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February 2, 2007

Graeme McDowell


GRAEME McDOWELL: Didn't really get it firing today. I gave myself plenty of chances, though. I hung in there where I needed to, and yeah, I mean, the scoring is hot. You've got to be shooting 5- , 6-under par to be feeling good at all out there.
After yesterday, it's hard to follow a good roundup so I'm content with 69. I've positioned myself for the weekend. I think Ross will make birdie on the last to go to 14, so four back going into the weekend is a nice place to be.

Q. Is it a little tougher starting on the back nine knowing that you have to it had the ground running, because that's where you have to pick up your birdies.
GRAEME McDOWELL: That's a pretty good point. I think especially with a hole like 10 off the bat you feel like, yeah, there's no doubt, three par 5s on the back, you do want to rip the back nine up and you know you have a tough finish ahead of you, 4, 5, 6, the rest of the holes in, it's a tough-hole stretch.

Q. And at the same time your instinct is saying, no, no, just let it go?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Exactly. Try not to get too far ahead of myself today, keep playing solidly. Like I say give myself a chance this weekend really.

Q. So what happened with your game today that was not quite where you wanted it to be?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I'm still not driving the ball all that well which is disappointing me immensely. Just can't get comfortable with driver. I think, what's this, my 10th round of the year? And I probably came off every round, not a good driver.
My iron play is very, very solid. I feel like when I can get myself in play, I give myself a chance to really -- my iron play is very solid. I'm hitting some really good irons. Really, I guess the putts didn't drop today like they dropped yesterday. I kept giving myself that 12, 15 feet today as opposed to maybe, eight, ten feet yesterday. So it was just little bit of proximity to the hole. It was still pretty solid golf.

Q. Do you feel a little sort of tension when you're standing with the driver, is it hard to get it out of your mind that it's not going as well as it should be?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I think, you know, you want to be knowing that you're shaping the ball a certainly. With my driver, I'm kind of shaping it both ways a little bit, so I'm not really knowing what's going to come out half the time. If you're expecting a draw, you can rip it done the right half and know it's coming back, but right now I can aim in the right half. It's not very nice, believe me.

Q. Is that something you want to work on with your coach during the week of a tournament?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I think I'm going to stick with it for the rest of the year. (Laughter).

Q. But during the week of a tournament?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I'm plucking away at it. I have about six drivers in the locker at the minute. I'm trying to find the one that's going to be sort of the lesser of evils. I think everything else is flying too well for it to be a technical issue. That's how I feel with it. It's a shaft issue, I just need to keep working on it. The boys at Callaway are really being very helpful to me. They are really looking after me well and really trying to help me find the perfect driver right now.
The square one, I think I have tried it, but I was hitting the FT3 so well, I just sort of put the square one to the side. But I may have to get it back out and see what it does I really like to shape the ball.

Q. They say you wasn't shape it with the square driver?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, I can aim it down the right and hope for a draw and it can cut. I don't have a specific shape at the minute which isn't great.

Q. Talk us through the birdies?
GRAEME McDOWELL: 10, I hit driver, 3-wood just short and pitched it stiff.
14, I hit a 9-iron to about 12 feet.
18, I hit 3-wood about 25 feet by the hole, two putts.
6, I hit a decent tee shot down the right side there and it just hung up in the semi and I had 220 out of the semi, kind of blend a 3-iron, and chipped to about seven feet and just missed, first bogey of the tournament, disappointing.
Bounced back well and hit a 6-iron to about three feet on the next.

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