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July 27, 2007

Des Smyth


DES SMYTH: I had a decent day as conditions were very difficult. I hadn't made a birdie and I was looking like I was going to shoot 3-over par. I was reasonably happy at that stage, and then I hit a purple patch down the stretch -- that changed the whole day really.

Q. What were your thoughts on the first tee this morning with the wind blowing straight back into your face?
DES SMYTH: I was wondering whether I could reach that hole in two. I actually negotiated it pretty good. Even the downwind holes were very difficult.

Q. Keeping it in the fairways is more difficult in these conditions and you don't want to be in the rough?
DES SMYTH: Yeah, I only hit it in there twice and I chipped out twice. You can't get greedy on this golf course. You hit into a bunker you chip out; you hit it into the rough, you chip out. That's really what I did. I am nicely placed and I just hope I can play like that over the weekend.

Q. Were you secretly pleased to feel the wind this morning?
DES SMYTH: I play the wind well but I don't ever wish for it. I managed to play it because I've done it a lot and I used to it. If it blows, I would like it to blow all day. I played in difficult conditions yesterday and difficult today. I f it drops it will give the guys a hell of a break.

DES SMYTH: I am still struggling a little. I did hit a purple patch towards the end but I hit some poor shots as well. I was managing my round well hoping I might steal a birdie at 17, but I didn't envisage doing what I did.

DES SMYTH: Well, if the wind blows I would say I could actually be leading with this. But you know there's a lot of great players out there and they can play just the way I played today. I have no control over that. I can just control what I do.

Q. You had a decent run here in the last Open?
DES SMYTH: Yeah, I had. I played the opening two rounds well and played a good third round in tough conditions, but I blew it in the last. Think I shot 75 in pretty good conditions. Yeah, I've had some good times out here and these are another two.

Q. Were you able to draw on those memories today?
DES SMYTH: Well, not really, it's a number of years ago and my game hasn't been that good this year. Trying to keep as tight as I could. I am thrilled with the result, obviously.

Q. What about the chances of an Irish double after Padraig Harrington's win in The Open?
DES SMYTH: Well, I really have to play a lot of golf before that happens. I won't be thinking about until the last nine holes on Sunday, but in the meantime I am going to practice and try to play the way I have these past two days.
I am just happy for the Irish people that Padraig won as they have been backing him to win a Major for some time. Now Padraig has stood up and done I think it will get the other Europeans to do it. They needed someone to break the ice.

Q. People certainly would not begrudge you victory after pushing Tom Watson so close in Aberdeen two years ago?
DES SMYTH: Obviously I would love to win but whatever happens I need a good result because of the way I have played all year on the Champions Tour. I only have two Top 10s and I am worried about keeping my card. I need a big result somewhere along the line and this could be the place to do it.

Q. A great shot into the last. What club did you hit?
DES SMYTH: A six iron. It was a fantastic finish. I took the shot on. I hit it out to the right and drew it off the rough. I really went for a big one - I was really pumped up.

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