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September 15, 2011

Justin Rose


JOHN BUSH: We'd like to welcome Justin Rose into the interview room here at the BMW Championship after an 8-under par 63, tying the open-round record at the BMW Championship. Just a great round of golf. Comment for us, please.
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I mean, certainly probably didn't expect that going out there today. I looked to the weather, looked at the temperature, and I thought today was going to be a day to hang in there. Little did I know I was about to play so well. Certainly my best round of the year by a long, long way, and could have been top five, top ten rounds I've ever played for sure. That was really, really good out there.
Struck the ball, once again, as good as I think I've ever hit it. I think I hit 14 fairways out there, only missed two greens, and that was about as good as I could do.
JOHN BUSH: Really consistent start to the season those first few months. Talk a little bit about your season as a whole, though, and main turning things around at the Barclays just a couple weeks ago.
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think at the beginning of the season I was playing really, really nice golf and through the Florida Swing and into the Masters I played some of the best golf I've ever played. Really felt that with a decent putter I would have won a couple of those tournaments. But momentum didn't really -- I can't catch fire when I played my best golf, and I think from that moment on it's just a little bit hard to get momentum again, didn't play quite as well through the summer.
But feel like I'm sort of feeling good about things once again. Like you said, played pretty well at the Barclays. Last week was a little bit of an anomaly, didn't quite make things happen at all; had a tough week picking clubs. I thought it was pretty tricky last week.
But today -- had a little tune-up with Sean Foley actually on Tuesday and really cleaned up a couple things in my golf swing and it was really nice to see the results straightaway today.

Q. What's the difference? What did you clean up?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, just basically the line of the club at the top of the backswing, just got a little bit more on line instead of a little bit laid off. When I have it a little bit laid off, I can throw it quite quickly on the way down. When I have it nicely in the slot at the top of the backswing, the club just falls down nicely into the ball. We just spent about an hour on that, and it feels pretty easy. I'm sort of managing to do it with a nice, simple thought, and I think that's the key, is if you can take simple thoughts from the range, that's how you're going to take them to the golf course.

Q. Obviously winning would take care of everything, but coming in, how did you approach your position in the standings? Do you know where you stood? Do you know what you needed to do to advance? Do you focus on any of that stuff at all?
JUSTIN ROSE: You know, I didn't really know what I needed to do. I don't know what I need to do. I think I've -- with the mindset I've got nothing to lose this week. That's my strategy. That's my attitude. Right now I'm not going to Atlanta. Everything -- I've got everything to gain this week. That's really the way I'm seeing it. Guys who are 26, 27, 28, 29 who have played well all year, they might be pretty tense this week because, one, they feel they deserve to be in Atlanta, et cetera, et cetera. For me I still feel like I can make it a great year.

Q. Could you talk a little bit about the golf course? Obviously some guys like it more than others, but your thoughts on the course and how it sets up for you and your game?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think they've done a phenomenal job getting this golf course in the condition that they have. I mean, without a player walking on those greens, they're about as perfect as you could ever get them. They're green, they're lush, they're full of grass, which is what we saw a bit of a problem with last year. They're quick; if you get on the wrong side of the cup, you're in trouble out there.
For me it's a very pretty golf course. You stand on tee boxes, and you just think, wow, bunkers are very striking, and it's definitely a very attractive golf course to the eye. It's very, very tough to play. There's no faking it out there. You've got to go out and play good golf. You can't really get away with too much on this golf course.

Q. Furyk said it wasn't like you were knocking down putts, but it wasn't like they were 30-footers. Was that basically your irons the strongest part of your game today?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I felt I just took my chances when I had them. Whenever I had a good number and I felt comfortable with the club, I hit a pretty good shot, hit it to 15 feet or less, and with the greens being pretty good, if you put a good stroke on it, you're going to make some putts out there. I didn't make a bomb out there at all, so felt like it was just a very, very solid round of golf.
Probably what I haven't been doing, though, is taking those 10-, 15-foot chances in other rounds. But today was kind of one of the rounds where you got the most out of how well you played.

Q. Several players this week have called this golf course long and hard, but you shot 63 and hit every fairway and all but two greens. Do you think it's long and hard?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, like I said, starting the day today, my mindset was to respect the golf course and to go out there and just fairways and greens it. I mean, that sounds simple. I didn't expect to do that and make nine birdies out there for sure. I felt like if you could keep it around par today, it would have been a pretty solid start to the golf tournament.
I think we're going to see the course firm up, especially if it stays cool and a little bit of breeze, it's going to firm up pretty quickly. I don't think it's going to get any easier as the week goes on.

Q. Along those lines, what would have been a target score for you coming in? Was it even par, a little bit under?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think if you would have gone out there and broken 70 you would have played really, really good golf today. That's the way I viewed it. My two playing partners played really nice golf, made a couple putts here and there, hung in well. They shot, I think, 68 and 69 respectively, and they're great players. I thought that that was a really good benchmark for the day.
Makes me ecstatic could have shot the round I did. For me round of the year, and certainly one of the -- it was on my short list of rounds ever, so it was one of those days.
JOHN BUSH: Let's go through the card starting with birdies on the first two holes, No. 10 and 11.
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I hit a good drive off 10, was left about 95 yards into the pin. The wind was gusting pretty good, but I hit a little half wedge in there, controlled the spin, hit it to a foot.
The 11th, hit driver, 3-wood into the left rough, hit a sand wedge out of the left rough to 10 feet, made a putt there.
Bogey on 13, good drive, sort of chunked a 9-iron that came up just short of the green, about a yard off the green, pitched it to about five feet and missed.
Then hit driver, 5-wood onto the 15th, two-putted from 35, 40 feet, hit driver, sand wedge to six feet at 17.
I hit driver, 5-iron to the 1st to about 12 feet.
I hit driver, 7-iron to about 12 feet at 3.
Driver, 8-iron to about 15 feet at 4.
I hit 3-iron, 8-iron to 12 feet at 7.
And driver, 3-wood and pitched it to about two feet at the last.
JOHN BUSH: Justin, we appreciate your time. Keep it going this week.

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