Richard Sterne – R3 interview
Q. 7-under around St. Andrews, third round, great position, how does that feel?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, pretty good. It was pretty benign weather, so you had to take advantage today and fortunately I did. I made a few good putts at the right time and a couple par saves, which kept things going.
Q. What’s it like playing around this great track?
RICHARD STERNE: Fantastic. I’ve got great partners today, great amateurs, as well. So coming in on 18 here with this weather and having a look around is really special.
Q. You’re tied third at the moment and only a couple shots behind the leader, any thoughts going into the final day?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, it’s going to have to be a good day. You’re going to have to shoot a pretty good score, if the weather is calm, guys can’t shoot low around here, so you’re going to have to probably put another 6-, 7-under in at least to have some type of a chance.
Q. Do you think if the wind gets up, that will suit you more?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, I’m hitting it pretty good, so I wouldn’t mind a bit of wind. Make things a bit more interesting. It’s pretty tough if it blows with this direction in that back nine. It can get long and so you’ve got to hit pretty good shots coming in.
Q. What is it like playing with a fellow South African out there?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, he played nicely. Thomas was struggling on 16 and 17, and he needed to make pars and he did and he needed to to make the cut, I’m happy for him.
Q. When you’re playing the Old Course in sublime weather conditions, how is that?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, it’s as good as it gets. There’s nowhere else you’d rather be playing golf on a day like this. So you have to take advantage in this weather and fortunately today I did.
Q. Is the course there for the taking?
RICHARD STERNE: Well, it is in this weather. It gives you a lot of opportunities. You’ve still got to hit the right shots, and put the ball in the right places. There’s still some tough bunkers that you’ve got to avoid and you’ve got to take some on at times, as well.
So the key is to putt it in the right places on the greens and hopefully hole a few putts.
Q. How does it feel to be competitive knowing that you’re up there day upon day?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, it’s nice. It’s nice to be up there. I haven’t finished something off this year where I’ve been up there, so hopefully tomorrow something good comes around and just try and go out and enjoy the scenery and make a few putts at the right time like I did today.
Q. Is it beneficial to play the same course two days in a row like this?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, I think so. I think if the weather is the same, it does help, and let’s see what the wind does tomorrow. If the back nine is into the wind, it’s going to be tough coming in. I hit some good shots coming in today and I was quite happy with it.
Q. You touched on this yesterday, that you’ve had some good performances, good finishes but not necessarily have the victory chances. So is there a different way of approaching the final round when you’re up there like this?
RICHARD STERNE: Well, just going to have to avoid mistakes, really, make birdies instead of bogeys. If the weather is calm tomorrow, you’re going to have to putt in at least a 65 or a 66 to have some type of chance. Obviously it looks like Tyrrell is playing well, so he’s either three or four ahead of me. It’s going to have to be a pretty good one tomorrow.
Q. Do you draw on previous experiences, previous victories?
RICHARD STERNE: Yeah, definitely, if it comes down to that, you always try to go back to good shots at the right time under pressure, holed putts at the right time. If it comes down to that tomorrow, then I’ve got a few things to look back on.
Q. Does the dynamic change with a partner?
RICHARD STERNE: The first three days is lovely, and playing with Mr. Rupert today was fun. Nice to see him play well, as well. He needed a couple pars and he made that and that was good for the team to make the cut.