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August 22, 2013

Paul McGinley


Q.  Does this kill off the notion that being Ryder Cup Captain can have a detrimental effect to your game?
PAUL McGINLEY:  To be honest, look, it's one round.  I've had a good round today.  Let's put it in perspective.  It's been one round, I've had a mediocre season, probably a poor season, to be honest so far.
But as I say, I don't want to use the captaincy as an excuse.¬† The captaincy is an exciting time in my life, and I'm really enjoying it.¬† And of course, I don't have as much time to focus on my golf as I have done in the past, but having said that, you know, I'm experienced enough and I still play and practice still, so there's no excuse‑‑ I don't want to use an excuse and say, look, two years‑‑ it's important when I'm out there playing, I played with two young kids today who could quite possibly be on the team.
I've learned a lot from playing with those two players, and I've learned a huge amount from playing the golf course.¬† It's a different setup than what we have experienced in the past.¬† Certainly from my point of view, it suited me and suited my eye, the run‑off areas and the rough being not as severe.¬† Whether it suits the players next year in The Ryder Cup is another story.¬† I'm going to get some feedback from the players after this week about what they think of the golf course, and gelling that with the experience of previous years when it's been soft and heavy rough, which kind of setup will we aim for, because that is my prerogative as the home team captain to choose how to set up the golf course in terms of rough and greens and stuff like that.

Q.¬† Is it about what suits the European players or the Americans‑‑
PAUL McGINLEY:¬† It's about what suits us.¬† I'm not too concerned about the American side.¬† I'm more concerned about our players.¬† It was hard for me to make decisions at the moment until‑‑ to be quite honest, I don't even make them until probably next April anyway, because there's going to be no growth over the winter.
By April, a lot of the team will be in place and I will be able to ask those players that look like making the team as to what they think, what kind of setup they would like.  The jury is still out at the moment, but I tell you what, it's been a huge learning curve to go the oath end of the scale in terms of the setup of the golf course this week.  It's firm, it's fast.
The greens are firm with the SubAir system.¬† The drainage in the fairways is making the ball run down the fairways and loads of an amount of run‑offs around the greens.¬†¬† It's a different golf course than we have played in the past and I'm delighted that David Williams and the Tour have set it up that way, and Mother Nature has taken its part with the warm summer we've had, too.

Q.¬† Those guys you're going to be speaking to, are they players who might be on the team‑‑
PAUL McGINLEY:¬† A bit of both, guys like Jos√© Maria, he's obviously here this week, he's going to be a Seve Trophy captain, of course I want to get his views on the golf course and what he thinks.¬† He's got a mind full of information, and of course guys like him‑‑ even the young kids today, I was asking them what they thought, guys like Shane and Danny, not saying they will be on the team but the younger guys, as well, asking them, do you prefer this kind of setup or do you want heavy rough.
So we'll have to wait and see.  A lot of information gathering going on, and I've taken a whole lot of notes on the way around on the back of my yardage book about course setup.  I've just passed them on to David Williams, as well, too.  This is why it's important for me to remain playing and this is why we in Europe have always had the view that the Ryder Cup Captain should be, like me, in the twilight of their career.

Q.  One or two captains have threatened to get to the qualifying Mark in the past; have you allowed yourself to think what you would do in that scenario?
PAUL McGINLEY:¬† No, to be honest I think I'll do what Monty did and take myself out of the points and not even go down that road.¬† I want to focus‑‑ there's enough things to go on, if I start playing well, it's a big bonus, but I certainly don't‑‑ certainly one thing is for sure, there's no way I can be a playing captain.¬† No, I will probably go along the lines of Monty and not even have myself on the points list.
But having said that, I will certainly very much be in The Race to Dubai.  I want to play well next year.

Q.  The rough, was that the biggest thing you noticed?
PAUL McGINLEY:  I think the biggest thing was the firmness much the fairways.  The drainage has really worked well, and also, the SubAir system has really worked well on the greens.  The greens are running smoother and they are a lot firmer, as well, too, than they have been in the past, considering we've had a bit of rain this week.
So that is‑‑ but the rough has been the big thing.¬† The rough is the big thing, left of 15, you lose your ball down there in the past.¬† In fact, I lost my ball with a second shot into 15 last year just left of the green.¬† I was probably three yards left of the green, lost my ball.¬† This year, it's straightforward.¬† You chip out of, good rough, still, but it's not unplayable.
So things like that have changed and it's good to get both perspectives.  I don't know which way we'll go yet, but it's good to get both perspectives.

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