June 6, 2019
Q. 67 today. Rory, give us your verdict on that.
RORY McILROY: Yeah, I feel like it's the highest score I could have shot out there. I played well. Definitely an improvement on how I played last week at the Memorial. A little bit of work that I did over the weekend and the start of this week has seemed to fit in quite nicely.
Obviously a lot of low scores. As I said, I felt like I could have gone a few lower, but it's golf.
Q. This golf course, when we chatted yesterday, you had only seen half of it. What do you think?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, I mean, very similar. Got to get the ball in play. Maybe not as much today because it's so soft. Even when you're hitting it into the rough the greens are still receptive and you can still stop it.
Hopefully if we continue to have this weather the next few days it can get a little firmer and it will start to play a little bit more like the way this course should play, which obviously would be a good precursor going into the U.S. Open.
Q. How challenging are these greens? There is a lot slope.
RORY McILROY: There is a lot of slope on them. There is so much slope that it's hard to find four hole locations on some greens. They are challenging. Your visuals have to be a lot different, trying to visualize the ball going in at like 3:00 or 9:00, try to sort of visualize that.
But, yeah, and then as well with so much slope the speed has to be spot on. That was something I struggled a little bit with today. Felt like my pace wasn't as good as it needed to be to hole a few more putts.
Q. Rory, you get in 3-under, 67. How would you characterize your opening round?
RORY McILROY: Satisfactory. I felt like I could have shot a few lower. I really feel like it was the worst I could have shot out there. I played very well. It's a really big improvement from how I played last week at Memorial. I didn't hilt it that well at all.
The work that I did over the weekend, I definitely hit it a bit better today. I hit it much better off the tee and that was a big key. You have to play out of these fairways to give yourself chances.
Q. Was that the one of aspect of your game that you were working on, off the tee?
RORY McILROY: I think off the tee and then my wedge play. I put an extra wedge in my bag this week. Went to a four-wedge setup, which I think for the most part worked today. I hit one really bad wedge shot on the 12th or 3rd hole.
Apart from that, I felt like my wedges were pretty good.
RORY McILROY: Definitely. Just for those. You know, I feel like with how short Pebble is you're flying the ball for the most part, but I think there is a lot of shots from sort of 120 to 150 at Pebble. Which if I drive it well and give myself those shots, you really need to take advantage of those, especially a U.S. Open where birdies are few and far between.
Yeah, I think so. It worked pretty well today, the four-wedge setup. It is the plan to continue with that going into next week.
Q. You saw the crowds today. First impression of the RBC Canadian Open?
RORY McILROY: Yeah, wonderful. The crowds really come out and support this event, which is great to see. They've assembled a wonderful field this year. I think the change has definitely helped us, and I think leading into the U.S. Open I think we're going to continue to see the fields improve here in Canada.
For my first experience, I've really enjoyed it so far.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports