yeah, it was always going to be one of those tough days. It was forecast to be high winds and obviously a bit of rain. I think we can cope with playing in the high winds. It's when the rain kicks in, as well, it becomes very difficult to control your golf ball, very difficult to keep grips dry, and obviously hit good golf shots.

So it was a tough day for everyone. I'm pleased that I managed to get in the clubhouse with no real dramas, and I will enjoy a nice cup of tea.

Q. You look very relaxed and focused out there. How comfortable are you with your golf game at the moment?
IAN POULTER: I feel better today than I did the other day. I didn't feel that balanced, and I needed to work on that. So I've done a good job in the last couple of days trying to feel my balance point. I think I've got it.

Still need to work on a couple of things. It's one of those days you've just got to hang tough. You got up-and-down when you have to. You try and hole putts when you've got those opportunities to make birdie, and if you are going to make a mistake, just make sure it's not a big one.

Q. Very tight leaderboard, and the weather is supposed to ease tomorrow. How aggressive do you need to be going into this final day?
IAN POULTER: Well, I just need to finish one in front of everyone else. Obviously I'm a leaderboard watcher. I will obviously go out there and do the best I can. I'll be aggressive to the pin locations that I feel are accessible, and just go and have some fun.

I'm in a good mental state. Obviously a few months back, things were pretty difficult but obviously life's a little bit easier right now and obviously I'm enjoying my golf.

Q. How do you feel going into the final day?
IAN POULTER: I feel good, I feel great, I feel excited to be in this position, and obviously I relish the opportunity tomorrow to try to put my hand on that trophy. I need to play well. There's a lot of players behind me. There's a lot at stake tomorrow and obviously I'm going to do my best.

It was really difficult, brutal at times. I think the start of the round of golf, you know, teeing off in the wind and rain was difficult. Obviously it eased off a little bit. We were able to play, you know, in decent wind and then all of a sudden it kind of, just as we got to about the turn, the wind picked up and obviously the rain started to drive in.

So around the turn for about four or five holes there, it was looking pretty bleak. But just stay composed, just try and hit golf shots; know it's difficult for everyone else that's out there on the golf course, and try and get in the clubhouse without too many mistakes.

Q. Saw your reaction, I think was 17, with the chip. Did today some pars become more like birdies because of the conditions?
IAN POULTER: Yeah, you've only got to look at the scores to know that guys obviously weren't going to run too far forward. I think apart from Sully, who shot a great score, obviously there was nobody kind of running up that board.

It was always going to be a tough day. It was always going to be a day that would catch a few people out, and difficult condition s like that don't come very often, and it's nice to play well in those conditions.

Q. Going into the final day, tied for the lead at the moment, how nice is it to be out in front rather than having to chase maybe to get a good victory?
IAN POULTER: It's just nice to be in a good position. Doesn't matter whether you're in the lead or five clear or five behind; if you feel good and you like your chances, then golf's a great game to go and play on the big stage. It is the big stage right now. This is the third of a run of great events on The European Tour, and obviously it's links golf, as well.

There's a lot at stake tomorrow. There's a lot at stake obviously over the summer period, so looking forward to it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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