TOUR Championship

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Atlanta, Georgia, USA

East Lake Golf Club

Rory McIlroy

Quick Quotes

Q. Is it possible to describe how crazy a round of golf this was today for you?

RORY McILROY: Not really. Yeah, I got off to the worst start possible. We got a little unfortunate that we teed off in that big downpour earlier in the day. I tried to guide sort of this little peeler into the fairway at the 1st and complete double-crossed, body stopped.

So, yeah, not the best way to start, but battled back well. The golf course is really soft and really gettable, so I knew there was a lot of holes out there that you could birdie.

I knew my game was good, it was just one of those things. But not the ideal way to start, but proud of how I bounced back from that. I would have been happy just to get back to even par after the first few holes, but to shoot 3-under was great.

Q. How were you able to settle things and regroup walking off the second green at 4-over par after a triple and then bogey at that par-3?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, I think I had the 3rd hole and the 6th hole coming up that are two really good chances, so I thought, okay, if I can just get a couple back here, maybe get it back to 2- or 1-over after 9, then shoot something even under par, and was just sort of trying to methodically pick off the chances.

And I picked off a few more than that, even though I mixed a couple of bogeys in there, as well. But, yeah, I just tried to keep hitting good golf shots and good putts and I putted much better today than I did last week at Wilmington, and that was nice to see.

Q. In a normal tournament you could start at 4-over after a couple holes, but when you're already given strokes, how do you process that?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, I won the Deutsche Bank a few years ago. I was 4-over through three in Boston and ended up winning that tournament. It's not like I haven't done it before. But as you said, it's different when you are giving strokes back.

I sort of thought of Tom Kim a few weeks ago in Greensboro. He started with a quad and ended up going on to win the golf tournament.

You know, and it is possible. Anything can be done. I'm just really proud of how I fought back today.

Q. What was the degree of frustration, if at all, when you walked off the 2nd green?

RORY McILROY: I mean, at that point you're completely freed up. The rain had stopped, which was nice. It was just sort of go get it, try to get back to even par as quick as possible, and then if you can do that, then reassess your goals and go from there.

As I said, the golf course was very gettable today, very soft, so I knew there was chances out there.

Q. Was it bad weather, bad swing, bad thought, all the above?

RORY McILROY: I think there was a bit of everything in there. It was obviously the weather. I tried to hit this little guidey cut into the fairway, body stopped, double-crossed it, ball went left and OB. It was sort of -- there's a lesson in there somewhere, but even when you're not sure about what you're trying to do, sort of going full send for me is the best way forward.

Q. If there's anyone who knows how to win right here on this course, it is most definitely you; how much does that help you in terms of mindset and drive given that we're only through one round?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, I mean, it's -- the last few holes there were huge. I felt like I played myself out of the tournament the first few holes, and then I feel like I played myself back into the tournament the last few holes.

But I think this tournament is -- like it depends what Scottie does. I can go out and shoot a really good score tomorrow, but if Scottie is seven or eight or whatever he is ahead of me, then it makes things really difficult. But if I go out and shoot a good score tomorrow and Scottie has a lackluster day, then he brings a lot of guys in it, and over 36 holes anything can happen.

I think tomorrow is a pretty pivotal day for the rest of the field just to try to get a little closer to where Scottie is.

Q. Is it different at all with Cam or is it business as usual?

RORY McILROY: Business as usual. Cam and I get on really well. Always have done. Again, I keep saying, no matter what decisions are made or what choices are made by anyone, it doesn't make them a bad person. Does it make me disagree with them? Of course it does. But I disagree with a lot of people that I like and love.

Yeah, it's business as usual. If anything, he's a really good guy to play with because he plays pretty quick and he has a nice rhythm. So it's a nice pairing.

Q. Did you notice he was struggling a little bit?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, his hip doesn't seem -- he was limping there down that last hole. He played great considering, but I think the soft conditions, as well, probably aren't helping him that much.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
124071-1-1002 2022-08-25 22:23:00 GMT

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