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Shane Lowry: 'Things have not gone great over the last few weeks, so it's nice to shoot a decent score'

The Offaly man was pleased with his opening round at The Players Championship, but is ready to put it behind him and drive on today.

Going well: Shane Lowry.
Going well: Shane Lowry.
Image: David Rosenblum

SHANE LOWRY SAYS he was “happy” with his strong start and opening round 68 at The Players Championship, but is not getting ahead of himself.

The Offaly man is in joint third place at TPC Sawgrass, three shots off the lead held by Sergio Garcia.

Lowry enjoyed a bright start yesterday, and was tied for second at five-under after a brilliant birdie on the par-three 17th, but frustratingly, he dropped a shot at the last to finish on four-under.

While that bogey at the end was disappointing, the 2019 Open champion hailed a good day in all in Ponte Vedra Beach, Floridaafterwards. 

“I was happy,” Lowry said. “I think things have not gone great over the last few weeks, so it’s nice to go out there and shoot a decent score. I’m pretty happy.

“I didn’t do much different than I have been, holed a few putts that managed to go in. It was quite nice. Difficult golf course. I watched a bit of the golf this morning and I could see how difficult it was playing and, but that excites me. That kind of gets me, gets my juices flowing, and I like that type of golf.

“And look, I love this golf course. This is one of the best we play. And when I arrived here, I missed Bay Hill and arrived here on Sunday, and I came out and did a bit of practice and I couldn’t believe the condition it was in. It’s one of the best-conditioned golf courses I’ve ever seen. So credit to everyone involved. But, yeah, it’s nice to be out there.”

When asked about the changes to his putting he’s mentioned of late, Lowry continued:

“I changed my grip. I’ve been left hand low my whole life and I’ve gone right hand low this week and I did it for a couple of rounds. I did it the final round at Concession and had the best putting round of my season so far. And I didn’t do it last week.

“I kind of went back to left hand low on trying to figure it out that way. And I know I’m a good chipper and I know I’ve got good hands, so I kind of figured that if I can stand up and just putt like how I chip, and putt with a bit for feel and kind of react to the line as opposed to trying to get everything so perfect, it’s nice.

But, look, I know more than anyone today is one day. I’m not getting ahead of myself. I kind of have to kind of relax and put today behind me and keep going tomorrow and try and shoot as good a score I can.”

“It’s tough at times,” he later added, “but I’ve never been one to kind of shy away from a challenge. So I’m really prepared to go out tomorrow and shoot as good a score as I can and hopefully I’ll be in a good position this weekend.”

Tied with England’s Matthew Fitzpatrick and Canadian Corey Conners, Lowry is back in action at 12.50pm Irish time. 

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Brian Harman on his own in second after he shot a 67, while 2017 Masters winner Garcia leads the field after carding 65 in a standout display on day one.

In stark contrast to Lowry, Rory McIlroy struggled desperately as he posted a 79, the low point being the quadruple bogey on the 8th. Graeme McDowell hit a 73, and sits tied for 60th on one-over.

Screenshot 2020-11-24 at 9.04.07 AM

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Emma Duffy

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