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July 11, 2014

Colin Montgomerie


MIKE TROSTEL: Colin Montgomerie, an even par 71 today. A good grind in some difficult conditions out there. 136 and 6-under through two rounds, one stroke lead it appears heading into the weekend here at the U.S. Senior Open. After a couple of early bogies today, really started to play some good, steady golf in the 7th hole in. Just access your round a little bit from --

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Thank you. I got off to a poor start, to be honest. I bogeyed the 3rd and the 6th with poor drives. One 3-wood to the right and one driver to the left at the 6th and it cost me two bogies, unfortunately, and then I buckled down and got on with it and the two birdies coming in, one at 7, one at 17 was good. I had opportunities in other holes but unfortunately didn't take them but when you are leading, as I said yesterday, it's not easy to repeat a good round as yesterday's was but this was as good, to be honest. 71 out there was a good effort. Breezy conditions, windier than it was yesterday, warmer and with the pack coming at you it's never easy and I was delighted to finish that way with -- hit a great shot into 16, a good shot into 17 which I holed from about four foot and then a good par at the last to -- a driver, 4-iron up there. It's a long way. Delighted the way the round finished and, you know, you can only lead and that's where I am and I look forward to getting in a position to contend for tomorrow evening and I'm playing well. It's just a matter of trying to be as patient as possible and let things happen. But it's not easy out there, not easy.

MIKE TROSTEL: Great tee shot you hit there on 17. What was the club?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: It was 180 yards 17 was playing. I wanted to pitch an 8-iron 170 and let it roll out 10 and damn near perfect. That's what it was. A good solid 8-iron for me.

MIKE TROSTEL: In these USGA Championships, U.S. Open, U.S. Senior Open, par in a good score. After the 6th, 7th hole you made a string of 9 consecutive pars before that birdie. How important was that to really start to have some consistency there and focus on par as a good score on the last several holes?

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Very much so. Aside from the par-5s, are playing over-par. Any par you're gaining on the field. Really I was watching Bernhard Langer ahead. He was doing well in holeing out and so I was just trying to keep pace with him and keep just one ahead, as I probably am. So, it's a good weekend in prospect and I look forward to playing in the last few groups at the weekend and really trying to enjoy myself as much as I can in this heat. This is severe for a Scotsman to come over here and to compete under these conditions but I look forward to it.

MIKE TROSTEL: Very good. We'll come it right up to questions.

Q. How much do you know about Scott Dunlap who, by the way, has only had one bogey in 36 holes who you're going to be playing with tomorrow?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Well, everybody in the field -- I don't know much about Scott. We played a lot of college golf I think in the same tournaments but not much together, a couple of times on the PGA TOUR. Any competitor out here that's made the cut here can play the game, believe me. I look forward to playing with him. I believe we're out tomorrow unless someone finishes really, really very strongly. I look forward to competing with anybody out here. I came out here on the Champions Tour and tomorrow should be no different. I look forward to playing with him and competing against him and the rest of the field.

Q. How important was your 3rd shot on 10 to keep the round going, stuffed in there after having to chip out?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Yeah. I made a mess of the 9th hole. Hit a good drive and pulled an 8-iron left and got a good up and down at 9. 10, I hit another poor 3-wood. I'll have a little practice session tomorrow morning to find out what was wrong with that. But, that was a lovely chip out. A great distance. Left myself 90 yards and that's my max with my L-wedge. So it was just perfect and came out well. That was key to keep that round together. If that had gone to 3-over or back to 2-over at that stage, you're pressing and I don't want to be pressing out here. I want to be more patient than having to press. It's the key to be patient and so that was key. You're dead right, the 10th hole was key to the round today.

Q. Colin, you mentioned about the heat being severe for a Scotsman. I have to ask you, why the black pants today? Is that kind of counterintuitive? What's the blank pants in 100 degree heat?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: It's the only pair that fit me. Put on a bit of weight (laughter). They're actually dark navy, not black. I'm not that stupid. You'll probably see them tomorrow. That's where I am with that. You'll see them the next two days as well. I'm sorry. It's the only pair that fit (laughter). I'd love a pair white ones. I'm not that in shape for white.

Q. You're not going to go all Gary Player on us and go all black?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: What the hell. Might well do.

MIKE TROSTEL: Do we have any other questions for Colin?

Q. Colin, having played this afternoon in hot and dry conditions, in retrospect, how much would you say the rain impacted scoring conditions on Thursday morning?
COLIN MONTGOMERIE: I think it was easier yesterday when the course was slightly damp, yes. The ball was stopping quicker yesterday than it was today. The ball is beginning to release. As I say, there on 17 I'm allowing for a ten yard release with an 8-iron. That's a lot. And I anticipate it will be firmer and faster tomorrow, too. So, the front pins are most difficult to get to. The back pins are okay but they put the pins in the front and you're running out ten yards, it's very difficult to get close to them. So, it impacted on scores today. The scores today slightly higher than they were yesterday.

MIKE TROSTEL: Any other questions? Colin, 65, 71, 136, 6-under for the Championship and a one stroke lead. Enjoy your Friday night.

COLIN MONTGOMERIE: Thank you very much lads. Thank you
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