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November 5, 2009

Paul Casey


Q. Looking at the numbers, which I must confess is basically all I've seen of your golf today, but looking at the numbers -- I'm sorry -- you must be a very happy man, aren't you?
PAUL CASEY: Yeah. First round with the cards in my hand since Akron, and first round I've completed since The Open. I'm very, very happy with that, and also slightly annoyed that I let a couple of shots go. You know, it was a very good round of golf. I did a lot of things brilliantly. And yet I managed to find the water on 18 with a tee shot and had to re-load from the tee and made a couple of other mistakes. So all in all very, very happy with that.

Q. And what about the injury? Do you feel anything from that at all?
PAUL CASEY: Still feeling it. I came out -- the mistakes I made, you know, I just sort of come out of it. I don't stay in the shot and I don't keep the spine angle and straighten up the body to take the pressure off the ribs that hurt and the ball goes right. Or if I flick it with the hands, it will go left.
So those were the areas. And a couple of times today, the shots on 9, my final hole, out of the rough, it was a good line in the first cut of rough. It's a pretty strayed for the 6-iron, centre of the green, and I just for whatever reason didn't commit to it. I'm having commitment issues (laughing) because I left it short of the green. I don't quite have the power there just yet. But there is a way to get around the golf course without having that power and I'm doing it quite well right now.

Q. Walking around the course yesterday, you popped into my head, because there's some serious rough here, unlike last week, so that must give you a degree of trepidation, I would have thought?
PAUL CASEY: I hit one or two shots out of the rough in the Pro-Am, and yeah, it wasn't very nice. It's a little bit concerning but you know, if I strike the golf ball like I did today, I even had a new driver in the bag today, which was I thought, well, why not, we'll just pop it in there. Been working with it for a while, and I thought I got nothing to lose. That was sort of the attitude I had. You know, it's not 100 per cent. I thought I would just go out there with, you know, a sort of fairly care-free attitude and I did very well.

Q. All in all, must be, I don't know, a mixture of relief, and a huge round to get under your belt?
PAUL CASEY: Yeah, I would admit I was actually slightly nervous on the first, not because the 10.50 tee time, last group out made me nervous. But it was the fact that the first time on the golf course with a card in my hand for quite a long time and I just didn't know what to expect.
You know, starting on 10, I may actually miss that fairway right yesterday, stuck it behind a tree, and not sure; was it going to go well, was it going to go poorly. You know, and I logged on this morning, and bless him, I saw that Goose doubled the 10th hole to start his round, and for some reason, I was thinking, don't do that. It looked like it hit the flag on the 10th, birdied so and birdied 11 and so I was off to a flyer and very happy with that.

Q. Have you ever felt like that as a pro before at the start of a tournament?
PAUL CASEY: Not really, no. Maybe in my first event as a pro. A little bit strange really. The season stretches throughout the year, so you never really have that much of a break. You know, I've had to -- in some respects, relearn a little bit of the sort of golf. I forgot how to do certain things.
It comes back very, very quickly, because I haven't put years and years of work into it for it to disappear overnight. But it's just a strange feeling. I'm very, very relieved I haven't forgotten everything.

Q. You were saying in Spain that you were a little rusty, and obviously you would be; but today it looked fabulous. Back nine in particular you scrambled really well?
PAUL CASEY: You were there for that shot on 5 I think it was, and 6 was much better, because with the water behind, that was not a very nice shot.
I've done a lot -- it was strange, because I did a lot of work on the short game when I couldn't hit full shots. And then as soon as I could hit full shots, that sort of went out the window because I was so excited to be able to actually swing the golf club and for that week before the Match Play, I have to admit, I neglected the chipping green slightly.
That's always the first -- it's always the first thing to go, and it's the last thing to sort of come back is the short game sometimes. So today was encouraging, because those were two very difficult chips and played them nicely.

Q. What happened to the putt on the 8th?
PAUL CASEY: 7. What was frustrating was always trust your first read. Always trust your instincts. I saw something unusual, thought it might break right-to-left, asked Craig to come over, take another look at it, and then we convinced ourselves it was a left-edge putt and I sent it left-edge and it bloke slightly left and with he missed it. I say "we"; clearly his fault (laughter) if I made it, it was all me.

Q. How much pressure are you putting on yourself? Is that because now you think, right, you're ready to kick on?
PAUL CASEY: I was quite enjoying sort of being -- yeah, I did get irritated a couple of times, but it was from trying to stop myself from making some of the mental errors that I made last week.
Yeah, I was just -- I knew I had a good round going, and I looked at the scores and I thought, come on, let's just sort of don't back off this. Let's try and get up there on the leaderboard. Haven't been on the leaderboard since about May. Still not on it yet but getting close.

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