Rory McIlroy: Round Three Flash Interview
Q. Is that a tough of setup as you've seen in a Major championship?
RORY McILROY: It's up there, it is. It's very tough. And I'm sure they wanted to do that seeing the scores from the last couple of days. And, yeah, some of the pin positions were -- a lot trickier than we've seen the first two days. The greens were a lot firmer, they didn't get the rain last night that they expected. And, yeah, it was a tough test, a real test of patience, a test of if you're going to miss shots, miss it in the right place. I missed it in the wrong place most of the time at the front nine, and that is sort of what led to shooting 40 or 41 or whatever it was on the front nine.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, I pitched it into the upslope. I pured it. I put as much spin as I possibly could on it, and it still goes over the back. But it's the U.S. Open and that's what you expect. You expect your good shots to not work out sometimes. I felt the exact same way on the third hole. Hit 8-iron in there. At one time it looked about two feet from the hole, and all of a sudden it's off the green. Again, it's a U.S. Open and it's a premium on precision and putting your ball in the correct places and I didn't do that on a few holes today and that's what cost me.
Q. Are you disappointed you're not in a better position?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, of course I am. I'm very disappointed that I couldn't really keep it together today. And even if I was somewhere around par -- 70 out there today is a good score. If I had of shot something like that, I would have felt okay. But, yeah, just there's some holes -- I guess making bogey on 5 from the middle of the fairway with a 7-iron in my hand, bogey on 6 after hitting a really good shot, not taking advantage of 7, bogey on 9, which you really should get up and down. Just let a few shots get away from me. I mean, I've come in here playing well. I still feel like I'm playing well. I'm driving the ball well. I'm hitting really good iron shots, just not being -- just not being sort of precise enough sometimes and not missing it in the right spots where it's an easy up and down where sometimes taking your bogey and moving on.
Q. Is there an issue with trying to catch Martin?
RORY McILROY: No, not at all. I wasn't going out even trying -- I was going out trying to play solid golf. Anything around par, under par today was going to be a good score. I was trying to go out and do that. Martin Kaymer didn't even cross my mind out there today.
Q. How surprised are you about what Erik Compton did today?
RORY McILROY: It's incredible what Erik is doing, just to be playing in a U.S. Open, given everything that Erik's went through. I've gotten to know him pretty well over the last few years. And just a really incredible guy, upbeat, and obviously very talented. 3-under par out there today, I saw his name go up on the scoreboard and really impressive. 3-under par around this golf course after three days is very impressive, no matter who you are. And given everything that Erik's went through and continues to go through, I guess, it's really -- it's phenomenon.
Q. Which pins did you think were the toughest today?
RORY McILROY: There was a lot -- there was a lot that were the toughest of the week: the first hole, the third hole, fifth hole. 6 was okay. 7 was tough because they moved the tee up. It was okay. 9 was hanging off the back left. 10 was all right. 11 was fine. 12, hanging off the back left. 13 was okay. 14 on the back was okay. 16 was fine. 17 was tough from the right. 18 was pretty generous. There was a few, I'd say maybe nine really tough pins out there.
Q. One stretch of holes seems to kill you, is it like that or is it just coincidence?
RORY McILROY: Might be a little bit to do with once I get on a run and maybe trying a little too hard to get out of it and that compounds the issue. I need to figure out these nine holes of golf where instead of it being 4-over or 5-over, maybe 1 or 2-over, just limiting the damage a little bit.
Q. What was so tough about 5 today?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, honestly they moved the tee up. I only had a 7-iron in my hand for the second shot. It shouldn't be as tough as I made it look. I just missed it in the wrong spot on that left trap and then left it in there, which you just can't do. And nearly left it in there again. I had to run up and mark my ball before it started to move. Even though the pin position was very, very tricky, probably the trickiest of the week on that hole, guys are going in there with long and mid irons, if you miss it in the right spot it should be a relatively simple up and down to make your birdie.
RORY McILROY: I just need to curb my enthusiasm at times and just -- you're standing with a 7-iron in your hand on 5, for example, and knowing that actually missing the green short right isn't a bad shot. Instead of trying to hit the perfect shot, land it in the middle of the green, and when you start doing that, and it doesn't quite come off, it can make you look pretty silly.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports