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ZURICH CLASSIC OF NEW ORLEANS


April 28, 2012


Ernie Els


AVONDALE, LOUISIANA

Q.テつ Ernie, a very warm Saturday afternoon but you handled it really well.テつ Front side, made birdies on the par-5s like you're supposed to and you had some fun at 13.テつ Take me through that 13th hole, a short dogleg.
ERNIE ELS:テつ 13 was teed up about 30 yards and it was a bit of breeze behind me and have a go at the green.テつ Hit a really good shot.テつ I couldn't quite see where it finished.テつ I got there and went into one of Pete Dye's little pot bunkers.テつ Then I really had a shot because the pin was cut tight.テつ I hit a shot 30, 34 feet pass the hole and nice putt.

Q.テつ Just another 3.
ERNIE ELS:テつ Another 3.

Q.テつ You played really well again today.
ERNIE ELS:テつ I played nicely.テつ Scoring is becoming a little bit more difficult.テつ The back-9 I saw guys come out of the greens.テつ It's getting firmer and faster.テつ Tomorrow could be interesting.
The guys have been scoring well and I think tomorrow you're going to have to play really well to have the scores we've been playing.

Q.テつ There wasn't much hop on the green on the front sides.
ERNIE ELS:テつ This heat, you know, 85 degrees and breeze.テつ Eventually now they're getting a little firmer and faster.テつ I played really nicely the back-9, shoot 2-under and I feel I'll have to try and do that tomorrow.テつ I think scoring is going to get a little bit tougher.

Q.テつ You're surrounded by a bunch of guys who haven't won or haven't won in a long time on Tour.
You and Steve kind of the old veterans fooling them so far.テつ Do you like where you stand?
ERNIE ELS:テつ Yeah, I do.テつ I feel I'm not too far back.テつ I'm not sure what Jason is doing on 18 now.テつ If I'm two behind, I think I'm really in for -- maybe even three behind.テつ Yeah, going to take good golf tomorrow.テつ I'm up for it.

Q.テつ You putted well today and played well congratulations.
ERNIE ELS:テつ Thank you.

Q.テつ Ernie, you played the back-9 completely caught fire.テつ You hit it great on 17.テつ Tell me about the highlights on the back-9.
ERNIE ELS:テつ Yeah.テつ The tee up on 13 and went for the green.テつ Hit it into one of Pete Dye's pot bunkers.テつ Short-sided myself a little bit.テつ Hit a safe shot and made a long putt for birdie there.テつ Kind of got me going a bit.
Birdied 15, hitting a nice second shot into the front flag, and then 17 was a bonus, you know.テつ 160 yards, little 8-iron.テつ Got it nice and stiff there.テつ Really nice.テつ Didn't birdie 18 but at least got a chance for tomorrow.

Q.テつ Overall you played so well in the run up to the Masters.テつ You didn't qualify.テつ You played well.テつ Hiccup in Harbor Town.
Do you feel the way you're playing, you're playing that way again, it's only a matter of time left before you get back in the winner's circle?
ERNIE ELS:テつ You can never say that.テつ I don't want to be that cocky.テつ I feel like it's coming around.テつ I've been saying it now for a couple of months but I really do believe that it's coming around and I think when -- everything falls in place, we'll have a really great year.テつ I'm looking forward to it.
Tomorrow is another 18 holes of golf and give it my best shot, you know.テつ Whatever happens, you know, I'll keep working.

Q.テつ Have you been able to enjoy the city?
ERNIE ELS:テつ I've been down there.テつ I've been downtown and eating down there in the French Quarter and, you know, great stuff, you know.テつ Good people.テつ My kind of town.

Q.テつ Your kind of town?
ERNIE ELS:テつ People like to have a good time.テつ I don't mind that.

Q.テつ Kind of Quail Hollow and The Players.テつ Talk about the decision to play these next three weeks as you have two out of three?
ERNIE ELS:テつ Well, I like the time of the year, it starts getting a little warmer.テつ Golf courses -- get a couple of really good golf courses.テつ I've not played Byron Nelson in many years.テつ That's another favorite of mine.テつ Finally got back there.テつ I'll come back for the Memorial which is another favorite tournament of mine.テつ There's a lot of nice tournaments coming up.

Q.テつ Make it a little bit more difficult to pick and choose because we have these three big events?
ERNIE ELS:テつ I love Quail Hollow.テつ I've never had good results there.テつ Sometimes your eye doesn't set-up for you and you like to play there and play good golf there.テつ That's my case there.
That's why I wanted -- when I missed the cut at Hilton Head I actually wanted to play last week at Texas.テつ It was too late to enter.テつ I like playing around here.テつ Good tournaments coming up.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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