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July 24, 2018

Ben Silverman

Oakville, Ontario, Canada

THE MODERATOR: We'll start here with Ben Silverman at the 2018 RBC Canadian Open. Ben's coming off a top 20 finish at the bash sol championship last week. This is your first RBC Canadian Open as a tour member. You did make a start in 2014. But if we could get an opening comment on how it feels to make a start in your national home event?

BEN SILVERMAN: Yeah, I'm really excited to be here this year. I remember back on that 2014 event in Montreal when I Monday qualified. I was a nervous wreck. Before the tournament started, I wasn't even thinking about scores. I was just, at the time, trying to come up with a mental plan to get through the tournament. So it's so different now. I feel comfortable, I feel like I belong, I'm ready to come out here and try to win. So it's a totally different feel.

Q. So last week you shot a 65 in the final round which tied your career low. So you must have a lot of confidence coming into this week. Could you speak to that a little bit?
BEN SILVERMAN: Yeah, my game is in really good shape right now. I've got good control of the driver, and irons and putter always feels good, just coming into it with a lot of confidence. I wish the rain delay didn't happen on Sunday night because I was on such a heater. But it is what it is, happy to shoot 7-under on Sunday and come can in 12th. So it's good momentum coming into here.

Q. So the game's in good shape, you're feeling confident. Right now you stand number 135 in the FedExCup standings. What would a good week this week do for you in your confidence moving forward for the rest of the season?
BEN SILVERMAN: A good week locks up my card. Allows me to plan my schedule ahead of time next year, so I don't have to travel like a crazy man. I can play maybe 22 events a year instead of 32, which would be fantastic. So, yeah, I know what I have to do this week, but I'm not looking at how many points I need just to get that 125. My goal is to come in here to win.

Q. How big of a deal for Canadians to play in event and win? I mean, obviously the Open and the British, but this event for a Canadian?
BEN SILVERMAN: I'm pretty sure there hasn't been a Canadian-born winner in the last -- I don't know if ever. How many? 60, 60-plus years. Yeah, so I know it's been a long time. It hasn't been anybody that's living, I think, that's won that's a Canadian-born player. So I want to be the first, for sure.

Q. Is there an added pressure than any other event?
BEN SILVERMAN: No. It's just one of my goals. Like my career is not going to be riding on it whether I win this or not. But it's just one of my goals that I want to do, and I feel like it would maybe put me on a platform amongst Canadian be golfers to be recognized the way Mike Weir is.

Q. When was the first time that you saw Glen Abbey? Was it today?
BEN SILVERMAN: The actual golf course? This morning.

Q. What was your first impressions?
BEN SILVERMAN: First impressions, I like it. It's in great shape. Most of the front nine seems pretty gettable in terms of distance. It's not that long compared to some other courses on tour. So I feel there are going to be a lot of scoring clubs and birdies. The greens seem pretty receptive right now, if there's any rain at all, it will probably be a bunch of birdies out there. So maybe I'm used to it from last week, so it will be all right.

Q. In terms of this year overall, away from the golf course, how much adjustment or learning have you had to do, traveling with a young family and going a lot of places that you maybe haven't ever been before?
BEN SILVERMAN: Yeah, every week is a new week, a new experience, it seems, because we're going to a lot of the same places. Jack just turned one, so Morgan and I kind of had a little birthday thing for him last week. We're doing same -- I wasn't in New York for her family for his birthday, but we're seeing some of my family this week. So you've just got to adjust. That's why I was saying 22 weeks on the road would be great, instead of 32, so we can have some time to relax, go home because it can be kind of hectic. But you just roll with it.

Q. You were one of 21 Canadian golfers playing in this championship. Can you comment on what it must feel like as a Canadian golfer right now to be in such a successful, you know time in Canadian golf?
BEN SILVERMAN: I think that's great. 21, I didn't know it was that high. Before I was in this tournament, I remember when I was a junior or in college looking to see who all the Canadians were in the Canadian Open. So to be one of them that was a regular PGA TOUR member, I feel very ecstatic and pleased with my position. I'm just happy to be able to represent Canada in this tournament.

Q. Could you speak to the camaraderie among the Canadian players out here.
BEN SILVERMAN: We all gravitate towards each other. I was in, last week, for example, rain delay. Rain delay upon rain delay, and I was one of the first ones in. But after half an hour, I look over and David Hearn, Corey Conners, and Matt are all sitting next to each other chatting. I'm like, What's up, guys?

It's like we always kind of gravitate towards each other. I think that's what you do when you're an international playing in a different country. You just go find guys from the same place you are.

Q. One difference between 2014, and 2018, also, it's not Toronto, you're a GTA guy. How does that make it different for you at all? Do you approach it all the same way? I have a question about your final round yesterday.
BEN SILVERMAN: So I'm very excited to be in Toronto. I've always wanted to be able to have a home crowd, so here I can. I've got lots of family, friends, cousins, people I golfed with, people that were my teammates on the McCovey team in 2013. I know there are going to be lots of people coming out, so I'm excited for it.

But at the same time, my head's going to be down inside the ropes and I'm going to be playing like it's any other tournament.

Q. Can you talk about the final round and the rain delay? Because I think 7-under through nine holes, and then you got a stop. Are you thinking at that point you knew the weather is coming, or are you thinking maybe we're going to get more in? I'm going 10, 11 under? And how do you try to get back out there in the middle of such a hot round when you've got to start it up again from scratch?
BEN SILVERMAN: Yeah, it was 7-under through 10. I managed to get 10 holes in. I finally got the putter rolling. I had been hitting it well all week, and finally the putts started to go in, one after the next. I saw a little rain cloud rolling in in the distance. But I didn't think it was going to be anything severe. We still had daylight. We still had over an hour of daylight, so I'm ready to go. Ready to lineup my putt, and they blow the horn. I was like, come on. But I made the putt anyway right after they blew the horn. And the next morning, it just wasn't the same feel. I tried focusing. Tried remembering the same feels I was having on the green or setting up all my shots as Sunday night, but it was just slightly different, wasn't quite there. Couldn't quite get it going again.

Q. It was more than a year ago, but it's the Springfield event which catapulted you to here. Can you speak to your success? Tom obviously the success that you've had coming off the Web.com from last season and coming out here and playing well?
BEN SILVERMAN: Yeah, I see, I look at Austin, and some of the other guys that just came off Web Tour now pretty much locked up their card for next year. It's a huge motivator that I'm not there yet, because well, I finished tenth in the regular season. I knew what I could do at the end of the year in that stretch of tournaments where I won, and had two other top 10. I see other guys doing it that are just rookies, and it makes me want it even more, which I think might have sparked last week.

Q. That last round Sunday last year, it was a whirlwind of a day. It was so much guys, talk about just winning that event to catapult you to the tour?
BEN SILVERMAN: Same kind of deal as how I felt last night, actually when I was just pouring in putts. I shot back-to-back rounds of 9-under when I won there in Springfield. That was a birdie fest where you had to go low. So was last week, and I had that same feeling going. But the rain wasn't in my favor, and I kind of got iced a little bit. I'm going to try to get back in that mindset right away. Ball striking still feels great. Everything feels great.

So it's a matter of the speed and the lines matching up on the greens. As soon as I got a couple putts rolling, I could get right back on that run.

Q. Did you say you played the entire course today?
BEN SILVERMAN: No, I actually didn't even play this morning. I just walked nine holes with a wedge and putter. I was a little too tired to make any swings. I'm actually only going to have nine holes of practice going into Thursday after the Pro-Am tomorrow.

Q. I was going to ask you about the 18th hole, but you haven't played it, right?
BEN SILVERMAN: I have no idea what it looks like. I just heard about guys running drive through the water when it was firm. But apparently it's not that firm now, so I don't need to worry about it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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