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May 23, 2008
VIRGINIA WATER, ENGLAND
RODDY WILLIAMS: Paul, very well played there, fantastic back nine, which I believe sets a new low 36-hole record here in the BMW PGA Championship, so a fantastic day's golf.
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, I'm obviously pleased. I'm more than pleased. It was a great finish to my round, a great back nine, holed some great putts, and you know, it was great. What more can I say? I felt I played quite nicely all day and I holed some putts on the back nine and that was the difference.
RODDY WILLIAMS: Not a bad way to follow up a good evening last night, as well, with Celtic winning.
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, it's been a good week so far. Yeah, it's been a great week. Celtic did well last night.
RODDY WILLIAMS: You have a nice, healthy lead going into the weekend at the moment, we'll see how things progress later on but are things are looking good at the moment.
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, thing are looking good so far, I'm long enough in the game to realise there's two long days ahead of me. When you go out in front early in the tournament like I did yesterday and leading the tournament, it's a long week. Everybody will tell you that. And I'm prepared for a long week. It's a marathon still. We're only halfway through the marathon.
Q. Conditions quite different today from yesterday?
PAUL McGINLEY: Conditions were a lot softer today. What was the scoring like today? Was it better than yesterday? Conditions obviously the greens were very soft today compared to yesterday; so it wasn't as tough a test to be honest as I thought yesterday was. Was certainly not as fiery. Greens were receptive.
My third shot to 17, finished six feet from the pin today with a 9-iron, and yesterday coming out of the rough that would have been careening off the back of the green. Which he can check, in fact, I would have hit a club less and tried to bounce it off the front; that just shows you how much more easier it is when you can hit it out of the rough and stop it.
Q. Details of 18?
PAUL McGINLEY: 18 was a drive and a 3-iron, 20, 25 feet.
RODDY WILLIAMS: Could you give us the details of the rest of your card.
PAUL McGINLEY: First I hit 3-wood off the tee and actually hit it too far and went down on the downslope and I had a hard left-to-right lie and expected it cut it and didn't cut it and hit it on to the second tee box ask didn't get up-and-down. So next one, the birdie on 4 was a driver and a 5-iron to 40 feet, two putts.
No. 7 was a 2-iron and a pitching wedge to six feet.
No. 9, a drove it behind the tree and didn't get enough hook on my second shot into the bunker, out to six feet and missed it.
No. 10, this is when the putts started. No. 10, I holed about a 25-footer.
No. 13, I holed a 20-footer, driver and 6-iron.
5, 40-footer up the hill; 2-iron 4-iron.
17 was a 6-footer was I say 9-iron third shot.
And driver was driver and 3-iron and about a 20-foot putt.
Q. Have you ever felt as comfortable with a putter and what does it do to you mentally when you start holing putts like that?
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, I have felt just as comfortable with the putter, I have. It's not like all of the sudden the hole is the size of a bucket. I'm rolling the ball towards the hole and it's going in. Everybody knows these greens are difficult and the ball does snake a bit on them.
But I'm not overconfident with the putter. I feel I'm in control of what I'm doing and I'm rolling the ball at the hole and it's going in.
You know, I feel like I've putted quite well this year without actually holing a whole lot. So there's no real X-secret if you know what I mean but the fundamentals that I'm working on my putting are the same fundamentals are the same I've been working on the last seven months with Paul Hurrion. There's nothing changed there. I feel like I've putted well in several tournaments without holing a lot.
Obviously they are going in a lot so far the last two days if and I'm going to contend on the weekend I have to get them to go in on the weekend.
Q. What's the difference in your putting method?
PAUL McGINLEY: Biomechanics. The putter is made for me TaylorMade made for me, based on Paul Hurrion's recommendation for my biomechanic point of view. I think he does it with all of the guys he works with. Padraig obviously was his main guy. Bradley Dredge, Phil archer. That's what attracted me to him was the success he's had with other players.
And he's had a good change. There's no way I could change my golf swing as much as I've changed my putting, it is actually quite different from what I used to putt like before in terms of technique.
Q. I was going to ask when is the last time you felt so good after two rounds of a tournament?
PAUL McGINLEY: British Open last year. I felt I really played well that British Open. I felt I didn't get the reward at the end of the week with an 18th place finish with the quality of golf I played that week.
Q. Do you feel that you're an unlucky player in some ways that you hit a lot of crossbars and goalkeepers?
PAUL McGINLEY: No, as I said yesterday, the game doesn't owe me anything. I've got to keep doing what I do, and at the end ever my career I can look back on it and reflect on things. But I think there's a lot more to go before I can start reflecting on my career of what's happened or whether I've been unlucky or whether I haven't. Any guy who has had an opportunity to hold a winning putt in The Ryder Cup and then to hole it, it's very hard to say he's not lucky.
Q. I was going to say, you weren't at the Masters, so was there a real adrenaline pump coming into this, that it was such a big week for you this year?
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, I'm not in the majors. Ryder Cup status doesn't get you in the majors. I have got to pre-qualify for the British and I have got to pre-qualify U.S. Open and I wasn't in the Masters and I haven't got an invite yet for the US PGA. I've fallen like a stone but because I had no big finishes I plummeted down the World Rankings. So finishing 20th, 30th, 40th in a tournament every week you're going to plummet every single week.
(Mobile phone ringing) Can somebody answer the phone, please.
Q. Have you ever actually fallen out of love with golf all together?
PAUL McGINLEY: No. No, I haven't. I've got frustrated, of course I have. No, no, I love the game. I love the challenge of the game, particularly yesterday. That was fantastic. To me that's what the game is all about. Hoylake is probably the best British Open I've ever played in for the same reason. I thought the skill factor required to play around Hoylake because it was bone hard was absolutely phenomenal. And the most talented player in the world won, and by not using his driver it shows how good he is because he's got that much skill.
To me that's a real true test of golf and a test of patience because you're going to get bad bounces as well, too, and that should be as big a facet in the game as anything else as I said yesterday about course management.
I think that's what the future of golf should be. I really do.
Q. Do you understand other players not liking this course?
PAUL McGINLEY: Of course. A lot of them haven't grown up on this kinds of course. They have no idea what it was like. They had no idea what it was like ten, 15 years ago before irrigation came in and what golf courses were like. They were rock hard. Talk to Peter Alliss about when he played around here, I'm sure he'll tell you stories about it being absolutely bone hard.
So yeah, I can understand that point of view. It's a logical argument and anybody who has the other side of the argument, you know, I can understand totally their point of view. This is my point of view, Paul McGinley's, and it's not critical of anybody else's point of view. This is just my opinion of what the game should be about.
Q. And not liking it so much that they don't even come to the championship; Padraig not playing in the past because of his record this year and Ian Poulter this year.
PAUL McGINLEY: I'm not going to talk about other players. They do according to what they do best and I'm certainly not going to be critical of their decisions. Everybody makes their own decisions based on what they believe and what they see.
Q. Two or three years ago when you had that great match play and you predicted at the time that you expected your game to go forward from that and it didn't, was that a depressing period for you?
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, very much so. I got to 19th or 18th in the world I think right after I won the Volvo Masters, and as I say, I plummeted like a stone by making all the cuts nearly but finishing 20th, 30th, 40th; and it's amazing how quickly you go down the rankings without any big finishes so of course it was disappointing, hugely disappointing.
Last year particularly I took stock at the end of the season like I said yesterday.
Q. What's been the big difference this week in terms of preparation for this tournament?
PAUL McGINLEY: No different. As I say I've been preparing all year the same way I prepared this week. I'm getting to the golf course earlier, I'm doing more stretching, I'm an old man now; I've turned 40, so I feel I need to loosen out a lot more than I used to.
That's really it. There's no other preparation. I did a company day on Monday. I played here two weeks ago on my week off, the week of the Italian Open, so I only had the Pro-Am to play in here, so I played in the Pro-Am, took Tuesday off, did some gym work and kept loose and played the Pro-Am Wednesday.
Q. Would you settle for a 13-under par now after 72 holes?
PAUL McGINLEY: I don't know what the conditions are going to be like, but no, to be honest, probably not.
I don't know what the conditions are going to be like. This golf course can change so radically so quickly. We're in a transition period now where it's going from rock hard and fiery to if this weather comes in, it's going to be quite the opposite, you know, probably by the end of the weekend.
So I'll just have to wake up tomorrow morning and I'll worry about that tomorrow morning and see how much rain fall has happened and see what the course is like and get stock again tomorrow.
Q. You've proved it you can play it either way, the last two days.
PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, it still was a bit fiery today. It still was irons off the tee and I'll probably change the setup of my bag tomorrow and leave a club out and leave one of my long irons out maybe and maybe put in a 5-wood, if the course is going to soften up, or maybe put my extra wedge back in again. All of those factors, I'll worry about that in the morning.
Q. Do you feel it's better for you if it stays fiery?
PAUL McGINLEY: Of course, yeah. I love these fiery conditions, yeah, I do. Of course, yeah, that's quite clear.
But I love Wentworth anyway it is to be honest. I've played the World Match Play when it's soft here in October and I've loved that as well, too. I'm a lover of Wentworth. My preference is when it's fiery. I think it's more of a challenge when it's fiery but I also like it when it's soft.
Loch Lomond is a soft golf course and to me that's a magnificent golf course as well, too. We manufacturer play that fiery but that's an absolutely magnificent course, so I'm not totally against by any means, long soft golf courses, far from it. Loch Lomond to me is one of the great golf courses in the world and that is never, ever firm; it's always soft. It not that I'm disregarding those and criticising those; they have their place and they are fantastic tests of golf. You're asking me for my preference; my preference is fiery because I think it asks more of the golfer.
RODDY WILLIAMS: Paul, it's going to be an exciting weekend ahead, thank you.
End of FastScripts