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May 19, 2011

Graeme McDowell


STEVE TODD: Graeme, U.S. Open Champion playing The Open Champion, take us through the day. It must feel pretty good to obviously win that match.
GRAEME McDOWELL: I guess a slight significance with the two national Major Champions.
But there's a lot of permutations to this event between now and tomorrow afternoon. Just hugely important to win your first game really. You would not like to be relying on a result tomorrow morning or something like that.
It means I've got a little bit of a cushion going into tomorrow afternoon but it's obviously important to go and win again tomorrow. It's not quite like the Accenture World Match Play where you lose and you go home.
Here, if you lose you still have a way of proceeding to the weekend but it was nice to go and play well today, position the ball pretty well after the tee, and generally hit the ball pretty well. It's a tricky golf course, especially with the bit of the wind. There's some trouble around and you've got to play pretty sensible.
STEVE TODD: It was a good start, and you got it back at the turn and you pulled away at the end.
GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, Louis didn't really drive the ball his best on the back nine. He looked a little loose with the driver. I kept the ball in play pretty well with the big stick and really feeling pretty good on these greens, as well. The golf course was a little bit wet after yesterday and the greens were a little bit more receptive and you could throw a few iron shots in there.
You know, it's a tricky course. It's probably three of the tougher par 3s I've seen in a long time here, 220-, 230-yard par 3s downhill with a lot of trouble around the greens. Sometimes par is a good score out there and there are some birdie opportunities. So there's a little bit of everything on this golf course.

Q. Any holes won against the head, as it were?
GRAEME McDOWELL: No. 9 we tried to give each other -- I hit it in the right bunker off the tee and hit it short of the green and Louis had a pitch for a second shot and he spun it off the front. He spun it off the front again and I kind of duffed my pitch, and Louis made about a 25-footer for a four. That was kind of a weird hole.
Not really, no. Most holes went with form. There wasn't really anything particularly dramatic to report. It was a pretty standard game. It was some solid golf at times, a few loose tee shots from Louis on the back nine really but apart from that, it was reasonably solid golf.

Q. Is it physically demanding that course?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I would say 36 holes on Saturday would be. The golf course, it's not physically demanding; it's just unwalkable. You honestly just couldn't put a bag on your back and walk around that golf course. It's designed to be played on a cart.
Some of the greens back to the tees, pretty crazy. They shuttled us around and made it quite pleasant. It's really not all about a walk in the end, but like I say they are helping us out a little bit. It's not too bad at all. But like I say, 36 holes on Saturday would be kind of tough.

Q. So you wouldn't want to be the caddie going 36 on Sunday, would you?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, I'm playing in Seve's day on Monday and I was saying there, if we do go all the way this week, you probably won't see me anymore; I'll be in my bed all day Tuesday trying to recover from the weekend.
It's a tough walk for sure but I've walked tougher, like I say, because of the shuttle rides and stuff. There's definitely tougher walks than that one. They do a good job.
It's funny. It's a great golf course. They have laid out a pretty good track. It's just so disjointed because of the way the land is here. It would be an impossible walk if you're out there with your mate with no cart.

Q. Footballers always say they can't wait for the next game after a bad defeat. Is there a similar thing for you? Do you think it's good playing this week?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, for sure. I wouldn't have liked a week off to think about the way I played on Sunday for sure.
You know, I've got a couple of days in the gym this week just trying to get a little bit of life back into the legs, because they went dead on me Sunday afternoon. I really just didn't feel physically very good. I really made sure that I wasn't going to feel that way today, and I felt good today.
I feel strong today, and you know, I've kind of let myself off the hook for Sunday afternoon, because something happened to me basically. I was tired, I didn't get my nutrition right; I didn't get my hydration right; something happened to me which completely threw me off.
I have no regrets, because I knew I was as well prepared as I could be, and I knew I didn't get nervous. It wasn't pressure that got to me so just have to put it as a blip in the radar and move on. So nice to get out there today and win. Looking forward to the weekend.

Q. Have you spoken to a nutritionist about it?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I had a word with my physio this week. We agreed that I may be should have eaten something as soon as I got off the first round rather than gone back. I didn't really eat for about an hour and then tried to squeeze some food in about an hour and a half before my tee time. I probably should have eaten right away to try to get some nutrition back in the system.
It was an early start that day, up at sort of 5.00, you wolf down a quick breakfast, you play 13 holes. I probably just didn't get things 100 per cent right. And it was a hot week. You're drinking so much. It was such a hot week. It was tough to get the hydration right, as well. Just one of those things that happens.
STEVE TODD: Thank you.

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