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September 20, 2019

Paul Casey

Surrey, England

Q. Disappointing finish yesterday. How did you rebound today with such a solid round?
PAUL CASEY: Yesterday, you're right, it was 17 and sort of a half great holes, 17 and three quarter great holes. I just had to keep doing the same. I think the golf course today is difficult.

Danny Willett's playing amazing golf. Justin Rose I think has been quoted, he said the wind is easy to predict, but I have no clue what those two are doing. They are way better than me, clearly, because I thought it was difficult out there. Happy with a 69 and keeping myself in contention.

Q. Does this golf course feel a little bit different because it's being played this time of year?
PAUL CASEY: Yeah, I think it's a better golf course this time of year because we've had a full season of growth. The surfaces I think are better than when we play in May. Everything's still blooming and growing. This is optimal. When you get to this time of year, you lose a little bit of daylight, maybe the mornings are colder, but it's actually a better golf course. Yeah, so I prefer this.

Q. Such a good season on the PGA TOUR. What would it mean to win here?
PAUL CASEY: It would mean a lot. My focus is the PGA TOUR, you know that. Still have obligations over here and to come over a couple of weeks ago and win the Porsche European Open was pretty cool, one that I watched as a kid, played at various different place, one at Walton Heath not far from here.

I start my PGA TOUR season in a few weeks in Asia, but I have to try to finish my European Tour season off in style. As I keep being reminded, Ryder Cup points are starting this week. There's a lot to play for. In all honesty, I want a holiday and to sit at home and drink a bit of wine and have fun with the kids, but I can't do that. The foot is still firmly pressed down on the accelerator.

Q. How pleased with that round, after the slow-ish start the first couple of holes?
PAUL CASEY: I fond the golf course difficult today. I'm not the best morning person in the world. Some difficult pin positions, holes like 2 and 3, they seem benign but they are tricky. The wind for me was swirling. Couldn't quite nail down exactly the same direction all the time or predict where it was. Very happy with that. Played good golf the first to days, ball-striking was good. Only one blemish on the card on 18 yesterday.

Q. How quickly can you forget that? Did it spoil your evening?
PAUL CASEY: It does when it's the last. It's easy to forget it when it's early in the round. I felt like I played a really good round of golf. In all fairness, the sand was pretty wet. That area there is shaded on 18 and doesn't get any sunlight. The bunker was extremely wet. Hit it a little too hard and didn't get any spin, my fault. You know, but we move on, it's going to be 72 holes. If somebody keeps the blemishes off the card for 72 holes, good luck to them, but it's better to get it out of the way and have the double early in the tournament than too late.

Q. How comfortable are you on this course?
PAUL CASEY: Yeah, I'm very comfortable. I know this place incredibly well. You know, although it's changed obviously with the renovations in the last decade or so. But yeah, very comfortable. Local boy, local crowds. I know the grasses. Everything about this feels kind of like what is a home tournament for me. I love it. Doesn't make it easy, though. I think this golf course is difficult. You've got to play extremely good stuff. I'm always proud of the way I play when I play well around here.

Q. A lot of players say they treat each event the same. Is this week, with the home crowd, home support, tournament you've won before, Rolex Series Event, etc., how excited are you about the weekend ahead?
PAUL CASEY: I think that's the difference. Guys are right, I try to treat every event the same but it's the feeling you get. Events have different feelings and this is the Flagship Event event in Europe and obviously until we get to Dubai at the end of the year; you can't deny, treat it the same but it feels different. Something very, very special when you see it from the first tee here, and then later on arrive at the 18th green just behind us.

This tournament has a feeling unlike few around the world, and a lot of that is down to the great fans that turn up, but it's something very, very special.

Q. Right up there heading into the weekend. How do you assess your first couple of days? You look like a man full of confidence?
PAUL CASEY: I feel good. The ball-striking has been really good. Scoring is obviously not bad. A bit of a ways behind the leaders, but this is a difficult golf course, and I think a lot of guys have been struggling on it the first two days. Happy to shoot the scores I've shot and you know, really, this is just about posturing yourself for a Sunday charge.

But this is such an awesome event. It's great to be here back at Wentworth.

Q. Amazing conditions out there. The wind picked up a little bit in the latter part of your round, but there seems to be a lot of positivity to the event moving to this time of year.
PAUL CASEY: Yeah, I think so. The golf space is crowded all around the world. There's great events week-in, week-out, and this is a nice position I think for the event because you know, we stand alone pretty much. There are other events going on around the world but this is by far the biggest event going on on the planet right now.

Also, weather-wise, and then condition-wise, we had a full season of growth here and Wentworth I think plays better this time of year, it really does. The only concern is whether you get -- being in spring, the crowd is obviously amazing. People around here love their golf being so close to London.

Again, hats off to -- that's why really this tournament is so amazing; it's because we play in front of the best crowds in the world. This is basically a home event for me, growing up just down the road. I love being here.

Q. And you have that winning feeling very recently, as well. What will it take over the weekend to get that back ten years after your last win here?
PAUL CASEY: You make it sound like I'm old, which I am. It's going to take some really good golf. Last time I checked, Danny Willett was tearing the place to pieces, which amazing, because as I said, it's not an easy golf course and the leaderboard which is stacked with my fellow Ryder Cuppers. I'm going to have to play as good as I have tee-to-green. I'm going to have to make a few more putts. You know, in this day and age, guys tend not to back down, so expect those scores to keep getting further and further into the red.

Yeah, I don't know if anybody can get close to maybe 20. If they did, it's theirs and that's the goal. We are all going to have our foot down on the accelerator trying to chase Danny.

Q. What's this event meant to you in your young golfing life?
PAUL CASEY: Well, this was the event I used to come to as a kid and watch my heros like Severiano Ballesteros play, and it was really part of the reason that sort of I wanted to be a professional golfer. I've always loved this place. I've won this title around here, BMW PGA Championship, and I've also won a World Match Play around here. I feel very honoured to have a couple of golf clubs on display in the clubhouse behind us.

It's a special place for me for multiple reasons, and I hope to have a lot of friends and family out on the weekend cheering me on, as well.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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