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June 17, 1999

Billy Mayfair


LES UNGER: As we chatted informally here, this seems to be a pretty popular number, 3-under. How about an overview of your round.

BILLY MAYFAIR: I'm thrilled to death about shooting 3-under. I got off to a good start. The weather was kind of a factor at the beginning, it was raining pretty hard when we teed off, and that kind of cleared up. The golf course is actually probably the most susceptible of making birdies we'll see all week because of the wetness of the rain yesterday, last night and this morning. Overall I was happy with my round. I drove the ball good, hit good iron shots. When I hit, I hit a good putt off the edge of the green or a bump-and-run shot. So overall I'm real happy with it, and just going to get ready for tomorrow.

LES UNGER: Other than the routine pars, would you give us a little recitation on your holes, there.

BILLY MAYFAIR: I started, I made birdie on the first hole, 8-iron from about 160 yards, about 20 feet short and really just hit a real good putt there, straight uphill putt and made that putt for birdie. I hit a 4-iron in on No. 2 from about 190 yards to about 25 feet, and misread the first putt, knocked it about four feet by and to the right. And lipped the next one out coming back, and I had a 3-putt. I kept on going. On 4 I hit a wedge for probably about 110 yards and spun it back about 2 feet from the hole and made that for birdie. No. 9 I hit a 6-iron from 170 yards about 20 feet below the hole and made that for birdie. On 10 it was a 3 shot, par-5. And hit an 8-iron in from about 140 yards. About 20 feet from -- about 20 feet right of the hole and made that. And after that I didn't play bad, didn't maybe hit as good of iron shots as close as I can. I think from 12 on it's hard to make a lot of birdies because of the greens, and you've got to hit the fairways, you have long irons into the greens. And if you're going to make a birdie you're going to make a long putt to do it.

Q. Are you and Tammie expecting a baby?

BILLY MAYFAIR: Yes, we are.

Q. What's the due date?

BILLY MAYFAIR: The due date is December 6th right now.

Q. Do you know if it's a boy or girl?

BILLY MAYFAIR: I don't know, we'll find out right before we go to the British Open.

Q. We were asking Phil earlier about the collection areas, and when you miss a green here and a lot of balls are falling in the same areas, are you finding that there's a possibility at least where you could actually end up in an old divot or in the worst case scenario your own, if you happen to kick it up and it rolls back down, is that something that will develop?

BILLY MAYFAIR: I think so, I noticed that after the practice rounds yesterday. Everybody is chipping or hitting pitch shots from the same area. I don't think they're divots, but the grass is torn up. If the ball rolls down in there, you can have kind of an awkward lie. Now with it being as wet as it is today, and some guys probably instead of the bump-and-run shot they may be pitching more, there may be more divots. But obviously it can become a factor as the week goes on. Once it dries up, I think most of the guys are going to be putting it, so the divots are not going to make that much of a difference.

Q. How do you feel about your start with the other two tied for the lead as we speak and your expectations for the rest of the week?

BILLY MAYFAIR: Well, obviously I'm thrilled to death. I went out today and did exactly what I wanted to do, going out and shooting 3-under, and being tied for the lead right now, at least, gives me a lot of confidence. For the rest of the week, I just want to take one day at a time, try not to think about what that tournament means, try to play down the importance of everything, and go out there and try to have fun and enjoy the next three days.

Q. John Daly is 4-under.

BILLY MAYFAIR: Yeah, he must be on the 4th hole. I saw he birdied the first two on the board there. But I want to be surprised if someone comes in at four or five under. I'll be surprised if someone gets over 5. But right now the conditions are pretty good out there.

Q. A couple of questions. Does this course set up for you better than most major championships, and how about Phil out there today, you guys are pretty close, do you know what he's thinking?

BILLY MAYFAIR: I don't know what Phil is thinking, but I said at the beginning of the week, if this was a good major championship golf course for Billy Mayfair, because the rough wasn't that long, you don't have to hack it out of the rough, out of the fairways, and I think I'm a real good short game around the greens, and now having a lot of different options, I think it plays into my game a little bit, and it plays into Phil's game, too. What is Phil thinking? Obviously he's playing really good. I know he played well at Memorial. We talked a little bit last night, he feels real good about the way he's playing. Obviously he's got Amy on the mind. He knows if Amy's baby -- I should say if their baby comes he can get home in time. He knows that if it comes today, tomorrow or the next day, he'll go, I know he will. But he knows he can get home in time. He can't worry about it, he has to play the best he can. And if Mother Nature let's the baby come, he'll be home in time.

Q. If you and Phil are in the final twosome on Sunday, he'll leave whenever the beeper goes off, do you have his beeper number?

BILLY MAYFAIR: I've got his beeper number, yes, I do. You know, I don't know -- yeah, I'll probably call his beeper for fun, but I have his beeper number, but that would be an interesting situation.

Q. He also said Amy has a secret code.

BILLY MAYFAIR: Well, Amy and Tammy talk a lot on the phone, so Tammy might learn the secret code by the end of the week.

Q. If the course dries out the way everyone expects it, do you see it changing dramatically from today to where you're going to have to adjust your game a lot over the next couple of days?

BILLY MAYFAIR: I think so. I was talking to some of the guys who played here a couple of weeks ago, and they were telling me how they had to bump-and-run the ball a lot more into the greens, and I haven't seen that yet. Since I've been here on Tuesday it's been kind of wet and soft. But obviously if the golf course dries out, yeah, you're going to have to change your game a little bit. And I think one of the shots you might have to change it to, instead of a tight 8-iron, take a 7-iron and hit it short and bounce it up a little bit. It's one of those things that you've got to kind of learn the golf course as you go along.

Q. Billy, as the greens dry out, there's so many contours in the green, is there a likelihood that they'll dry unevenly, and turn it into a guessing game as to where it's firm and where it's soft, that sort of thing?

BILLY MAYFAIR: No, not really. If there's only one green out there that I can think of, and that might be 18. They've got that little gully there on 18. That can stay a little bit wet longer. But obviously the greens are built up so high, they're built on such a good sand base, they'll dry out and be very consistent.

LES UNGER: Thank you.

End of FastScripts…

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