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THE PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP


May 8, 2014


Russell Henley


PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FLORIDA

DOUG MILNE:テつ Russell Henley, congratulations, 7‑under 65, 30 on the back nine ties the course record, birdied half your holes today.テつ That being said, just a few comments on the round.
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Yeah, I putted great today.テつ I made some good par putts that kept my round going, and felt like when I got my driver in the fairway, I felt like I usually was pretty successful on the hole.テつ So when I'm driving the ball well, I feel pretty confident about my game, and I feel like I did that pretty good today except one or two holes.

Q.テつ Can you talk about making the double and then shooting 30?テつ Any bounce‑back or kick in the butt or‑‑
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Yeah, you know, that was a shot that I hate to hit.テつ I don't like hooking the ball, and I feel like I've done it so many times now that I think I've learned to deal with it maybe (laughing), but you've just got to stay tough out here, and if you don't, somebody is going to stay tough and beat you.テつ I've learned that the hard way, and I feel like I just use it as motivation to stay tough and know that I need to stay sharp the rest of the day.テつ I felt like the rest of the way I hit my driver really well, and from the fairway I feel pretty confident.
It was a nice rest of the round after No.7, but hopefully I can get that hole back tomorrow.

Q.テつ Traditionally this has been a hard golf course to get on a roll like you got on today.テつ Is it just playing easier for some reason?テつ Are the conditions such that that kind of number is out there for a lot of guys?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Probably.テつ I think if I can do it, I think a lot of these guys can do it.テつ I think the greens are rolling very true, and I think today it's really warm with a light breeze that didn't change too much, so I think the ball is going a pretty long way, and that being said, you can hit more wedges into greens, and when you hit wedges into these greens you can be pretty aggressive on this course, and I think that's what happened.テつ I think if the greens firm up a little bit over the weekend, like they normally do, I think, from watching on TV, it'll probably change a little bit, but today hitting wedges into some of the holes, it helped a lot.

Q.テつ The best part of having a first‑round lead is obvious, but what is the hardest part?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ I don't know that I'm going to be the leader yet.

Q.テつ Let's assume.
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Well, I was almost leading at the Sony and played well there.テつ I was almost leading at the Honda and played well there, so hopefully I'm almost leading this time (laughing).
But we've got three more days, and I feel like I've already been talking about this round for 30 or 40 minutes now, and everybody texting me and stuff and trying to tell me good job, which is great.テつ I wouldn't have it any other way.テつ But there's three more days, and so much can happen on a course like this.テつ For me, I'm going to try to stay in my routine, go practice a little bit, work out, get some rest, sleep in tomorrow and just keep enjoying the game.テつ We've got a couple good days of weather, so I really have nothing to lose this week.

Q.テつ You missed the cut last year, I think.テつ Is there anything you picked up about the golf course this time around?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Absolutely.テつ Today Adam Hayes, my caddie, for the last two days has kind of gone over what we need to hit off of some of these tees.テつ I think I was a little bit too aggressive last year on a couple of the holes.テつ He's got me hitting 3‑wood on 2, unless obviously it's a gale force wind into your face, but I'm hitting 3‑wood on 2; I'm hitting 3‑wood on 9.テつ So last year I hit it in the water on Friday on 9 with a driver and hit it down the right side, and I just‑‑ little stuff like that, getting the ball in the fairway, getting a wedge in my hand an those holes instead of trying to bang it up there and being too aggressive leads to hopefully a lot less big numbers than last year.テつ So maybe playing some of the holes a little less aggressive has helped me to stay in there and make some pars.

Q.テつ Is 2 reachable with 3‑wood for you?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ If I hit a really good 3‑wood and another pretty good 3‑wood or 5‑wood, I can probably get there.テつ But I don't have a problem hitting a little wedge into that green every day.

Q.テつ What do you think is the hardest driving hole out here?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Hardest driving hole, I think 18 is pretty tough.テつ I mean, that one is pretty obvious.テつ But I think‑‑ let's see here.テつ I think 10 is pretty hard, too.テつ It's kind of a tight chute and doesn't look like there's that much room out there, that much room to bail out either way.テつ I would say 18 is definitely the hardest.

Q.テつ You won the Web.com Tour Championship.テつ Anything about Dye's bulkheady kind of look?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Yeah, I won just the regular event out here two years ago.テつ Yeah, that's the thing, I think, about his courses.テつ They look‑‑ they are tough, and they make you think there's a lot more out there than sometimes there really is, and vice versa.テつ You just have to know the course.テつ Adam Hayes, my caddie, this is his ninth or tenth time caddying around here, and he helps me so much.テつ There's a lot of times he changes what I'm thinking, and it turns out to be exactly right, so I have to give a lot to credit to him.

Q.テつ How long have you guys been together?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Last year in the summer.

Q.テつ First two wins on Bermuda, right?
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Yes.

Q.テつ Is that a coincidence or you're from the Southeast‑‑
RUSSELL HENLEY:テつ Probably.テつ I haven't played that much golf on poa annua greens and haven't putted well on those yet.テつ Hopefully I can figure out in the future a way that works for me.テつ I just feel comfortable on them.テつ It's about as simple as that.
DOUG MILNE:テつ Russell, thanks for your time.テつ Great start.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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