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November 17, 2017

Justin Rose

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Q. 2-under, how would you sum up that performance?
JUSTIN ROSE: I was trying to think about it. It's actually a tricky one to try to sum up. I drove the ball really, really well, which obviously set up an opportunity to shoot a really good score. I just felt like, I would say the putter really was the weakest link today.

Had a really hard time reading the greens. That was what I found the hardest. Created quite a few good chances, especially on the back nine again.

Front nine was steady enough really, to be honest. Had a couple lucky breaks there at 7 and 8 but then couldn't quite capitalize with wedges in my hand at 10 and 11. So I think was a day that could have been a couple better but for the putter.

Q. Speeded the greens up a bit. Was that a factor?
JUSTIN ROSE: I felt like they were breaking more. I was under reading putts, which when the greens get quicker, there's a little bit less holding the ball in the slope. Now you tell me; thanks, mate.

Q. Fleetwood, a 65; were you aware of scores before you teed up today?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I was aware of Tyrrell, as well. Knew there was a good score to be out there but from Tommy's point of view it's a great bounce-back after yesterday. Like I tried to say all week, doesn't really make much difference to me in my mind-set.

Might make a difference on Sunday because I know there's tons of permutations still. But in terms of my task, it doesn't make too much difference.

Q. Do you have a target? You have a feel for this golf course through the first two days. Do you have a target in mind or is it the old cliché, one shot at a time?
JUSTIN ROSE: It is the old cliché. I think come out tomorrow positive. You don't want to leave yourself too much to do on Sunday from too far back. Just come out tomorrow and have a good, positive mind-set and try to make a few birdies. Might spend an extra 20 minutes on the putting green in the morning. Felt the ball position was creeping too fall forward maybe. Because I felt like I was sort of guiding it towards the hole.

Q. Very much in contention to win this championship. As you walk off this golf course, are you satisfied with that number?
JUSTIN ROSE: I would have been, apart from 18. I hit such a good tee shot down 18. To make six just ends the day on the wrong, note but other than that, I played really well on the back nine. Got myself back in it.

I was aware of the scores and who had done what today. It was an exciting day's golf from a Race to Dubai point of view. But listen, halfway stage, I'd probably have signed up for that if somebody said on Wednesday, you would be in this position after two rounds, I'd have taken it. It's a position you can build on the weekend.

Today was a day I did leave a couple out there. But in the course of 72 holes, there's always a spell or round where you feel like you left a few out there.

Q. Is The Race to Dubai in your thoughts at all?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it creeps in for sure. I think you want to keep it out of your thoughts when you're hitting good shots. That's a recipe for good golf. Of course between rounds and at nights, it creeps in.

Q. What are you comfortable with about your game heading into your game and what are concerns you would like to correct?
JUSTIN ROSE: Short game has been strong. I missed very few greens but as of when I missed one all around the par 5s, felt like I did a good job of make something birdies and getting up-and-down. Driving the ball really well. So sharpened up some iron play and some putting. That will obviously lead to low scores. Those are the two things that you capitalize, they compound one another.

Q. Your thoughts after that round of 70 today?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, slightly frustrating round. I think if I look back at it, there were probably a lot of chances I could have taken. Could have been something three or four better. But at the same time, it's a good mark. It's a good, solid effort after yesterday and get off to a strong start puts me in great position for the weekend.

The 18th hole is the only one that really stings a little bit. But I think I figured something out with my putting. I found the greens hard to read today. Certainly found it hard reading my lines. But something I can tweak and correct over the weekend.

Q. The 18th was so out of character because you've been such an efficient golfer, especially down this stretch here; those kind of unforced errors haven't been there.
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, the 3-wood right was an unforced error, but then to compound it with a 3-putt was annoying.

It's a really confusing visual coming up 18. It's hard to see the whole putting surface and there's so much going on in the backdrop that when I had my last look towards the target, your brain takes in a lot of information. Probably wasn't clear on my target and my shot and bailed out there.

The third shot was kind of a playable one. If you played it perfect, I was a yard short of probably being six feet. So I nearly played a great third shot but maybe tried to force the putt.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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