Quick Quotes - Friday, January 20, 2017
GREG OWEN: It was, it felt good today. I hit a lot of close shots and holed out. I just missed one short one on the back nine. But I was in a little old hole. And other than that, delighted. Finish off strong on a strong hole on the last hole.
Q. What's good about your game the last 36 holes?
GREG OWEN: Keeping it in play. Giving myself chances. Holing the putts I should be holing. Just what good golf does.
Q. It's a good spring board now going to what they say is the hardest course tomorrow.
GREG OWEN: Yeah, exactly. I wish we would have, with the way the weather's been today, it would have been a lot nicer playing that well on the Stadium Course. But everyone's got to play it, so we just go out and just play as well as we can. There's still a long way to go.
Q. How long was that putt on 15?
GREG OWEN: 15 feet. It was nice. It was the only one I holed, really, today. Everything else has been close. It's been one of them days where the wedges go close and, again, I played the par-5s well. It was nice.
Q. Have you been traditionally a good starter of a new year?
GREG OWEN: Last year I finished fifth in Hawaii. This year, this event has never been a strong event for me. Scoring's not quite as low as it has been in previous years. But I'm holing the putts that you would expect to hole and that makes the difference that I don't normally do.
Q. Are you excited now going to the weekend too?
GREG OWEN: Yeah, good start. I got to sort my back out. Hopefully, it warms up a little bit because I have a back ache right now, which is a little annoying. So I missed the rain today, so, hopefully, we can get some decent weather tomorrow and just keep playing well.
Q. Have you popped a few pain killers for that?
GREG OWEN: I've done nothing. Just stretching right now. I'm going to go see the physios in a bit.
Q. When did you find out you were in the field?
GREG OWEN: About 2:30 on Wednesday.
Q. Got the call?
GREG OWEN: Yeah, John Cook told me on Tuesday that he was thinking he was going to be withdrawing, because he's got a bad shoulder. But he didn't do it until like 2:30 in the afternoon.
Q. Were you watching Phil on his status like the rest of us?
GREG OWEN: Well, yeah, obviously there's rumors and things like that, but you hope for the best and prepare as if you're going to tee off. And, if not, fly home and wait for another opportunity. There's nothing I can do. You don't want guys to be injured or anything. I felt all winter I've been playing nicely back home, not really playing anything, but just playing nicely, and I thought, just give me a chance and see what I can do and obviously I just kept it going a little bit.
Q. I couldn't see how far back you were on 15. Did you think about going for the green at all there?
GREG OWEN: I could have reached, but on that hole, there's just no point. There's just nowhere to go. Where that flag is, if you hit it one of the bunkers, it's not an easy up-and-down. So there's just no point. I was saying to my caddie on the way up the hole, if it was 15, 20 yards shorter, the hole would be a lot better, because more guys would be going for it, bringing in 7s and 8s and stuff. But, you know, not always length on a course makes it better.
Q. On the mental side of things, not knowing if you're going to be playing in this tournament or not, how is that different from going into a tournament week knowing that you're definitely going to be playing?
GREG OWEN: Normally when you get here on a Monday and you're first alternate, nine times out of ten at least one guy will be pulling out. Obviously, I didn't book my flights until Monday morning, so it was -- it's just, I expected to play. It's really weird. The trouble is it's the start of the year and you're guaranteed three rounds to get your feelings going for the year, so a lot of guys are just playing to get warmed up. But I felt like I was going to get a start and luckily for me it happened.
Q. You mentioned that this hasn't been a strong course for you, historically. What's been different these last two days?
GREG OWEN: I don't know, I just think I've come out feeling a little bit more relaxed at the start of the year and knowing that I played decently through the winter and not had to really search for anything, just come out and just try to be a lot more relaxed on the golf course now than I ever have been in the past. I didn't hit it perfectly, some of the drives were a little off, but I just feel good about my game.
Q. Getting a little more mature as you get older?
GREG OWEN: Oh, I've been doing it for 23 years now, so you get to the point where this is it, this is it.
Q. You get older, you get more aches and pains, don't you?
GREG OWEN: Yeah, it's like right in both sides, which normally it's one side, but this week it's both sides. We'll see.
Q. Lunch will taste good.
GREG OWEN: Sure will.