CME Group Tour Championship

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Naples, Florida, USA

Tiburon Golf Club

Minjee Lee

Quick Quotes

Q. 6-under 66, eight birdies on the card, really solid round for you today. What was working so well for you? You hit 13 of 14 fairways, 16 of 18 greens. Was it your ball-striking that was clutch or were you making the putts?

MINJEE LEE: Yeah, I think my putter was the one today, but I hit a lot of fairways and I hit a lot of greens today, so obviously I could give myself a lot of opportunities to make the putt, as well. I think overall I was pretty solid through the whole board.

Q. What were some of your personal highlights out there today?

MINJEE LEE: I hit it really close on the one before the par-5. It was like 7 or something -- no, 6. I hit it really close. That was my highlight, I think. Just a tap-in.

Q. What have you found in your game recently? Obviously you've had a really solid season, but kind of tapered off a little bit at the end of the season. What have you found the last few weeks that was working for you?

MINJEE LEE: It was probably the opposite. The start of the season was a little slow for me, and then Dow and Evian I had a really great stretch, and like British and all that, and just coming into this week I was feeling a little run-down. Last week I got a little bit sick.

I just want to get this week done and have a great off-season.

Q. It's been a big year for you, a major winner. How would you assess 2021?

MINJEE LEE: It just feels like it was 2020 and then 2021 was -- like went on to 2021, like 2020. It was like essentially one year in two years. It just feels like it's been going on for a long time. Obviously I won a major this year, and it's been a highlight of my life, or my career.

No, overall it's been a great year.

Q. When you win such a big tournament like the Evian, how do you keep your expectations in check?

MINJEE LEE: Yeah, I mean, I didn't think winning Evian really changed me as a person, but obviously in my golf game I'm a little bit more confident in just the way I can play. I think I'm still the same person, still trying to do my best every single week.

Q. What are your plans for the off-season now that you finally get one?

MINJEE LEE: You know, I'll go back to Australia. I still have to two-week quarantine, but that's okay because I haven't been back since March. Yeah, I'm looking forward to going back and seeing the fam and seeing all my friends and seeing my coach.

Q. What's the key to passing the time during a two-week quarantine?

MINJEE LEE: Oh, Netflix, home workouts, sleep.

Q. Do you bring the clubs or the putter and putt at all?

MINJEE LEE: The last time I did quarantine, I took it out like twice. That's when you hit rock bottom, when you're really bored. Yeah, no, I will have my clubs with me.

Q. The winner on Sunday gets $1.5 million; what would you buy with $1.5 million? Have you ever thought about that?

MINJEE LEE: Maybe a new car back in Perth?

Q. What kind of car?

MINJEE LEE: I don't know. I like an SUV.

Q. Do you currently have an SUV now?

MINJEE LEE: No, I have a Honda, and I love it, but we can have another one.

Q. Besides a car or a house or any big purchase, what's been your biggest purchase to date since being a professional golfer?

MINJEE LEE: My house?

Q. Non-house or car because that's obvious.

MINJEE LEE: You know, to be honest, I don't know. I don't really like -- I'm not really into shopping or anything. I bought a Louis Vuitton bag a couple years ago, which is probably my highest purchase.

Q. Probably give some of it to Min Woo, buy him some --

MINJEE LEE: He's had a great year this year, so maybe he needs to buy me a present.

Q. What's that dynamic like when you're both playing so well on your respective tours?

MINJEE LEE: I mean, it's great fun watching him. He's been doing so well the last couple of weeks, and obviously he won Scottish Open this year. It's just been really awesome to see him grow up and mature over the years of him being a professional. You know, since I've been through it before he has, I don't give him any advice, but I can just -- I know what he feels like when he's on Tour.

I think I can relate a bit more to what he's going through, so I enjoy it more seeing him do so well.

Q. Who hits the better stinger?

MINJEE LEE: Oh, Min Woo. I don't really hit a stinger.

Q. Have you tried?

MINJEE LEE: I mean, British Open I tried, but it doesn't go very low.

Q. Coming off such a hot start going into the rest of the week with so much on the line, what are you thinking about out there? Are you just trying to keep it in check?

MINJEE LEE: No, I think with the conditions being a little bit softer and with the rain overnight, I think it's just going to be playing pretty soft all week, so maybe just play aggressively, make as many birdies as possible. The leaderboard is pretty packed and everybody is going quite low, so hopefully I can take it into the next three days.

Q. Your buddy, fellow Australian, Hannah Green, won the Aon Risk-Reward challenge this year. What's 2020 meant to Australian golf?

MINJEE LEE: You know, it's been really tough like 2020 and over the pandemic. A lot of the players haven't been able to travel overseas just with quarantine. I think for us to be doing so well on the LPGA and all the people back at home I think working hard and just really looking forward to getting back on the road and back to playing tournaments, so hopefully it can be a little bit of inspiration for them to keep working hard and do well in the future.

Q. You really caught fire in the middle of the round. What took off for you there?

MINJEE LEE: Two bogeys, but you know, my putter got hot in the middle of the round, so I think I made three birdies in a row and then a bogey and then another three or four. Yeah, I just had a good run there, and it was a lot of fun.

Q. Two bogeys, eight birdies overall amounted to that 66. What was the biggest challenge with the conditions changing today?

MINJEE LEE: Overall I think it wasn't too challenging over the course of the day. It was only really drizzling, a little bit heavier when I was finishing, but I think we got really lucky with the weather today, so really took advantage of the softer conditions.

Q. Did you feel added pressure when you were heading out there today knowing it was going to be a little bit easier to feel like you had to post a low number?

MINJEE LEE: You know, starting the day I didn't really think about it too much. I didn't know if it was going to be easy or if it was going to be hard, but considering it was really soft, you could go for a lot of the pins today, and a lot of the tees were up. I think they thought it was going to be a bit more wet. Yeah, no, it was a good day overall.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
114882-2-1002 2021-11-18 20:18:00 GMT

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