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November 18, 2010

Rory McIlroy


First Round 63 -7

MICHAEL GIBBONS: Rory, thanks for joining us. Your initial thoughts on a great start.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, it was a great start to the tournament obviously, going out and shooting a good first round. It's a great start, and you know, the conditions out there today were perfect for scoring early on. There was not a breath of wind and when the greens are that good in the morning, you can take advantage of it, and that's what I was able to do today. So good start and hopefully kick on tomorrow and play well again.
MICHAEL GIBBONS: Birdie at the last, one of the highlights.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, definitely. I didn't hit a great tee shot and left myself with a bit of a long shot. But I had a flyer lie, and I had 230 yards to the pin and hit a 6-iron and it came out just the way I wanted it to. Landed just on the front half of the green and landed up to about 15 feet and nice to hole a putt like that to finish the round.

Q. You've played Lin Wen-Tang since the playoff in '08?
RORY McILROY: I don't think so. That was the first time.

Q. So today was more like a revenge?
RORY McILROY: Not quite. The playoff did come into my mind when we were playing the 18th hole. But yeah, that's something I'll always remember. You know, it was one of the best experiences I've ever had on the golf course, and it was great to be a part of. Not so great to be on the wrong end of it, but it was fantastic and that will be a memory that I'll hold forever.

Q. Did you guys talk quite a bit on the 18th?
RORY McILROY: No, not really. Not really. It was sort of just -- had a bit of a chat with my caddie and just pointed out where he was hitting from and where I hit from. But yeah, it was great to be a part of, and I suppose today, playing with him and shooting a better score is a little bit of a revenge.

Q. 63 is a very low score, I'm sure you're very happy, did you leave any out there? Can you even go lower?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, I mean, you always feel as if you can do better. I really should have birdied the third hole, the par 5. I had a 4-iron into the greens, and left it in the perfect spot, just needed a nice little chip-and-run up the green, and it just ran out a little bit too much on me and missed the putt from eight feet.
So that could have been -- I let one go at 6. That was the only bogey of the day. I hit it in the trees and had to play out left-handed and then a wedge on to the green and 2-putted. So they were probably the only two holes I think that have -- I mean, there was putts obviously that I missed for birdies. But you can't have everything.

Q. How are you feeling health-wise? At beginning of the week you weren't feeling too great?
RORY McILROY: I'm feeling fine. Still a bit of a head cold. I've got a runny nose and everything. The chest is starting to clear and I'm feeling a lot better, getting a bit of energy. When you shoot 63, you're always going to feel a bit better, as well. That helps.

Q. Is that something your girlfriend did for you or a request from your female fans?
RORY McILROY: No, my girlfriend was actually very much against it.

Q. Was she surprised?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, it was just something I wanted to do. When you're back home in Northern Ireland on a cold November's day, you get quite bored. So yeah, it's something different.

Q. She wasn't there?
RORY McILROY: No, she wasn't. No. But I told her I was going to do it. It wasn't a surprise to her.

Q. If you're still up there on Sunday, obviously finished twice, it's been 18 months since you've last been on The European Tour, can you open with the pressure?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, definitely. I've won already this year, so it's not as if I haven't won recently. And so yeah it would be big for me. I don't think the fact that I haven't won a European Tour event in 18 months is going to play a part. I think it will be more trying to win this tournament because I've wanted to win it for the last couple of years, and yeah, I mean, I have to get myself into that position first, but if I am in that position, I think I'll be okay.

End of FastScripts

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