April 7, 2022
Augusta, Georgia, USA
Q. Jason, 2-under 70, that's a really nice start for you. How would you categorize your play?
JASON KOKRAK: Little shaky start. Didn't hit my best drive off of No. 1, but I would say overall solid. I missed a couple putts out there, a couple chances. Bailed out on 13. But other than that, I played some nice golf.
Q. What was the -- talking about the wind and swirling a lot. Was there one difficult shot that you remember out there in the wind?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, all the way -- no. The wind picked up a little bit more on our back nine, especially there on 18. It's kind of a daunting tee shot on 18 with that wind howling out of the left.
Then my putt, I hit a good putt, and I think I got winded a little bit. I had two merchandise bags flying across at me. So I'll have to check the ruling on merchandise bags hitting the golf ball.
Other than that, the golf course is in great shape with four inches of rain. I think with this wind and sun, this course will dry out fast.
Q. What was working for you today, did you feel?
JASON KOKRAK: I hit the driver a lot better than I have been the last few weeks. I putted nicely. Speed was pretty good. Obviously the fire wasn't in the greens today, so you didn't have to be extra careful on certain putts.
I think today was the day to be a little bit more aggressive, but I think it also makes it a little bit more difficult because you can actually spin it off a lot of these greens with the false fronts and with the greens being soft and hitting some shorter clubs into these holes. Nonetheless, I'm happy with my round.
Q. These are tough conditions. How much tougher do you get the next couple of days?
JASON KOKRAK: They called for 10 to 20 today and then 20 to 30 tomorrow. A little bit firmer golf course, more wind, you're going to see some carnage out here tomorrow. This is a hard golf course with no wind whatsoever, and you throw in 30 miles an hour and a little bit of gusts, and it's going to play all we can handle.
Q. This is your third year here. Do you find yourself feeling more comfortable with every year, every round knowing where to place shots and how?
JASON KOKRAK: Absolutely. There's certain spots where I know not to miss. There's certain spots where I know it's gettable. It's just kind of recollection where some of the putts break a little bit more, the tendency to kind of lean one way or the other, but that just comes with being here a couple more times.
Q. Were any of the birdies today more significant, more important than any of the others?
JASON KOKRAK: I rolled it really nice. I didn't hit my chip shot on 10 very well. I hit a nice putt, but it just kind of hung and didn't go in there. 11, I lipped it out from like 40 feet. So that was a good, solid putt, and I ended up making it from just off the green in 12. I think that kickstarted my round and gave me a little bit of confidence.
The game feels good. I think a little bit of confidence and being a little bit more settled to start the day, we'll be ready.
Q. I'm from Cincinnati, so I can't let you go without asking you what do you think of Sean Miller being back?
JASON KOKRAK: I think he's an incredible coach. Yeah, he got in trouble, but that's thrown out the door now these days with all the new rules. But he's an incredible coach. I used to workout with him. I used to workout with some of the basketball team when I was in school. Happy to see him back. I think he's going to do great things with the program.
Q. Are you still sponsored by Golf Saudi?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, I'm still sponsored by Golf Saudi.
Q. You have some logos on or anything like that?
JASON KOKRAK: But I'm not really paying attention to anything. No questions like that whatsoever. I'm playing the Masters. This golf tournament has nothing to do with anything else.
Q. You had a good birdie look at 17. Did you think you had that one?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, you know what, I always remember that putt from kind of the right side of the green going towards Rae's Creek, that direction being a little bit quicker. With it being a new green, I had a little bit more respect for that pin. I watched Talor's putt go racing by the hole, so I gave it a little more respect than need be.
Q. And left it like a foot short, correct?
JASON KOKRAK: Yeah, it was about a foot short. Might have caught the left edge, might not have. Nonetheless, I hit it in the middle of the fairway, hit a good solid shot in there, and I just didn't hit the putt hard enough.
Q. What do you expect from yourself tomorrow?
JASON KOKRAK: Stay patient. There's going to be a lot of questionable shots. Balls might be rolling on the green depending on gusts here and there. So stay patient, take what the golf course gives you, and just try to shoot the best score you can.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports