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November 9, 2017

Branden Grace

Sun City, South Africa

Q. Level par through 12, everything quiet and suddenly 4-under for three. Tell us about that run from your point of view.
BRANDEN GRACE: Yeah, even from the beginning, I didn't do anything wrong. Putter was cold. 3-putted the second which was costly. Then made a decent bogey on 3 and 3-putted the fourth, so the putter was really cold.

Gave myself some good chances and managed to make one on 7, the par 3, which is a real bonus, tough little hole. Managed to make a few putts, kept hitting the ball great and giving myself chances.

Q. Beautiful, sunny day and looks straightforward, yet no one is past 4-under. Tell us why.
BRANDEN GRACE: It's tough. It's a brutal golf course.

I think for a lot of the Europeans coming to South Africa, it's a different grass and it's tough to get your head around this place. Because it is so compact, really, between the mountains, it's really hard to trust yourself out there with the wind and stuff.

Sometimes it feels down and it might be in by the time you hit it. It's just trying to stick to your game plan and stick to your shots. It's one of those events where nobody really runs away with it. It's a proper grind test out there.

Q. Third year last year, fourth the year before. What is it about Sun City that brings the best out of you?
BRANDEN GRACE: For me, it's nice to be able to play in South Africa firstly. It's my first start here this year. I want to make the most out of that one.

I think it's a grinder's golf course. If you can keep it in play and give yourself some chances, I normally do well. I think that's why I've done well in maybe like a U.S. Open and things like that before. I don't see South Africa is anything different to those.

Q. 2-over through four, it seemed to be going the wrong way for you. All of a sudden you turned things around and shot a 68 in the end?
BRANDEN GRACE: Yeah, it's one of those where nobody is really going to run away with it, except for Alex Noren last year, really.

I didn't really do anything wrong the first couple of holes. Just a couple mistakes on the greens. Ball-striking is there and I gave myself some chances up until the last hole really. It was nice to turn the round around and to finish with 4-under.

Q. It was 13, 14 and 15 that really made the round for you, two birdies and an eagle. Tell us about those three holes.
BRANDEN GRACE: I've always played those holes pretty aggressive, except on 13, as well. It's not normally a driver hole. I hit it up there, hit a sand wedge. Not the best sand wedge or that into maybe 25 foot and made that putt, and I think that just really got the momentum going.

And then hit a great driver, 3-iron into the par 5 to about seven feet, and I think that was a big putt. If that missed out, I would have been a little bit disappointed walking off with a birdie.

Then made a nice 15-footer or so on the next, as well. Those three holes really got it in the right direction.

Q. Top five in the last two years. What is it about this golf course that suits your game so well?
BRANDEN GRACE: I think it's a grinder's golf course. It's one of those where you have to be aggressive when you can, and when you don't have to, you don't have to.

You know, I like this golf course. This is the type of grass that I grew up playing, kikuyu, and I just have fond memories of it. I've had a lot of wins on grass like this and courses like this. It feels nice to be able to finish the day off with a good round and looking forward to the next couple days.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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