Media Center Interviews

March 31, 2022

First Round Interview with Aaron Rai

Q. Aaron, 67. If we can get some comments on your play today.

AARON RAI: Yeah, it was a very solid round today. Drove it very nicely for the most part, hit a lot of fairways on the front nine, which was the back nine on the course. Created a lot of opportunities and rolled some putts in, so it was pretty simple when a day goes like that. It felt pretty flowing out there, which was nice when you don't have to flight too many things or kind of be too aware of the golf course, just kind of play golf and trusted what was happening, which is really nice. Yeah, nice to get off to a good start.

Q. Making your first start here obviously. What is the key when you're seeing a golf course for the first time just in terms of like trying to get success here this week when you don't have a lot of history here?

AARON RAI: That's a great question. I think for me, figuring out the speeds of the greens and what kind of shots are going to be required around the greens is important. The yardage books we were given are very, very good, so as long as we kind of see the course once, you kind of get a feel for the sightlines and where you need to be. But mainly just the misses, how the course is playing, talking to the players with how the course can change during the week as well because it's very rare for a course to stay the same when you see it on a Tuesday and by the time we play it on a Thursday, Friday and then a Sunday, it plays very differently. So I think putting together how the course is on the Tuesday and having in mind how the course is going to change and I think that's where it's very good asking questions and speaking to people who have been here for a long time. So those are the most important things for me.

Q. And now playing your 16th event of the season, is there any fatigue right now or are you feeling fresh? How's the game right now?

AARON RAI: Yeah, I'm feeling pretty fresh. I went back home to the U.K. for a couple of weeks during the weeks of THE PLAYERS and the Valspar, which was much needed because I'm spending a lot of time on the road over here, which is amazing, I really enjoy it, but it was nice to have that reset ones in a while.

And game wise, it's not too far away. It's not been as consistent as what it could be, but there are good signs and today is nice to be able to see the game coming together and performing in all different aspects from the putting to the short game to the full game. So it's there or thereabouts, but a little bit more consistency is needed going forward.