Rory McIlroy: Post-Round 1 Interview

THE MODERATOR: Rory McIlroy is with us at the 106th PGA Championship.

Q. 5-under 66 but felt like you might have left a few out there. How would you categorize this round?

RORY McILROY: I don't know about that. I sort of felt like it was pretty scrappy for the most part. I don't really feel like I left many out there. I thought I got a lot out of my game today. Some good up-and-downs, the chip-in on 6.

I had a little bit of a scrappy part around the turn there, but overall really happy with -- not really happy with how I played but at least happy with the score.

Q. A bit of an adventure on 18 but you got out with a par. Could you go through that hole?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, so I was pretty sure it was in the water off the tee, and then when I got up there, I guess the two ball-spotters or marshals said they didn't really see it or couldn't really hear it. I went over to the other side just to check, but was pretty sure it was in the water.

Yeah, dropped and took my medicine, and yeah, made a great up-and-down from about 120 yards to make par, which was important after making bogey on 17. That kept any momentum that I had going into the next nine.

Q. Is it the kind of golf course that you feel like can get harder as the week wears on, or do you feel like you're going to have to keep the pedal to the metal all week?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, the greens could get a little bit firmer, so that could make it a little more tricky. But even if the fairways dry out, the zoysia, the ball doesn't really go anywhere when it lands.

I could see it getting a touch firmer, but I still think it's going to be pretty low scoring.

Q. Was it nice to be inside the ropes and just to concentrate on golf? Obviously other things going on this week.

RORY McILROY: It's always nice to be inside the ropes.

Q. We always ask players about compartmentalizing. Is that something you're good at and you're going to have to rely on this week?

RORY McILROY: Happy to be here.

Q. You hit a bunch of good wedge shots today. You mentioned one just earlier. I know that was something that Butch said you guys kind of talked about. Is there anything you're going to that's just helping you with that stuff?

RORY McILROY: I think just the same feelings I've been having with my golf swing, feeling strength in the club face on the way back, and then trying to keep that strength so that it forces me to really get out of the way on the down swing. That's the thought with the wedges and with the irons.

Q. It seems like the scores are a little bit lower today. Did you see anything out on the course and conditions that may have led to that?

RORY McILROY: It's soft. Greens are really soft, especially for the guys that played last week at Quail Hollow where the greens were particularly firm. You come to greens like this, second shots are easier. Chip shots are easier if you do miss the greens.

I think just the difference between last week in Charlotte and this week, it's a big difference, and I think for the guys that played last week. It's just a little less challenging at the minute around the greens.

Q. You've already touched a little bit on the 18th hole, but I was hoping you could expand a little more not just on saving par there, but then the very next hole it hits the flagstick and you get birdie. How key was that two-hole stretch to you getting this round today?

RORY McILROY: Yeah, it was. It was huge. I could have easily bogeyed 18 and been back to even par, and then again, that ball on 1 could have hit the flagstick and went anywhere. I could have made bogey from that. Potentially being 1-over par through 10, I'm 2-under. So it's a three-shot difference. It's a big swing.

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