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August 12, 2017

Rory McIlroy

Charlotte, North Carolina

RORY McILROY: It was tough. It's playing tough. You get off to a bad start, 2 over through 4, 2 over through 5, are you then putting pressure on yourself to birdie the birdie holes, the 7th 8th, 10th.

I didn't get off to the best of starts but that's way it is. After playing practice rounds, I felt like there was a decent one out there. The way the conditions have been the last three days, I haven't seen a low score out there for me. I definitely haven't driven the ball well enough the last few days to give myself chances for birdies and build a score. So I just need to hit some more fairways tomorrow.

But yeah long day. Not really frustrating because maybe if I had got myself a little bit up the leaderboard and then faltered at the end or whatever, it was just a day where I stood still.

Q. What did you make of the course in general, the pin positions?
RORY McILROY: I felt the pin positions yesterday were tougher than they were today. The greens were more receptive than we got them yesterday morning.

I think when that rain came in last night, it got really receptive and that's why you saw a lot of the guys go low and post low scores yesterday afternoon. I think that I knew overnight this place can firm up especially with the Sub Air and stuff. They made it tricky the last couple of days, that's for sure. It looks like single digits under par will win this thing tomorrow.

Q. The pace of play was slow out there, generally speaking. Did that affect you today?
RORY McILROY: It didn't affect you. I think we're used to slow rounds on the Tour these days. Guess they probably could have played us in twos and it would have been enough daylight. I don't know why they put us in threes. Hopefully we go to twos tomorrow if the weather is decent. That will get the guys around a little bit quicker. Five hours 20 minutes out there in that heat was a little too long for my liking.

Q. Will you tend to go to 3 woods tomorrow?
RORY McILROY: I guess at this stage of the tournament what is the point. You may as well try to get it down there. I swear the rough is growing overnight. There was a couple of spots out there I hit it, I thought I was okay and I could barely get it to the green. The 5th hole, the 11th hole. There was a couple of spots I hit it I thought it was okay. I had a wedge in my hand. Out of the rough usually it's okay, but it just sinks right to the bottom of this Bermuda and you've got no shot from there. I hit a good driver on 11 to get it up close. Try to get wedge in my hand.

You'd rather be 300 in the fairway than 350 in the rough. I'm not giving up that much. We'll see what I do tomorrow.

I felt good with the driver all week. Sometimes when you are trying to cut corners and take it over angles, fairways just become narrow for you.

Q. Was it mainly missing fairways that was the problem for you?
RORY McILROY: I only hit six fairways. Six out of 14 fairways just isn't going to -- I had a decent drive on 18 there and it's not in the heavy rough, the semi rough. The difference between the fairway and semi rough, the control that you lose. Even hitting a wedge, the control that you lose on your golf ball is huge. There's a massive, massive premium for hitting it in the fairway.

Q. Getting it close to the hole seems to be difficult?
RORY McILROY: From the rough it's difficult. I felt like I had some better iron shots today. I went with the pin positions, with the firmness of the greens. It's definitely the way -- the way they set the golf course up this week, it's made you play cautious golf. You have to be happy with 25, 30 feet.

Kevin Kisner led proximity to the hole with 33 feet. That is sort of the way the golf course.

Q. Kevin Kisner is a Bermuda greens specialist. Is that a key factor this week?
RORY McILROY: The links play we had in Europe and then last week in Akron where there was pure bent and pretty much perfect surfaces. Not just the putting but then your chipping and realizing, okay, I'm pitching this into the green down grain, all that stuff you have to factor into.

Q. Given the injury that you had, how long do you think before you are 100 percent?
RORY McILROY: Looking forward to 2018.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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