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November 5, 2015

Branden Grace

Shanghai, China

Q. Opening round record at this tournament. Did you wake up this morning feeling that you were going to go low?
BRANDEN GRACE: Well, we always try to go low, whether you wake up feeling like that or you do it at the golf course are two difference things.

But it was a fun day. From the start I started hitting the ball nicely, and missed a couple of short putts which was costly. Could have been lower but made a couple nice ones that cancelled the others out. It was a good day. The ball-striking was probably the best in a long time, so that was the main key today.

Q. The last time you were here, the first time the last time you were here, you shot a 77 in your opening round. Do you remember that?
BRANDEN GRACE: I don't actually. I know I've been here a couple years ago. I didn't play it last year. That's memories of the past.

I'm a new player now. I feel the game is in a lot better place than it was a couple years ago, so I'm looking forward to the next two days.

Q. What is it about China that you love so much, having won the China Open as well?
BRANDEN GRACE: Yeah, something about this place. This place has been good to me so far, so hopefully this week is nothing different.

Q. Thoughts on to start in this wonderful manner.
BRANDEN GRACE: Yeah, it was great. Like I mentioned, from the first hole, the ball-striking was there. And you know, didn't fade during the whole round, which was nice.

Last week was decent but it wasn't as close or as good as today. I think that was the big key. Got on the greens and gave myself some birdie chances and managed to make a few, so that was nice.

Q. You've obviously been playing well in general terms, but does it help that the course is in the condition that it is?
BRANDEN GRACE: Today was phenomenal out there. Barely had a breath of wind out there and the golf course is playing, you know, probably as easy as it could be playing. There's some low scores out there. The guys are playing some great golf, and when you play on greens like this, as well, it helps. You just have to get the ball on the right line and it goes in.

But it was fun. I had the company of Martin and Paul today which was great. We had a laugh around the track and all three played well, so it's a big positive.

Q. When you're feeling good, you're bound to be aggressive anyway, aren't you, but presumably when conditions like this suit you, you've tell yourself, got to go for it.
BRANDEN GRACE: Yeah, definitely, I think I still played some sensible golf today. There were a couple things that maybe could have gone a little bit more than what I would have liked.

But I know the putting stroke is there. So if I get it going on the right line, like I said, then it's a good chance of going in. A couple were short today, get a couple distance-wise putts in tomorrow beforehand and try to sort that out.

Q. There have been so many good things across the course of the season, but I take it it's nice to keep it going at the back end of the year and keep yourself to your objectives.
BRANDEN GRACE: Yeah, definitely. I think Presidents Cup was a big boost for me. I got a couple of weeks, five weeks off before that and Presidents Cup was really helpful. Coming into these events, knowing that I'm sixth, I know one good week can change everything and give it a last final push. There's a lot still to play for.

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