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September 9, 2006

Justin Rose


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: At this time I'd like to welcome the 54 hole leader at the Canadian Open, Justin Rose. Good round today, 5 under 65, no bogeys on your card. Got off to a great start. Maybe a few comments about your day.

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, obviously I'm delighted with that. I mean, yeah, amazing start really. Felt pretty relaxed going out there. Had a nice three ball today with Jonathan Byrd and Sean O'Hair, two guys I know fairly well.

But, yeah, as soon as I guess hit a couple well, 1st hole, made about a seven footer for birdie, then stiffed it at the next, then holed a 15 footer at the third. Good confidence building start for sure.

JOEL SCHUCHMANN: All three of you played fairly well today. All three are in contention.

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it was a good day. Sort of some nice momentum we could build on with one another. Sean played very well the Back 9. Jonathan had a strong finish to get back in it. So, yeah, it was a good group to be playing in.

JOEL SCHUCHMANN: We'll take some questions.

Q. Correct me if I'm wrong, on your chart it looks like you played in one of the major championships in the last two years. Is that some kind of incentive issue or wake up call for you? Can you talk about that a little bit?

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah. I mean, definitely I think that's something that has been frustrating for me, no doubt. Just being outside the top 50 in the world, that's obviously key to playing those tournaments. That's what I'm certainly working hard to get back to.

I felt like majors have always in a sense brought out the best in me. I've had some good performances in the majors and I really enjoy them. Yeah, that would be a big goal of mine, to make sure I'm back in playing all of those.

Q. (No microphone.)

JUSTIN ROSE: I think by all accounts we're going to have a reasonable day's weather. How bunched that leaderboard is, I feel like my lead is not really a lead. I had a one shot lead going into the last round at Hartford about this time last year. Shot 69 in the last round, but got passed by a 61 from Brad Faxon, a 64 from van der Walt to finish one back.

It's a similar looking leaderboard. For me personally, I feel like you got to really bet that somebody just behind, like on 10 under or 9 under, is going to go out and shoot a good score, therefore I've got to go out and put a good score together as well.

Q. You've been in contention at a number of tournaments, but never won one on the PGA TOUR. Is this the perfect condition to finally break through on the PGA TOUR?

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, definitely. I think what's more exciting for me, though, I'd like just to give myself more and more legitimate chances. Obviously the more you knock on the door, eventually it's going to open.

I feel like really I wouldn't say I've given myself lots of really significant chances to win. I had two great chances to win last year. I finished one back at both Hartford and Disney. I've been in the mix only a couple of times.

For me it's still like that good fresh feeling. I'm not getting frustrated by it yet, to answer your question. I've won four times internationally. The other thing I'm trying to think about is I'm not trying to win for the first time, although it would be the first win over here. I'd like to think of it like riding a bike. Once you've done it, you never really forget.

Q. Does this remind you of playing in Europe in terms of the weather and the feel of the course? Does that help you at all?

JUSTIN ROSE: I would say, yeah, it can be reminiscent of the UK really this time of year as well, September, nice cool days. The course in some respects is similar to where I grew up playing around the Wentworth, Surrey area, Wentworth, courses like that. But, yeah, you know, you have to be adaptable with your game. Obviously, it was a windy day yesterday where you have to play some different shots. Then today, judging distance. The ball wasn't quite going as far because it got cooler. You're always adapting.

Q. You had the nice start. Can you talk about that par save on 10.


Q. That would have been fairly key, I presume.

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, having just birdied 10. I felt like I got off to a good start. Then I sort of was I was creating lots of birdie chances but not taking them through sort of from 4 to 9. I birdied 10 to get some momentum going again. As you say, I made a great up and down on 11 to keep my momentum. Then I birdied 12 straight on top of that. That was a really good part of my round to just sort of keep me going forward.

Q. There's a young Canadian boy here who is having the kind of week that you may have had in 1998 at Birkdale. Can you remember a little bit about that, what it meant to you at that age.

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I mean, for me it was obviously a huge confidence it wasn't a confidence builder because I struggled after that. It was an amazing experience and gave me the feeling what was possible with my game and things like that.

I felt, which I hope he's getting as well, an amazing support from the gallery and the crowd. They really got behind me, as I'm sure the Canadian fans are for Victor. That to me can really help you along the way. It's going to be an experience he'll enjoy obviously. Hopefully he can finish strong tomorrow.

Q. Canadians are always accused of being terribly laid back. Do you like relaxed galleries or do you feed off of raucousness?

JUSTIN ROSE: It's a nice atmosphere to be playing here. Respectful fans. I think I've been given a warm reception this week. I'm really enjoying playing in front of them. Seem to be a few people pulling for me anyway, which is nice. It's nice to play in front of fans like that.

No, you know, I'm enjoying it. Really am.

Q. As the last man out, the man with the lead, will you look at leaderboards or do you put your head down and continue with what you need to do?

JUSTIN ROSE: I think, yeah, my goal today even was to not look at leaderboards because I knew I had to shoot a good score. I think in some respects it's going to be similar to that. I think once I get into the Back 9, I'll get the feel whether I'm in the hunt or not, whether I have a good chance to win, then I'll maybe start assessing the situation somewhat.

But maybe until the 12th, 13th hole, it's pretty much just grind it out and try and make as many birdies as you can.

End of FastScripts.

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