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September 3, 2011

Ernie Els


Q. What a brilliant round of golf you just had with a great birdie to finish up your round at No. 9. Your thoughts from today?
ERNIE ELS: Well, I'm obviously very happy. I've been working quite hard to get some kind of game going, and it seems like I've got it going a bit now. The putter is starting to cooperate a little bit better.
I love the golf course. The golf course is in great shape. The greens are probably the best we've putted on all year. If you can have a stroke going, you can make some putts. I had a nice day today.

Q. Good body language. You can tell that you're playing with great confidence. Did you come into this second round with any different mindset?
ERNIE ELS: Well, yesterday was kind of a day when I just had to try and keep it together. I was never really close to the hole. I was a bit uncomfortable with my swing. So yesterday was a big day. And then today I felt I needed to get off to a good start. Besides that, I was 2-under through my front nine, and then I missed quite a few makeable putts around the turn, but I kept my patience and then they started going in.
Mindset was to get a low one, and I'm glad to have done that.

Q. Were the conditions tougher at all today? It seemed a little bit breezier.
ERNIE ELS: Yeah, different breeze, too, from the southwest, and it was a little gusty down there now and again. But still perfect playing conditions. Yeah, on some of the second shots you had to be careful.

Q. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this might have been the first time you've played for your Playoff life. I'm sure it's not a position you'd like to be in, but you're performing pretty well. Putting any pressure on yourself or are you sort of free-wheeling?
ERNIE ELS: Yeah, there's pressure, and this is maybe something that I needed. It's almost like a life-and-death situation. I know it's not, but in golfing terms. So if you don't really well play, you don't advance. That's probably what I needed to get my game back in shape. I've really worked hard on all aspects of my game. I feel like things are really starting to fall into place now.

Q. What's been the biggest difference?
ERNIE ELS: The putter. I'm starting to feel more comfortable with the belly. I must say, I worked on my swing again this week and am really swinging nicely. I'm feeling quite well.

Q. How long has it been since you didn't play in Atlanta?
ERNIE ELS: I missed it once or twice, I think. I think in -- was it '98 or '99 I missed, and then 2001 or something. But that's my goal to get there. When you've made Atlanta you've had a good year, so I'm trying to get to that week.

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