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March 15, 2008

Graeme McDowell


MICHAEL GIBBONS: Great round, slightly disappointing finish, but overall it was a relentless day with yourself and Jeev going after it.
GRAEME McDOWELL: Obviously 6-under par through the front nine, I thought I might have a good chance to put the tournament sort of in my hands, and then Jeev ran off five straight through the turn and I realised I was going to have a fight on my hands, and threw in a couple birdies of my own on the back nine.
Certainly 8-under par standing on the 18th tee today, I wasn't expecting the tournament to be so low scoring.
Obviously very disappointing finish. Trying to cut a little 5-iron in there and double-crossed it, made six. But I mean, the way I look at it I knew Jeev and I were going to have a little bit of tussle tomorrow at some point.
So whether I'm one or two shots ahead or all-square with him, I know I'm going to have to play tomorrow to win. Doesn't change my outlook. Certainly disappointed but I feel like it's not going to affect anything tomorrow.
I know 23-, 24-under is going to win this week, so I'm fully prepared to go out and do the same again tomorrow really.

Q. Will it all come down to putting?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Absolutely. You know, obviously it's a bit wide open off the tee. I played with Edfors today and both could shift it. I don't think there's any massive advantage to be gained if you're long off the tee. Your iron play has got to be sharp but inevitably you have to putt very well.
I putted great, probably -- I'll be putting great all week, very happy the way I'm rolling it and certainly Jeev made seven birdies in eight holes I think at one point. He was 12, 15 feet all the time, and that's what it's going to boil down to tomorrow. It's going to be who holes the putts and who makes the birdies and eagles, and certainly not much can go wrong off the tee. It's good, accurate iron play and hole some putts, so I agree with that completely.

Q. Just on the same thing, putting, how difficult was it to adjust this week?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Certainly not tough to add just to pure greens. Yeah, coming off the back of Malaysia last week, some very grainy greens. I hit the golf ball tee-to-green, struck it 50 per cent better last week in Malaysia.
This week my ball-striking has been average enough but I've really enjoyed the greens. I've putted fantastically well and that was the difference last week in Malaysia, just could not quite get the hang of the greens. But it's nice to come to greens this good, they just track right in the middle. We hit good putts and they just track right in the middle there. A lot easier to read, just a very solid grain. You can see the dark white, it's a lot easier to read and you can see how the putts role.
That's kind of what makes Europe as special as it is we get to come to places all over the world and have to adapt our games every week, short games, pitching, putting especially, and this week's pretty nice and it's pretty simple. The greens are really, really pure to putt on and the ball reacts well on them and kind of similar to what we grew up on.
It's very links-style in and around the greens I feel, and obviously potential for the wind to blow here. So it's kind of got a bit of a linksy British Irish feel to it and I've liked it from the second I saw it really.

End of FastScripts�

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