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July 9, 2009

Rory McIlroy


Q. A day when you took advantage of the par 5s, 4-under for three of those, how do you feel about the day overall?
RORY McILROY: It was okay. I played the par 5s well which basically made up most of my score. It was just a day I was sort of making pars and sort of trying to stay patient, and hit it close a couple of times but didn't make them. It was okay. 3-under is not a bad score out there. It was pretty good. I think the wind is going to come up this afternoon, so hopefully it will hold out pretty good.

Q. Is this a golf course you fancied your chances when you saw it in practice?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, good memories. I've played here twice already. I played in 2005 as an amateur and then played last year and finished in the top 20 last year. So had a nice 66 in the third round, so good memories. It's a course that I feel as if I can go low on.

Q. Seeing you out there in the tartan trousers, you are not dressing yourself this week. Tell us about that.
RORY McILROY: No, I'm not. We basically thought it would be a fun thing to do. I haven't got a clothes sponsor at the minute so we just said what, would people like to see me in, and because it was the Scottish Open, I thought I would go for some different tartans this week.
So I've got -- I think -- I don't know what ones these are but I've got a McIlroy tartan, a Loch Lomond tartan, a Forever Scotland tartan which is quite nice, and I've got a McDonald's tartan, as well. It was just something fun we could do for the Web site.

Q. Any comment from Mr. Poulter?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, with he were both on Twitter Tweeting each other last night trying to outdo ourselves. It was quite funny. He sent out a couple of pictures of him ironing his trousers this morning and stuff, so we had a bit of fun with it.
Got off to an iffy start, didn't hit the best tee shot on the 10th hole, my first, but got my way into it gradually and a nice eagle on 13 and things started from there. I struggled a little bit today but I made my score on the par 5 which is always very handy, and 68 is a pretty good score.

Q. Really crowd-pleasing couple of groups and you were in one today with Ian and Lee, but what was the reaction to the trousers?
RORY McILROY: Just trying to get a bit more support. Yeah, it was great. Just a bit of fun. We ran a competition on the Web site just to see what people would like me in, and obviously it's the Scottish Open and there was a few suggestions of tartan that came in and may as well go with it and it's a bit of fun. I made a couple of jokes with Ian out there as well, so it's quite fun as well.

Q. This is a real build-up for you, a key build-up to the Open Championship, which I believe will be your first as a professional, an exciting time for you surely.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, great. It's going to be my third major as a professional, and I've done well in the majors this year. I've been pleased with my results. I had a 20th at the Masters and finished 10th at the U.S. Open. If I can keep that progression going, hopefully mean a first next week.
I feel as if I'm playing well enough. I took a week off last week so I'm still sort of building up gradually but hopefully by the time Turnberry comes around I'll be in great shape.

Q. A nice, steady start really, took advantage of an early start?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, it was nice to eagle the 13th, which was my fourth hole, and then you know, it was pretty steady from there. I made one bogey on the first hole and birdied the par 5s on the front nine, so there was nothing really dramatic or spectacular out there. I was just very solid and it could have been a couple better but 68 is not a bad first round.

Q. Fairly stress-free golf?
RORY McILROY: I'm still getting back into it. I took a complete week off last week, so still trying to build up. There was a few things that I felt a little uncomfortable with out there, but for the most part, it was pretty good.

Q. How much of this week do you have next week in the back of your mind?
RORY McILROY: I mean, I'm not trying to play different shots that I wouldn't necessarily -- I'm fairly concentrating on this week.
But the best preparation for next week is if you get yourself into contention this week and feel the adrenaline and feel the pressure of trying to come down the stretch. If I can get myself into contention this week, it would be perfect preparation for next.

Q. Everyone is asking about your trousers, playing with Poulter today, looks like you've taken him on leg for leg.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, I seen them, they arrived Tuesday before the draw and I said, oh, God, I hope I'm not playing with Poulter; and what happens. It was quite funny. We were both on Twitter last night and giving each other a bit of schtick about them and he was sending pictures ironing his trousers and stuff. It quite funny but hopefully I out-did him in the trousers, so it wasn't too bad.

Q. You're going to be in tartan all week, are you, for the Scottish Open?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, it was just a fun thing we ran through the Web site just to see what my fans would like to see me in, and because it's the Scottish Open, there's no better way than to wear a tartan and hopefully that will give me more support as well.

Q. Will we see it again next week if it pays off this week?
RORY McILROY: If I play well, then there's no reason why I shouldn't be wearing them next week, so we'll see.

Q. Eagle on 13?
RORY McILROY: I had a good drive up the left side of the fairway, I had 230, 232 to the pin and hit a 3-iron to three feet.

End of FastScripts

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