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HNA OPEN DE FRANCE

June 30, 2018

Justin Thomas

Paris, France

Q. Tell us about your day's work.
JUSTIN THOMAS: I played well again today. I really played well this week. I've hit a lot of really quality iron shots. Kind of couldn't really get a lot going today. You know, I thought I had the opportunity to make a couple birdies.

Just left a couple putts short kind of in the heart, but I wasn't getting it as close to the hole as I was yesterday. It was a little bit more benign conditions, a little bit more windy. It should have been easier, but it was a little harder for me for some reason.

But yeah, those putts on the last two holes were huge.

Q. Just asking your caddie about the round and he said on the 9th, you had a 4-iron from 280 yard from the flag and you went 18 yards beyond it. How difficult is it to club in these conditions?
JUSTIN THOMAS: It's tough. We were between 4-iron and 5-wood and I felt if I nuked a 4-iron and kind of carried it that 255 or so over that bunker if it landed on, that was going to be really good and that's literally exactly where it landed and it went over the green. You can't plan for stuff like THAT.

The ball is going so far out there today. I don't know if it was a little hotter or what it was, but I had a hard time with my distance control until the last couple holes which are all over water, so it's harder to play shorter. It's hard to adjust with how far the ball was really going out there.

Q. Do you feel there's a good low one in there?
JUSTIN THOMAS: I'm very close but this isn't your typical golf course. I obviously would like to be where the leader is instead of where I am, but it's hard to hold a lead out here, especially on the last couple holes. You could be four or five back with really four holes left and you could still win the golf tournament, and I have 18 to make up. So you know, I'd like to be in better shape but I'm fine.

Q. How pleasing was that par on 18 to round off another great round of golf?
JUSTIN THOMAS: Yeah, it was very pleasing. It was just as pleasing as it was frustrating; the fact that I hit the wrong club off the tee. That was just a stupid mistake. Should never hit 3-wood there but I was glad that it ended up not costing us.

Q. A little bit up-and-down at the start, as well, but this golf course can punish you for not necessarily playing really poor golf?
JUSTIN THOMAS: Yeah, but my bogeys were bad. I hit a quality shot on 2 where I need to hit it 40 feet short right and I just hit a bad, bad first putt and I don't know what really happened on the second putt. The 3-putts are never good.

And I mean, 4 is just a hard hole. I hit a 3-wood where I needed to in the middle of the fairway and just tugged the second shot and the wind didn't get it as much as I thought. Those were would bogeys I shouldn't have made and those were definitely big-time setbacks.

Q. What do you mean has been the toughest part for you around here this week?
JUSTIN THOMAS: Just playing the course in general. It's a difficult golf course. I've played some of the best golf I've played this year, and I'm only 4-under par through three rounds. I mean, I was saying that to Jimmy, this place could host a major in a heartbeat. It's such a great track and you just can't fake it around here. You have to hit quality golf shots, and I feel that I've done so. Maybe just haven't quite as much to show as I could have.

Q. A little way going back into tomorrow, so what will be the strategy? This will be a tough golf course to try and chase down the lead?
JUSTIN THOMAS: Yeah, but it's also a tough place to play with the lead. It's hard to play conservative because the fairways are so narrow and you don't want to swing tentatively.

Obviously I would much rather be in that position than where I am. You never know. You get a good 10-, 15, 20-mile-an-hour wind tomorrow and I am more than right there. I just need to continue to go out and obviously some guys posted some low ones today, so there's nothing I can do about the other guys do. I just need to go out and try to play well.

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