What they said: Rory McIlroy

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September 23, 2012
PGA TOUR staff

MORE INTERVIEWS: TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola transcripts archive Q. What do you take away from this week as far as your play? Satisfied, disappointed?

RORY McILROY: Little disappointed to be honest. I didn't play the way I wanted to, especially today. I only hit three fairways, and you can't do that around this place. So I'm glad Davis has told them to cut the rough next week.

But, no, yeah. I mean, I'm a little disappointed but at the same time, Brandt really deserves to win. He played -- if you look at his stats the whole way throughout the week, he played the best golf out of anyone. He knew what he needed to do. He needed to come in here and win. He controlled his own destiny just like I did, and he was able to come and do that. So because of that, he really deserves it.

Q. How much did your lack of familiarity with the course put you at a disadvantage??

RORY McILROY: No, I don't think so. I don't think I was at a disadvantage at all. I just didn't drive the ball in and hit the ball off the tee as well as I needed to this week to give myself enough birdie chances.

Q. At what point in your round today did you stop focusing on the championship??

RORY McILROY: Probably I missed that birdie putt on 9, and then most of the back nine I was just trying to consolidate second place, if I'm honest. I was still trying to play well and trying to make a few birdies, but I didn't want to try to force the issue and drop anymore spots. So I just tried to hang on to that second position.

I didn't even know on the last whether I needed that putt or not to stay in second place, but I held it anyway, which was nice.

Q. Has it been a pretty good run for you here? I mean, really, this is your first over par round in a while, maybe going back to before the Deutsche Bank. Is it hard to sustain that for this long?

RORY McILROY: It is, yeah. But I think that is the beauty of these playoffs. You've got to treat it like a four or five-week tournament. You've got the week off. So, yeah, you've got to treat it like a four or a 16-run tournament, basically.

Yeah, of course, it's going to be hard to sustain that the whole way through. But it's great. I think it adds excitement to the end of the year. Maybe not this year. Obviously, you've got the Ryder Cup next week, so that's going to be exciting too. But it definitely gives people something to watch, and something to hang on to after the majors are finished.

Q. What was the points situation had you this year? Was that a distraction?

RORY McILROY: No, not at all. I think I just wanted to come in here and win the tournament. When I realized that I couldn't do that after the front nine today, that's when I started to focus on just trying to finish as high up as possible in the FedExCup points list.

Q. Isn't it just a little odd that you win two out of four and find yourself playing for second in the last??

RORY McILROY: Yeah, but, again, it's just the nature of the playoffs. But, you know, I had the same chance as Brandt coming into this week, and I needed to win, and I didn't. I knew what I needed to do. I just said to Justin there I wish he hadn't done me a favor in the last few holes, but that's just the way it is. I'm not going to complain. It's been a great year, and I'm very happy with how I'm playing still. I'm very excited about next week.

Q. The sixth hole kind of took you out of it. How did that play different today??

RORY McILROY: Yeah, it did. I thought I hit a good shot. I didn't ever think that it was short, and it came up pitching the bank and went in the water. So the double bogey there was very deflating, and I had to bogey the next as well. So I had two good chances on 9 for birdie, and I didn't make those. Maybe if I had made those, I could have still been in the tournament. But, hey, it's the way it is.

Q. Where did Olazabal rank as you were coming up? Was he a guy to look up to? What kind of relationship did you have with him?

RORY McILROY: I haven't really spent that much time with him, if I'm honest. He was, you might find this hard to believe, but he was probably a little before I started to watch golf. I know he won the Masters in '99, so I remember that. But then really after that, he obviously had some health issues before, and he might have had some after that as well. But obviously known for his iron play and his short game was phenomenal. And his Ryder Cup record with Seve, seeing those two, the chemistry they had and the points was good to see.

Q. Justin says he thinks the U.S. and European teams are both playing spectacular golf. Maybe this is the strongest two teams that have ever squared off. Do you get a sense that both sides are playing very well and coming into this as strong and as good as they can be??

RORY McILROY: Yeah, for sure. You look at how the Ryder Cup players have played over the past few weeks, and they've been at the top of the leaderboards. They've been winning. They've been contending. It's great. I just hope that we're all still as fresh for next week. It's been a long run. I think everyone's going to take the day off tomorrow. The ones that have played here, of course, and chill out and just get ready for the Ryder Cup because it's a long week. Not just with the golf and how much golf you have to play, but all the commitments you have outside of that. So it's a draining week, and you've got to really conserve your energy.

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