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THE OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP


July 20, 2012


Luke Donald


LYTHAM ST. ANNES, ENGLAND

Q.  Talk about your round again, please.
LUKE DONALD:¬† Again, it was a pretty solid round, tee‑to‑green.¬† The difference between yesterday's and today's round was I holed a few more putts.¬† Still the only disappointing thing probably was I gave myself a lot of opportunities from 100 to 150 yards with the greens being pretty soft, not much wind.¬† I wasn't quite sharp enough, hitting a lot of shots from that distance of 25 feet, and I felt like I could have created some more opportunities that way.
But still, again, I hit the ball in play on a lot of fairways.  A lot of solid shots today.  It was nice to see a few more putts go in.  And all in all a pretty solid round.

Q.  You feel like you're just sort of rounding into form as the days go on, top form?
LUKE DONALD:¬† I'm certainly feeling more and more comfortable.¬† It's nice to put‑‑ string a couple of solid rounds together in a major.¬† Obviously where I am in my career I need to be contending.¬† And obviously this was a good solid two rounds, and looking forward to the weekend.

Q.  (Inaudible.)
LUKE DONALD:  You know, if you hit the shots it is possible.  There wasn't too much wind there and the greens are soft.  And I've played with Brandt a number of times, I don't know if he's just making bombs from everywhere or he's hitting it close.  But if you are on, you can make some birdies around here.  Again, the conditions with the wind not really pumping too much and soft greens, if you're feeling good about your game you can make some birdies.  Obviously he's doing something that not a lot of people are doing, and hats off to him.  But he's that kind of streaky player.  He gets on a roll, he gets in a groove and he's hard to stop.

Q.  The course conditions, itself, considering the rain?
LUKE DONALD:  They're a little bit damp, obviously the bunkers have some standing water.  Fortunately I didn't go in any today.  But, yeah, that's the only problem.  The fairways are fine.  I had to take one drop from casual water on the 4th hole.  As long as we don't get too much more rain, these courses drain very well.

Q.  (Inaudible.)
LUKE DONALD:¬† I hit a drive and 4‑iron to about 15 feet and holed the putt.¬† And I played the hard holes really well; birdied 6, birdied 15.¬† It was the easy ones I kind of struggled with.¬† 10 and 13 I kind of caught an odd divot on that shot and tried to cut in a little sand iron and bladed it over the back of the green.¬† It was a poor shot.
But again, those are the kind of opportunities I'm letting go.  I feel if I can be a little bit sharper on the weekend with those ones, I can make a couple more birdies.

Q.  You said that the wind was not up as high but it was a crosswind?
LUKE DONALD:  It was changeable.  It sort of switched around a little bit, which it has done the last couple of days.  It wasn't a strong wind but it was a different direction than we played in the practice rounds.  So there was a little bit of adjusting.  But again, it was no more than a club wind.

Q.  Any word from your caddie?
LUKE DONALD:  I've not heard.  Yeah, I'm putting the phone on but hopefully all is going well.  John got the call this morning early in the morning, and he headed off down.

Q.  (Inaudible.)
LUKE DONALD:  Yeah, I've actually been sharing a house with John and Gareth, and when Robert pulled out he was available.  So it worked out well, and obviously I've got some history with Lordy, having caddied for me at Disney.

Q.  Do you know how long he'll be on the bag?
LUKE DONALD:  We'll see how long.  We don't know how long these babies take.  But I told John to not rush.  For me that was an important thing in my life, to be around for that, especially your first one, and enjoy that experience.  But I know what he's like.  He's very passionate about his job, as well, and he'll get back here when he's ready.

Q.  With the course the way it is, how big is Snedeker's lead this week?
LUKE DONALD:  It depends on the conditions.  From what I hear, tomorrow is going to be a similar day to today, and Sunday is going to be a bit more breezy.  But it's never easy playing with a lead.  It's one of those courses you can be a little bit off and struggle, just like Phil did today.  He didn't hit too many poor shots but found a lot of bunkers, just being slightly off.  Again, I'll concentrate mostly on my game, just chipping away at trying to give myself opportunities and make some birdies.

Q.  Did you hear some cheers today?
LUKE DONALD:¬† Yeah, lots of them.¬† The crowd's been great, really vocal.¬† Just loving it when I made that little bit of run on‑‑ where was it, 4, 5 and 6 and 8 I made some good putts there and the crowd were great.¬† They're really getting behind me.

Q.  (Inaudible.)
LUKE DONALD:¬† Yeah, I think‑‑ well, more so here, I think.¬† Having a home crowd, you know, that are really supporting the local guys.

Q.  Is your caddie nearby?
LUKE DONALD:  Down in London.  Better than being in the U.S., at least.

Q.  (Inaudible.)
LUKE DONALD:  About 6:30 in the morning he came in and I saw he was up a little early so thought it might be time.  She was due on Wednesday, so she was trying to hold on as long as possible.
But you can't forgive him.  I won't pay him for today, obviously, but, you know, he should be around for the birth.

Q.  (Inaudible.)
LUKE DONALD:  I know Gareth pretty well.  We have some history, good history from Disney.  So it wasn't too bad.  He knows my game, and it was an easy transition.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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