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July 28, 2011

Graeme McDowell


GRAEME McDOWELL: Striped it straight down the middle on the first, looking at a birdie chance straightaway and then nothing really happened.
It was a funny day. I didn't really hit it in the fairway enough times today. I just wasn't missing it by much, but you know, a couple of yards just kind of took the control out of my hands coming into the greens.
The golf course is playing a lot longer this year, not as much fire in the fairways and you can tell by the scoring that it's not quite as straightforward as it was last year. You go into the greens with a lot more club in your hand and just didn't make much on the greens, either. It was a mediocre day all around. Like I say, a little off of the tee and I just couldn't quite get it close enough to the hole on the greens.

Q. You had the back-to-back birdies on the back which got you back into it; was there a feeling you might get under par?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Absolutely. Birdieing 14 and 15 to steady the ship with a two-shot par 5 ahead of me. I just blocked my tee shot on 16 and hit it a yard into the gorse and made bogey there.
A disappointing way to finish the round and should have done better, but it was kind of there or thereabouts today, nothing disastrous I suppose, not the ideal start, so not out of it by any means. A long way to go and like I say, scoring was not exactly really good this morning.

Q. You did say at the start of the week that you felt that you were playing well enough to win, and you're still -- notwithstanding the fact that you have 72, but do you still think you can win?
GRAEME McDOWELL: It's not about winning. It's about putting myself into position on the weekend. There's a long way to go before we can start talking about winning this golf tournament. A lot of good players ahead of me and I've just got to go out tomorrow and get myself into the red and give myself a shot going into the weekend.

Q. A little stiff earlier on?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I was. My lower back was a little stiff earlier on. Just woke up a little bit like that this morning -- well spotted there, physiotherapist (chuckling). He's good, isn't he. The old body was a little tired this morning.

Q. It was a great tee shot down the first?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Yeah, I don't know where that came from. Actually struck my driver good today. I just, like I say, I didn't control it very well. Plenty of length, but like I say, just kept missing them by a couple of yards here and there.
The rough, it's kind of lush and wet and heavy, and you've got to hit some fairways to give yourself a chance to control going into the greens. That was good. Nothing disastrous. I hit a lot of decent shots, and nothing really too destructive.

Q. Do you need physio before the round?
GRAEME McDOWELL: I get some physio before the round anyway, but like I say, my lower back stiffness was something that I feel from time to time, it generally loosens out but didn't really loosen out this morning and I got a little stuck because of it with a few iron shots. I wasn't clearing my body very well. But nothing sort of -- it's not alarm bells. Just a little bit of stiffness.

Q. What caused it?
GRAEME McDOWELL: Probably just slept funny.

Q. If you slept at all, you're lucky, in this town.
GRAEME McDOWELL: Is that right? I know, I stayed out of Killarney last night. You have to in this town. It's a great spot, isn't it. I might have a couple medicinal pints tonight just to loosen the back.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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