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July 12, 2019

Ian Poulter

North Berwick, Scotland

Q. Round of 67, 4-under par. Is it a fair reflection of your play, do you feel?
IAN POULTER: Not really. Got off to a quick start, 3-under through four, and shooting 4-under for the day is not quite good enough with three par 5s after that position. So I didn't take advantage of those from positions where I probably should have really capitalised. I did have a couple of missed putts. Overall, it's a little bit disappointing. At the minute, it's four shots behind, but I should have been closer.

Q. Obviously looking with half an eye toward next week, The Open Championship. Rory was saying how much value there is contending the week before and feeling the buzz. Do you feel the same way?
IAN POULTER: I think you have to. Even though the course is going to play different, you've still visually got the similar kind of shots that you're going to have next week. So it's all about feeling comfortable with your shot-making. It's all about shaping shots into some of these pins, which is going to help you next week.

He's definitely right. You do need to be there or thereabouts this week to feel that buzz for next week.

Q. How will you spend the next 24 hours? Going to be awhile before you tee off again.
IAN POULTER: I think it's going to be a great afternoon. We've got some fantastic tennis. The Silverton qualifying is coming up in about 51 minutes and 26 seconds, not that I've checked, and yeah, I think I might watch that. Have a bit of lunch. I might watch the qualifying. I might watch the tennis. Have a shower, rest, come out and hit some balls later on.

Q. How would you assess your play so far?
IAN POULTER: 6-under yesterday was quite nice and 4-under today was one of those days where I got off to a fast start, 3-under through four holes, and the par in amongst that was a three-putt par, so that was disappointing, and didn't take advantage of the other par 5s I had.

Looking at that, I really left a couple of shots on the course. I know 14-under was my target going out and it just happens to be that that's leading right now.

So you know, it's one of those courses when you get it going, you can definitely see a lot of birdies being made. So I know what to do over the weekend.

Q. Even with all you've accomplished in this game, I still look at you as an underdog, a former assistant pro. How much do you look at your own self that way in terms of being a fighter and grinder, even at this point in your career?
IAN POULTER: I want to win. So that, first and foremost, burns hard within, and you know, when I get in contention, when I'm playing good golf and I feel great, that kind of dog-eat type person wants to come out and play ball. That's what I'm trying all the time.

I'm comfortable with my game. I'm 43, I'm happy and I'm playing some of the best golf of my life. I want to be in the mix and I want to hang around and be a pain in the back side come the weekend.

Q. What will it take to be a pain in the backside this weekend in terms of a score?
IAN POULTER: Making plenty of birdies. Obviously you're looking at the scoreboard now. I don't know what the cut is. I'm guessing it's probably 4-under par. 14-under is leading, so you know, you're going to have to make plenty of birdies. You're going to have to make the odd eagle over the weekend and not make many mistakes.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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