May 22, 2021
Kiawah Island, South Carolina, USA
The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island
JOHN DEVER: We are joined by Gary Woodland, who posted an even par 27 today, 2-under par for the championship in a T6 position. Pretty good round, a trio of tough spots but really ending on a good note.
GARY WOODLAND: Yeah, it was a big battle there to finish. That was really nice. Kept myself with a fighting chance tomorrow.
I played really well today outside of driving. I just drove the ball as poorly as I have in a long time and gave myself three bad positions there and made three doubles.
But fortunately I made a lot of good swings, when I got the ball in play, I played really well and six birdies to offset that. Happy with where I'm at. Obviously nice to finish the way I did, birdie, birdie, par, to give myself a chance tomorrow.
So I can go fix that, get dialed back in because I've been driving the ball beautifully so I was a little frustrated today but still have a chance tomorrow and that's what we want.
Q. Is that scorecard the result of like no holding back and going for it?
GARY WOODLAND: Yeah, no quit. I knew coming in I was playing really well. I knew I had a chance; this golf course is brutally hard. It definitely softened up for us today. I think there was a little humidity so the greens were very receptive so you could get definitely the golf course today. I don't anticipate that being the big case with the wind out of the other direction and blowing a little harder.
You knew today you had to make birdies and unfortunately I made some big numbers but offset that with still a chance to play tomorrow and that's what you want. You want a chance to win on Sunday and I definitely have that tomorrow.
Q. You've won a major before, so does it feel familiar?
GARY WOODLAND: Yeah, it does. Getting up this morning, being in contention felt great. I know my game is good enough, and I think that's a big deal. I can rely on what I did at Augusta almost two years ago now at Pebble, but I think the big deal now is the confidence. Come out, play aggressive, play like I've been playing. I'll fix the driver right now but I'll be ready to go tomorrow.
Q. How tricky is this golf course, the wind was down a little bit but it seemed like everybody is kind of guessing still, not pulling clubs with confidence all the time?
GARY WOODLAND: It is. The last two days the wind's pretty much been pretty set. Today it was kind of moving a little bit, so it made more difficult blowing as hard. It was a little difficult trying to judge the wind a little bit.
But the golf course was I think more receptive today. I think the humidity or something, the greens were just a little bit softer. I haven't seen really many pitch marks all week and saw a lot of pitch marks today on the green.
You definitely had a chance to make birdies today. The wind out of the other direction tomorrow will be a whole new beast, but I need that. Being five back right now, I think I need to wind the blow a little bit, and hopefully it does that tomorrow.
Q. What's the chatter when a 50-year-old is leading this tournament? How much are you appreciating what he's doing out there?
GARY WOODLAND: I think any time Phil shows up, you appreciate what he's doing. He's been -- I've been out here now 13 years, and he's been obviously one of the best players in the world since then.
But he's phenomenal. He's entertaining. And what he's doing, that gives everybody hope. I want to play this game for a long time, but what he's doing right now coming out and beating up on the other guys, on this golf course, too, it's very impressive. But any time you've got a short game like his and the confidence he has, it's not surprising.
JOHN DEVER: Walk us through that dart on 17; what club did you hit and what were you feeling off the tee.
GARY WOODLAND: Coming off birdie there on 16, obviously the pin was over on the left. So with the wind off the right, I like to cut it. It was one where I could just aim right at the pint and just hold it right there. It was a perfect 6-iron, just choked it up a little bit, and knew I had a lot of adrenaline coming off the birdie on 16. So I did choke it up a little bit and hit a perfect shot right at the flag.
That green is probably a little rough compared to the rest of them. I think they had a disease or something on it. So it's nice to get it in there close so you don't have to make a putt. That was a big boost, and then the par save on the last was massive for me to give myself a better chance tomorrow.
JOHN DEVER: Thank you, Gary. Rest up and we'll see you tomorrow.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports