October 8, 2020
Newtown Square, Pennsylvania, USA
Aronimink Golf Club
THE MODERATOR: We're here with Kelly Tan, who's currently atop the leaderboard after a 3-under 67. Kelly, it looked pretty comfortable for you out there. Tell us about your round today. You had a whole bunch of birdies.
KELLY TAN: Yeah. Ball-striking was really good today, and I just feel like I was hitting to the right spot, giving myself those uphill looks, and made a few nice 20 to 30-footers.
THE MODERATOR: A few nice 20- to 30-footers, that's pretty good. Tell us about those. Where did you make those.
KELLY TAN: It's going to pass my memory here. I think the first hole I was just below the hole, about 25-footer, made that one. The second hole I was -- I hit a good shot just right up the hole there, seven-footer, made that one. And I think I made another one on 4; am I right?
THE MODERATOR: So you started on 10, so 10, 11, 13, your fourth hole.
KELLY TAN: Yes, 13, I actually short-sided myself but it was not bad because I could putt it, and made like a 30-footer there. And on 18 I made probably another 30-footer. And then I crossed and I birdied 7. Yeah, I hit a nice shot there to six feet, made that one. Yeah, that was my day.
THE MODERATOR: It was a pretty good day and you've been having some pretty good days. You've been playing really well the last couple weeks. Has anything changed for you? What's the key to this renewed success in your game.
KELLY TAN: I just feel like I try to tell myself that every day I have a little goal and try to achieve them and build confidence from there. My ball-striking has been really good, and I think that's been a key and it's been giving me a lot of confidence going into the next day. Yeah, just like being where I'm at.
Q. Can I ask you what today's goal was then?
KELLY TAN: Just stay patient, take those 30-, 50-footers if you have to. It was really hard on some of the holes to take the flag out of consideration. I think I did that really well, and I'm really proud about that.
Q. In playing practice rounds here did you feel there were five birdies out there in a round?
KELLY TAN: When I come here the Sunday before this week, it was pretty wet, so it was playing really long, and no, I did not see five birdies. Just trying to make pars are good.
Q. A lot of people think the back nine is the tougher nine. To shoot 31 out there, how solid did that feel? Really crisp shots.
KELLY TAN: Yeah, shooting 31 on either nine is great. This is a tough golf course, and I just feel like, again, I hit it to the right spot and I could be aggressive on my putts and just really nice to see those long ones go in.
Q. This feels very familiar to ANA, you got off to a hot start there, too. What did you take away from that week? What did you learn?
KELLY TAN: I felt like in ANA I wasn't much off on the weekend, I was just a little off, and it just seemed like I was on the wrong side. When I didn't shoot as low there on the weekend.
^ Check but I learned a lot about just being in contention, trying to be more comfortable with that. This is something new for me. That's going to be one of the goals, just try to be comfortable, talk to my caddie out there and try and stay loose and just keep hitting our targets and just move on.
Q. There have been a few first-time winners this year. Do you take any inspiration from a Sophia Popov or a Mel Reid?
KELLY TAN: Absolutely, yeah. Winning golf tournaments out here is life-changing. Yeah, it's very emotional even when I watched them win. Yeah, it's just great. I wish I to do that one day. ^ Check.
Q. You contended last week at ShopRite, probably the last round didn't go as well as you had hoped, but what did you take out of that tournament before you came here?
KELLY TAN: Yeah, just staying in it, staying patient, and again, like I said, just want to be comfortable and not too rushy kind of thing. I think me and my caddie, we learned a lot last weekend. Hopefully we can just keep it -- play our own game this week.
Q. Speaking of staying patient, how patient did you manage to stay today considering how far the wind blew?
KELLY TAN: I think very patient. Like I said, there are a few holes where you can't really just fire at the flags and just take those 30-footers and 40-footers up the hill, and I think I did that fairly well today.
Q. You seem to be having a lot of fun and just relaxed, in a big spot like this. Is it those close calls in recent weeks that have made you more comfortable or are there certain things you tell yourself that you think about that kind of put you in this mindset?
KELLY TAN: Yeah, absolutely. The past few weeks where I was at definitely gave me a little taste of what being in contention is like, and it's nice to put yourself in that position, and I feel like it's something that you have to learn about how you react in those situations. Yeah, I think I'm in a good spot.
Q. Kelly, you played here recently in preparation for this event. How valuable would you say that experience was for you today?
KELLY TAN: Absolutely. I feel like Aronimink is one of the courses that you want to see it a few times. There's just so many things to learn about the course. I was very, very grateful that the head pro allowed me to come out, and it was just nice to get a look before the week.
Q. You had a fantastic first nine, then you made the start of your second nine, you dropped a couple of strokes. What was going through your mind at that point in time?
KELLY TAN: I mean, it's a major championship. You're going to make bogeys. I just look at it as those things are going to happen. I'm not a robot. I'm not going to hit it to a perfect spot every time. Just keep telling myself to keep giving myself chances, and I think I did that very well coming home.
Q. In the last few weeks where you were putting yourself in contention, was there one part of your game above others that's really clicked in nicely that's fueled that?
KELLY TAN: Yeah, I feel like the putter was behaving itself pretty well, so I'm very, very pleased with that, and again, my ball-striking was good, and that's how I have those birdie chances.
Q. I was just wondering how much the LPGA event in Malaysia impacted you being here today.
KELLY TAN: Oh, absolutely big-time. I mean, Sime Darby has this junior program for us -- not necessarily junior programs, but for the girls, just being able to have support like that and being able to play in Malaysia when I was 17 as an amateur, that really opened my eyes that I really want to be on the LPGA Tour.
Q. Have you ever played a round where you made this many long putts?
KELLY TAN: Probably. I mean, I don't remember.
Q. What's it like to leave here knowing that your putting is that solid?
KELLY TAN: Yeah, I mean, again, I feel great. I'm in a great spot, and I'm very, very excited for the tournament.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you so much, Kelly, great round. We'll see you tomorrow.
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