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April 11, 2013

Graeme McDowell


Q.テつ Tell us about your day.
GRAEME McDOWELL:テつ You know, I played some solid golf to be honest, apart from taking four to get down from over the back of 12, which is just sloppy.
Rallied nicely, birdied 13, birdied 15, chances coming in.
17 was playing difficult.テつ Tried to force a 5‑iron in there and missed it exactly where you're not supposed to along there, tough up‑and‑down.
18 was disappointing.テつ It was an easy enough trap shot there and I just came out of it a little bit.テつ All in all, some good ball‑striking today.テつ Iron play was solid.テつ A couple nice scrambles here and there.
Yeah, disappointed to finish 1‑over par, but we can get back out there tomorrow and get ourselves in the red and try and stay in touch going into the weekend.

Q.テつ You were ticking along very nicely up until 11 and the putter used four times at 12; is that just the perils that lie around every corner at Augusta?
GRAEME MCDOWELL:テつ For sure, what they have done here at Augusta, they have given you a little bit of grass to play with around the greens.テつ Seventy percent of the time, it makes it quite easy.
But on 12, I didn't have a lot of green to work with, quite a fast pitch shot.テつ You know, I've been practicing hitting the putter, trying to nudge it through the fringe and get it up on the green.テつ And the fringes are very slow to putt through, and it makes it difficult.テつ It forces your hands a little bit around the greens and makes you play the shots.テつ It's very generous and they have given us a chance.テつ I just made a bit of a mess on 12, took the percentage shot, the first putt just came up short and I had a woeful second putt.
But such is life.テつ Like I say, rallied well, couple birdies after that, and we'll be ready for tomorrow.

Q.テつ Still well there, no real damage done and another good round tomorrow and plenty to work with hopefully.
GRAEME MCDOWELL:テつ Yeah, no panic button.テつ I didn't play terribly at all today.テつ Hit a lot of nice shots.テつ A couple putts that could have went in here and there.
6 was my only mistake on the front nine, and 12 was disappointing and the last two, but there was plenty of good there.テつ Some nice birdies, nice swings.
Just have to go out and shoot 3‑ or 4‑under tomorrow and get myself there for the weekend.テつ You never know with this golf course, it's going to get tougher and tougher, and you've just got to try and stay in it.テつ I thought anything under par‑‑ when I looked at the set of pins today, I thought anything 1‑, 2‑under par would be a good score today, so I'm not going to be horribly disappointed with 1‑over.

Q.テつ Two shots better than last year, one way of looking at it.テつ What are your feelings on your first round?
GRAEME MCDOWELL:テつ Generally a little bit disappointed of course.テつ 1‑under par with two to go and shoot 1‑over, never nice to bogey the last two holes.
17 is probably one of the toughest par 4s on the course today, very, very difficult pin position.テつ Playing long, tough tee shot.
I guess, you know, 18 was a bit of a mistake.テつ I had an easy second shot there.テつ I hit it in the right trap and didn't hit a very good trap shot.テつ Apart from that, I look at 18, I look at 12, having four putts from over the back of that green is just kind of‑‑ it's just sloppy, really.
All in all, some good driving of the ball, some good iron play, some good stuff in general, and you know, I'll build and rest and get ready for tomorrow.

Q.テつ You have a very measured approach considering you did bogey the last two holes, but is that part of what you learn over the years in Augusta; that it's going to give you some chances, but it's also going to do that to you, and you have to take a long view?
GRAEME MCDOWELL:テつ Yeah, you've got to take the rough with the smooth on this golf course.テつ I walked off the 12th green about to kind of throw the toys out of the pram, and I just have to kind of remind myself that I got it up‑and‑down out of the trap on 10, exactly where I shouldn't be.テつ And you know, if I would have made 5, 4, 4, I'm walking off with a slightly different attitude; instead I made 4, 4, 5, making a double at a short par 3.
You've just got to, like you say, look at the long‑term view on this golf course.テつ It gives, it takes and you've just got to hope that it gives you more than it takes away and you're the last man standing come Sunday afternoon.テつ Yeah, some good stuff to build on and yeah I'm looking forward to tomorrow.

Q.テつ Playing as well as you did last year here, did it give you the feeling that if you go out with a plan, looked like you were so steady for the first 11 holes and you had a plan and you were adhering to it?
GRAEME MCDOWELL:テつ I stuck to my plan pretty much the whole day long.テつ A couple of loose iron shots coming in, 195 up the hill to 17, back right pin there, just came over the top of it a little bit and hit it long left, dead.
18 was a straightforward 6‑iron into the green and I just came up out of it.テつ Yeah, I stuck to my game plan very well today, I really did.テつ I mostly positioned the ball where I should and putted decently at times, and just kind of didn't add up to the score I was hoping for.テつ Like I say, a couple of bad errors in there, 12 and 18.

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