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January 20, 2006

Colin Montgomerie


Q. You really got things going today, there was a weather break, not quite as breezy as yesterday afternoon; how do the greens change?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: They grow. The course is good, they have got the greens grown in, the bunkers are even. It's become a very, very good golf course and I really enjoy playing it. I enjoyed playing with Vijay and Sergio the first two days, trying to keep up with them, not off the tee but in scoring and we did okay, we had fun.

Q. It all began to happen in the middle of the round, did it feel like hard work coming in?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Just continued with the way I finished last year, and to have four or five birdies around the turn, I know I dropped one at the ninth, I was going for 5 under par for the round after 11 holes or 12 holes which, was good with a bogey things were swimming along. To finish off over the weekend, I need to get to start of 10 or 12 under from now to have a chance but that is possible and we'll see what happens.

Q. You talked this week about how significant your win in Dubai was ten years ago, and things began to happen, hopefully the same thing this time?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I really enjoy playing in the Middle East. I really enjoy coming back here. My own course is down the road and the clubhouse is opening up on Monday and it's a thrill for me. I enjoy that; I feel very comfortable. All of the players do, we all feel very comfortable here, very safe, and the weather is fantastic, it gives us an opportunity to play

And all credit to everybody associated with this tournament to get this thing off the ground. I believe we're on contract for five years minimum and let's hope that goes forward from there.

Q. How proud are you as one of the star players on The European Tour that you have helped this whole Tour grow?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Sometimes you don't see it that way but thank you immensely at the same time. We started off with Volvo back in 1988 so I've seen it all on my 19 years on tour. And seeing Dubai develop the way it has, and now we're here now and Qatar next week, I'm sure there will be more golf courses of this ilk, if you like, in the near future and we look forward to playing them all.

Q. Did the greens significantly lose pace?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Not lose pace as such, they get more grainy. With the setting sun, it becomes more difficult in the afternoon to score, but we did okay today. That was all right. We survived. We managed to beat Vijay and Sergio, it's always good when you start playing with the second and sixth guy in the world, and I have to do that again over the weekend. But I played okay today and that was all right. 68 around here in the wind and the conditions was okay today.

Q. You looked comfortable around the turn rolling in those putts?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: You hit the ball to six foot, you still have to finish it off. And Vijay, he's playing fantastic golf tee to green. If he putted at all, he'd be well out of sight now, but thank goodness he didn't and at the same time, everyone is in sight and looking forward to the weekend now.

Q. Did Vijay mention to you the greens

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: We all were talking about it as we go around. With this amount of sunshine, things grow. You need two things for grass to grow, water and sun, and they have an abundance of both here.

Q. Are you playing the way you were towards the end of last season?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: That was a good round of golf I'm very comfortable, very confident on the golf courses right now. I'm a big believer in the fact that you believe, you're halfway there, and I am right now.

And this is a good start, but I have to get myself in the Top 10 tomorrow, I need a very good score tomorrow, I need a 66, minimum, to have a chance of winning this thing on Sunday. So I'm going out there tomorrow, and see what happens. I'm five behind, but if I shoot 66, I'll still be behind, but I'll have given myself a chance of winning.

Q. The four footer you missed at the 14th could be crucial in the end?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well these things happen. I hit a lovely seven iron in there and the ball just seemed to grab some grain and rolled away. Things like that happen, I've seen Sergio and Vijay miss shorter ones the first two days, so that's okay. The seven iron was 178 but it was quite windy so that is not normal.

I don't like being five behind to be honest but five behind beats six behind, and we'll go out tomorrow with the intention of making up ground.

Q. Some clubs, your second on the 11th?


Q. And the tee shot on the 12th?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: 6 iron to four foot, that was a good shot.

Q. And the pitch on the previous hole?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: The 10th hole to just three foot. That was back to normal.

Q. You ended up short on the next par 4 just on the fringe?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I just didn't hit it hard enough with a 9 iron, it was 126 yards should have hit it harder but the wind must have come up or something and I didn't hit it hard enough.

End of FastScripts.

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