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November 3, 2007

Padraig Harrington


GORDON SIMPSON: Padraig, you could just about save yourself four and a half hours out there and nothing has changed, other than the order in the last two groups. But it's an interesting situation, isn't it, going into the last day.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Well, you say nothing has changed. It's obviously --
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: In terms of the Order of Merit, it's becoming clear that it is likely to be one of myself or Justin coming out on top of the Order of Merit. Whether it's about me catching Justin or not, I think the guys who are now 3-over par and beyond are struggling to catch him.
So, you know, kind of it's in his hands tomorrow. It looks like one of us will finish high enough up, anyway. It was an important round still in that sense and one more round, as much as I would have liked to have done better, Justin certainly didn't bring more guys back into the tournament. I'm at least happy to play one more round with him having a four-shot lead.
GORDON SIMPSON: The first two holes showed exactly what can happen at Valderrama.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Yeah, he did play them badly and he dropped three shots. Actually played quite well and dropped three shots. It can happen. He came back very well after that, and, you know, must feel very good about his game.

Q. I heard you saying on television there that you might, by playing with Justin, you might have been watching a little bit what has happening to him. How much did what was happening to him influence your shot into 4?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: My second shot into 4, you know --

Q. You laid up on previous days.
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Yeah, but that's because of the pin position. Today the front right pin position, I wasn't going for the green again either. I was trying to hit it in the left-hand trap, which was quite an easy bunker shot.
The alternative, laying up, you know, I suppose you could hit it -- sounds like you could get it to 12 feet if you laid up but if you got it in the bunker, which is where I was trying to hit it, it's a pretty straightforward bunker shot because of the pin positions.
So all of the strategies, strategy is hugely determine by pin positions. The same hole, you change where the pin is on the green, especially that fourth hole, it's a significant change; if it's a front right pin, it's possible, you expect to get up-and-down from the left-hand trap, where with the back left-hand pin you can't get the ball on the green. So you can understand how much strategy changes depending on pin position on that particular hole. So his game wasn't affecting me there.

Q. Where did it, then?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: If anything, it was affecting me -- I played three good holes and was feeling very good about my own game and feeling very confident. If I played the first three holes badly, I probably would have laid up.
But I was pretty confident with my game there that I could, you know, hit a sort of drop-off shot off in that left-hand trap with the main emphasis, you know, if I hit it straight, go into the bunker; and if not, it will just tail off to the left half of the green, which you know, seemed like a reasonable shot to take on. If it came off, you're expecting to make birdie just because the pin position was quite easy.

Q. Where does the pressure lie tomorrow? Does it all lie on Justin to defend his lead or on you to catch him up?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Well, certainly we don't want pressure on both of us. I obviously have a certain amount of pressure -- different sort of pressure, but we both have pressure. He obviously has the pressure of defending a lead and I have the pressure of going out there and play good golf.
You know, it's very -- I'm not going to get away with not having a good day tomorrow. He could win this tournament and not have a good day tomorrow. So you know, the advantage is very much with him.

Q. But has the pressure placed a little bit more on him tomorrow then?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: There's two sides of pressure. He's got the pressure of defending and I have the pressure of going out and having to play well. It's different sort of pressure and some players like one and not the other.
But we both will be under pressure, as with Simon Dyson. He's got to think -- a lot of guys have gone under the radar this week because of myself and Justin. I was thinking that going out there today, a lot of the guys are 1-over par, you know, have had a stress-free week, nobody has really talked about them. But I think Simon has got himself into position that, you know, where he is certainly an issue in it. He's the sort of player that can play very well and go out there and do well.
But as I said, Justin is under the pressure to defend and I'm on the pressure to go out there and attack. We'll wait and see tomorrow evening who did the best job of it.

Q. How impressive was he in playing the last 16 holes 3-under after that start?
PADRAIG HARRINGTON: Yeah, it was very good. You know, he did awfully well, and you know, with his -- it's a fine return to shoot level par after that start.
GORDON SIMPSON: Okay, Padraig, I think we're done. Good luck in the final round. Thank you very much and well done.

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