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June 25, 2013

Shane Lowry


STEVE TODD:  Thanks for joining us, thoughts on playing The Irish Open here at Carton House this week, your home course.
SHANE LOWRY:  Something I've been looking forward to ever since it was announced it was going to be here last year.  Yeah, as I live here, play this golf course every week when I'm home, and really looking forward to it and hopefully I can have a good weekend.
STEVE TODD:  65 in Munich at the weekend, obviously gives you a bit of confidence coming into this week, as well.  Just talk us through your form and your hopes for the week.
SHANE LOWRY:  Yeah, the golf was going good last week.  Opened up with two easy 69s, felt easy and then it was like my arms were chopped off Friday evening.  Played poorly on Saturday and all I wanted to do Sunday morning was go out and shoot a decent score and get some confidence for this week.
I managed to shoot a very easy, bogey‑free 65 which was nice, and a lot of confidence going into this week.
STEVE TODD:  And you obviously won this championship 2009, this is the first time you've been back as a multiple European Tour winner, so describe your different state of mind coming in with that.
SHANE LOWRY:  I've won as an amateur and a pro now, so hopefully I can give myself a chance to win this week.  I definitely know if I give myself a chance come the back nine on Sunday, I can pull it off and it's that extra bit of confidence I might need come the weekend.

Q.  Is there more pressure on you this week because of it being at Carton House, and how do you cope with the added attention and pressure that may well come on your shoulders this week?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† I think if you look at it, it would look like there should be more pressure on me but I'm looking at that as an advantage if anything.¬† I play this golf course week‑in, week‑out and I know the golf course like the back of my hand.
I've always said that that's the main reason I didn't won in Baltray is because I knew the golf course so well.  Definitely I'm looking forward to playing this week.  I'm excited about it and I can't wait and looking forward to having all my friends and family up to watch me, as well.
If you would have asked me, is there added pressure, I don't think so.¬† I think it's more of‑‑ that pressure is more of a privilege really.

Q.¬† How does this week here follow‑up from what we saw at Portrush last year?
SHANE LOWRY:  Portrush last year was brilliant.  The crowds were amazing.  The golf course was great, but I think we can have just as good a week this week.
I think the weather is going to be quite nice hopefully, so I think the crowds are going to come out and watch us and hopefully if we can get an Irish challenger on the weekend, we can get an extra couple of thousand people in the gates and it should be good.

Q.  And the competition within the competition, top Irishman?
SHANE LOWRY:  Yeah, top Irishman.  Top Irishman is tough these kind of weeks.  We have got some of the best players in the world.  Yeah, I think if you're top Irishman this week, you won't be too far off the top of the leaderboard.

Q.  How much room do you have in the house and do you accommodate everybody?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† Yeah, family are banned from the house this week.¬† We have got a couple of‑‑ Oliver Fisher and Graeme Storm are staying this week, so I'm trying to keep it as normal as possible and keep my normal routine that I do every week.¬† Yeah, they are banned from the house until Sunday afternoon.

Q.  And would you normally share with Oliver and Graham?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† No, we never share but we always hang out together week‑in, week‑out.¬† Yeah, I said to the two lads when the tournament was announced, and, yeah, should be good.

Q.  Going to try your hand at cooking and making breakfast?
SHANE LOWRY:  No.  I'd like to see the lads getting around four rounds.  I don't think my cooking will be great.  But I give them a bed and that will be about it.

Q.  Are you fond of Montgomerie as a designer, and what particular holes do you think is going to make or break coming down the stretch?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† This is actually the only course that I can remember‑‑ yeah, I think it's a great golf course.¬† The bunkers are a bit severe and they probably will get a bit of slack this week I think.¬† I actually played with Monty this week and he's almost quite happy he's not here because he'd have 150 critics.
Obviously 13 and 18 are going to be huge, especially Sunday afternoon, 13, drivable par 4, probably should be making birdie‑‑ 13, 15, 18, that par 4 and the two par 5s to finish.¬† You can easily go 3‑ or 4‑under for the last five or six holes but you can easily go the other way as well.¬† I think those holes are going to be key this week.
Also, there's maybe about a handful of very tough holes that if you can play those well this week, I think you're doing all right.

Q.  Which ones?
SHANE LOWRY:  Well, I mean, the tee is up on 1, so if you look at 5, 10, 11, 16, probably, something like that, they are the tough holes.  So if you can play those holes well this week, I think you'll be doing all right.

Q.  You talk about the pressure earlier, playing with the home crowd; is there a sense when you're out there in the middle of all this that you can actually divorce yourself of what's going on around you and say, this is a match I can play, a friendly match I can play during the week on the course normally and get more relaxed and think of it as a normal game on the course during the week and divorce all this madness going on around you; is there any sense you can get that relaxing feeling going?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† As a pro golfer, you're playing in front of big crowds quite a bit.¬† I played in front of huge crowds at The Open Championship and the U.S. Open and stuff like that, and you never really‑‑ you don't really see what's going on around you.
You're focused on what you're doing.¬† That's the way I'm going to be this week.¬† I'm going to be‑‑ obviously there's going to be a lot of people up from home; I'll acknowledge them but I won't get dragged into the hype that's going to be around.
You know, when I'm out there in between the ropes, that will be me and the golf course, and see what score I can shoot I suppose.

Q.¬† No high‑fives for the gallery?
SHANE LOWRY:  No, none of that, no.  There will be Sunday evening hopefully.

Q.  You look at how well the guys have done in major championships and everything like that and then you had a go at the U.S. Tour yourself this year.  How sharp, how keen are you to get over there and compete over there, and how has this year stood to you?  What happened and what worked for you in the USA?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† I'm happy that I gave it a go.¬† I'm happy that I played over there quite a bit but I'm not too keen to get over there to be honest.¬† I love playing in Europe.¬† I find there's not a lot of tournaments‑‑ the money's not as big in Europe and stuff like that.¬† I don't play for the money; I play to try to compete and win tournaments, and that's just a secondary thing that comes along with it.
You know, eventually I'd like to try my hand at being a global player and playing both tours, but you know, I'm happy that I gave it a go, and I'd do the same again.  But I'm happy to be back in Europe and I'm really looking forward to this year in Europe.

Q.  What did you learn about yourself over there, and what is it precisely about The European Tour that you like, if it's possible to put into words?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† I think it's just‑‑ I've got more friends in Europe.¬† I feel more comfortable.¬† I'm more at home.¬† When I went over to America, I was sort of going week on, week off and flying over and back and it just wasn't really‑‑ it wasn't really suiting me.
Yeah, as I said, probably just a comfort, the whole comfort of being on The European Tour is a lot better than being over there.  But I'm sure I'll give it a go again in the near future.
And what have I learned from it?  I don't really know.  It's hard to put your finger on what you've learned from experiences like that, but I know I've learned a lot about myself and my game as well.

Q.  But it really did seem to take your fancy at the same time when you're actually going through that period?
SHANE LOWRY:  Yeah, I was looking forward to it, some of the biggest golf tournaments in the world.  Only a few weeks ago I was playing in the Memorial, which is one of the greatest tournaments in the world and what's not to fancy about that.
It's exciting times and it's a pleasure to be able to go and play in those tournament, and I'm grateful to have got those invites, and hopefully down the line I won't need the invites and I'll just be playing there anyway.

Q.  There's so much travel to be done in Europe that people say the opposite; that it's easier to play in the United States.  Do you like the idea of going to Korea and going to China and everything like that, and is it because of the craic with the lads, is that what makes it appealing?
SHANE LOWRY:  I don't think too many people like the idea of going to Korea (laughter).  I've been to Korea.  I've been to China.  I enjoy going to different places and hanging out with the lads I'm hanging around with, the likes of the two lads that are staying with me this week and Damien and Peter and people like that.
I love the whole craic of us traveling together and being together all the time, going out for dinner together and stuff like that and hanging around together.  That just wasn't happening in America.  That's the one thing I think I really missed about The European Tour.

Q.  If you had to sort of identify the type of player that would win around here, what kind of player were you looking at?
SHANE LOWRY:  I think the forecast is quite good, so the course is quite firm.  So I think it's sort of any player can win around here.  I think if the course had of been playing soft, it's a bomber areas paradise and will definitely favor the long hitters anyway.  Every golf course in the world favours long hitters.
Yeah, I think you just need to dodge the bunkers.  I think straight drivers of the ball this week will do well.  I think if you just miss the bunkers off the tee, you should do well from there, so I think that's the key this week.

Q.  Just wondering how much in demand are you for practise rounds partners this week and did you have to turn down any?
SHANE LOWRY:¬† No, I actually Neal was with me last week in Munich and I asked him to arrange a game with the amateurs, so playing with Gavin and Reeve and Seamus Power who I played international golf with back in the day, so I'm playing at 12 o'clock with those lads, so should be good.¬† Bit of a four‑ball, bit of a laugh, so nice.

Q.  Just on the amateur scene, seems to be a lot of strength and depth there; do you see that's a result of what you did and Pádraig and Rory?
SHANE LOWRY:  Yeah, I said that to Neal last week.  I think Irish Close Champion and the Irish Amateur Champion didn't make The European Team, which is probably a first.  I think the strength and depth in the amateur game in the country at the minute is quite good.
You know, when you see the players that we have; is it because of what we've done?  Yeah, I think they look at players like myself and Rory and Pádraig and all the lads, and just they want a bit of that, they want a bit of professional golf.
So yes, it's quite good at the minute and I do keep up‑to‑date with it and it's good to see the lads doing well.

Q.  Not to put any pressure on the amateur lads, but is it possible for somebody to do what you did and contend and do very well?  Made the cut in the U.S. Open and played very well.
SHANE LOWRY:  Over 72 holes of golf, anything can happen.  I would be very surprised if any of the amateurs won on Sunday.
You know, obviously I did it but yeah, I mean, it's just hard.¬† You can't‑‑ I'm not going to put any pressure on any of them and say that any of them can win it, but I think that they need to come here this week and enjoy themselves and take everything in, and you know, hopefully they get four rounds, I think should be their goal this week.

Q.  It does beg the question:  How did you win?
SHANE LOWRY:  I shot the lowest score and won the playoff (laughter).
Yeah, I don't know.  I just done exactly what I said.  I arrived up to Baltray and took everything in and I enjoyed myself for the week, and all of a sudden I was going out on the final round with a chance to win and I just went from there, really.  I don't know how I done it; it was a bit mad to be honest, but yeah.
STEVE TODD:  Enjoy the week, Shane, thanks for joining us.

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