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May 12, 2013

Henrik Stenson


Q.  Tell me about your round a little bit.  You were right there.
HENRIK STENSON:  Well, I mean, I'm happy overall.  I didn't play my best this afternoon, I have to say that.  I was struggling a bit with the ball striking more than anything.  But I'm very proud with the way I was hanging in there.  I made a double on 4, and then I made a 20‑footer downhill for par on 6.  So it could have gone south in a heartbeat there.  I was hanging in there and birdied 9, 10, 11, and just I went for the pin on 14.  Hit a good shot.  But we weren't sure 8, 9, wind, this and that, we decided on a late call, hit it, and it comes up 10 yards short and ended up making bogey on that one, par 15.
Two good shots on 16.  Long chance for eagle, two‑putted out for birdie.  Good two putt on 17, and then on the last flared it way right into the trees.  Lucky I have a gap, and played a flier 9‑iron just short of the green.  I had a chip from like 10, 15 yards.  I knew if I chipped it in, there might be an outside chance depending on what happens afterwards.  I got a little bit too aggressive with it, and that kind of cost me the up‑and‑down.  It's one of them thin lines.  You're going to go for a pitch to try to maybe have an outside chance for a playoff to chip in or go for the safer option and try an up‑and‑down.

Q.  When you've got a guy like Tiger above you, was there a number in mind you felt like you needed to have today?
HENRIK STENSON:  I saw that he had dropped back a little bit.  Then I saw Jeff Maggert in front of me hit it in the water on 17 by the sounds of it.  So with a birdie there I knew I was up and about, and trying to get up‑and‑down on 16 for birdie.  Then I needed to either start taking silly chances or something great for me to happen.
My ball striking just wasn't there today, so I'm happy with the way I scrambled and kept the round together, and it's a good finish.

Q.  We saw a lot of guys have trouble with 17.  Obviously, you talked about Jeff, Sergio did it twice.  What is it about that hole?
HENRIK STENSON:  It's with the wind more than anything.  If you've got a good yardage, I was between 9‑iron and pitching wedge, if the wind is hurting in off the left‑‑ I decided to go for a firm pitching wedge, but then I can't take the pin on the right‑hand side.  Then that leaves a tricky two‑putt.  But it's all, if you want to go for it and hit a great shot there, you're going to have a short putt for birdie.  Obviously, if you don't quite get it, then trouble starts and it can go south rapidly.
I think it's just a great example that these 240‑yard par‑3s are definitely not necessary in today's golf either, and I don't like them standing there hitting 3‑irons and so on.  So more short holes with a lot of risk and reward, that is the way forward, I think, in course design.

Q.  So you're okay with that?
HENRIK STENSON:  Yeah, I like it.  You hit a good shot and you get the reward otherwise you're going to struggle.  I think there are some great holes out there, 16.  You can be left with a 5‑iron and you don't know what to do with it.  It plays with your mind and you've got to hit good shots.  I think the 8th hole here is probably the worst one on the course for me.  It's such a long hole it's like a bash, more or less, there every day on 17, but on 13, you've got to be on top of things.

Q.  (Indiscernible)?
HENRIK STENSON:  Well, both yes and no.  I hit a very poor tee shot.  I had to chip sideways and then I chipped it back into play, I felt, but it came out a little bit too fast and then ended up going on the cart path and went down and stop on the bridge.  So it could have gone in the water there as well.  I'm not a big fan of cart paths on any golf course.  I think it destroys more than it helps, for sure, and every week someone's ending up in trouble due to them.  But that's the nature of the game, I guess.
I just did a clumsy three‑putt.  I got it beautifully back into play after all that trouble.  I had a ten‑footer for par, hit that three, four feet by, and I had a 360‑horseshoe coming back.  So it was a clumsy three‑putt at that stage and didn't really need it, but I was hanging in there and happy with the way I wrapped up the day anyway.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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