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April 11, 2019

Kiradech Aphibarnat

Augusta, Georgia

KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: The front nine, get back a little bit, I didn't want to get myself in trouble. The front nine here is really important. If you get hurt a lot it just bring your confidence down. Everyone know this is really tough. I just keep myself in play. I had a lot of opportunities to putt. On 6, about 6 feet. But I came off with par.

Q. The scoring conditions, given the softness of the fairways and the greens, the pin positions seemed quite challenging?
KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: Yeah, it's some giving, and some difficult. You learn every step. You wish you make more, but I really calm and stick with my game plan so far.

Q. Walk us through the eagle at 13.
KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: I've been waiting for my first birdie for quite awhile, after 12 holes, one bogey and 11 par. On 13 end up in the right rough but quite a good number for my 3‑iron. The greens are quite soft today so I can land it in the middle of the green, into the slop, bring the ball down close to the flag. I got about 16 feet and holed the putt, which is one of the best putt so far.

Q. Obviously your third tournament here at the Masters. Are you starting for feel more and more comfortable with every round that you play?
KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: Not really, you know, some things if you go for it too much it might hurt a lot. A couple holes give a chance, but you have to be really careful.

Q. The eagle and you then you get back‑to‑back birdies, how much did that pick up the whole round to finish off strong?
KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: Yeah, I'm saying it's quite difficult to get my first birdie after 12 holes. I been hitting a couple of good shots, a couple is good putts don't go in. I keep trying, but I stay calm. I know I have to wait until the first birdie coming. And then the eagle on 13. And then just missed the birdie putt on 17, about 12 feet.

Q. 18 has been a killer for a lot of guys. Several guys tied for the lead or in the lead and dropped back on that hole. What made 18 so tough today?
KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: Well, because the wind switch now from the left, left bunker was in play. I think most of the players had to go a little bit right and then they end up under the tree on the right. And the tee was blocked away, so you had to cut around, end up on the left and end up trying to get up and down. I'm always saying you have to be to really careful, you have to learn every shot, every hole, every player out here have to learn. The greens are really difficult. The rain made the greens soft a little bit. So made a couple of birdies out there.

Q. How does it feel to be in the position you're in, a couple of strokes off the lead going into the second round? It's good to be in that position.
KIRADECH APHIBARNRAT: Really happy with the way I start. 3‑under, and here it's not easy at all. I know it's a couple score behind, but I was saying it is almost one of the best round for me. I'm not very sure, but I think my first year I shot 5‑ or 6‑under on the last round. But you have to be solid every single shot, hole the putts. I'm always saying, this course can hurt you a lot.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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