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July 17, 2014

Jim Furyk


Q. A month off was good for you?
JIM FURYK: I think from a mental standpoint it was. I think my attitude was positive. The only event that I really probably skipped this year that I played last was Congressional. It just made sense for my family and I. We wanted to go out to Utah for about three and a half weeks. To take that one in the middle would have cost us a bunch of time. Mentally I'm in a good frame of mind. Mechanically and physically I felt really good over the ball. I felt confidence getting the ball in the fairway. Of course the wind hasn't blown for four or five days over here, so it's kind of maybe made it a little easier to get your rhythm and tempo and timing. I think tomorrow we're going to see is some gusty winds, I think I saw 15 to 25. So it will be the first test that we've had all week, really, with controlling the golf ball. Hopefully I'll be able to do that.

Q. After the birdie on 15, you had two par 5s in front of you and the look on your face after 18, that maybe you were disappointed that you didn't get a little more out of those last three holes?
JIM FURYK: Well, yes and no. Two pars on the par 5s from perfect drives was disappointing, but I didn't hit a bad iron in the 16, just tugged a little bit and it got up against the lip where I had a hard time. I could have aimed is it to the left side of the green, but it was hard to throw it far enough to get it to the right. I left it about 25 feet short of the pin and two-putted. So I hit it in the bunker, but could have drawn a little bit better lie. 17 was a nice par. Hit it in the right short cut of rough, and made a bad swing with my second and put it in that bunker probably some 40 yards of the pin. To knock that up inside three to four and make par kind of felt like stealing one back. And 18, it's hard to get over to the right on the second shot on 18. I did it the first couple of days back in '06 where I tugged it to the left. It's hard to make birdie from that side, but I drew another bad lie in the bunker, that 3-wood would have ran up the bunker pretty quick and ran up the face, and when it came back down it kind of buried in its own lie. Really I was extremely happy with the bunker shot, I gave myself the opportunity, just didn't hit a very good shot.

Q. When the conditions are benign, does it somewhat negate the experience?
JIM FURYK: I don't know. I think the big trick today was really trying to be patient. You go out there -- if you go out and shoot even par today, the first question that you are going to ask is, did you feel like -- you get it every time -- do you feel like you kind of let a good opportunity go today? So we go out with them and the conditions are benign, you want to put up a good score, you want to shoot 3, 4, 5-under today and get off to a good start. But then you're fighting the patience level. If you start trying to force the issue or start hitting some drivers off the tee maybe where you shouldn't or trying to chase a couple of pins, now it can jump up and bite you and make some bogeys, and all of a sudden you put yourself behind the 8 ball. The idea is stay patient. I think all the 5s were reachable today. There are some -- you know, you're going to have some opportunities out there. And so just biding your time and being patient. And I was tested a little earlier. I missed a good birdie putt at 1. I missed a pretty good birdie putt at 4, and even par through 4 and missed two inside probably eight feet. At that point it's hard to -- you've just got to keep telling yourself to stay patient. I made a good up-and-down at 5 for birdie and kind of got off to the races for a while.

Q. Did you learn anything from playing with two former British Open champions today? Darren Clarke started off poorly, and he said he was all over the map and still finished 1-over?
JIM FURYK: It's a fun experience. Darren has always been a fan favorite over here. He's a friend and someone I really like being around, so it was nice to see the reception he got today. But I was telling him on 18 it was a pretty cool thing with Tom. We had a couple standing O's on tee boxes even early this morning. Walking out there and seeing the reception he got from the crowd was pretty special. I enjoyed walking around today and kind of being a part of it and seeing it.

Q. What did you think of Tom's game?
JIM FURYK: I've been with him in three rounds over the last five days. I've seen a lot of it. It's pretty impressive. Today he didn't hit it as well as he did with me on Sunday and Monday. But I was impressed with his putting; from ten feet in was pretty solid. He made a bunch of putts today. He scrapped it around and kind of kept himself around and kind of kept himself in the hunt. It was fun to see. We should all be so lucky at 64, I'll say that.

Q. (Inaudible.)
JIM FURYK: Yeah, I think it was a goal of mine not to try to put extra pressure on myself or play well. How I play this week really has no effect on how I may play later on in the year if I was to make the team. So it is a little odd in one respect but it's still -- I've kind of chosen to look at it as a pretty cool opportunity to play with Tom Watson at the Open Championship and to see the fanfare and the people around him. And really to watch him, go out there and shoot 1-over, it couldn't have been a lot better.
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