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August 11, 2017

Hideki Matsuyama

Charlotte, North Carolina

JOHN DEVER: Good evening, everybody. Welcome back to the 99th PGA Championship here at Quail Hollow Club. Pleased to be joined by Hideki Matsuyama and his interpreter, Bob Turner.

Hideki shot a second round 64 today. That is the low round of the championship to date. He is the co-leader at 8-under par, 134. His round today included seven birdies, including five in his final five holes, and his round today was also bogey-free.

So Hideki, you were playing so, so, well when the rain came, and then nothing changed afterwards. How were you able to keep the momentum?

HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: Yeah, surprised at the rain delay, because the weather looked good to me. But I was grateful for the rain delay because I was getting tired. I was able to lay down in the locker room and get some rest.

JOHN DEVER: Well done. Three wins this year, Hideki, so far. Is this the best golf you've played in your career?

HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I am playing well. But whether it's the best that I've ever played in my career, I'm not sure.

JOHN DEVER: All right. Let's hit the floor here with some questions if we can.

Q. You're playing such very good golf at the moment. Many people in the world of golf are talking about you internationally. What would a first major title mean to you, to your country, to your family?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I'm not really sure. That's a difficult question, one that's hard to think about, what effect that would have on my life, my family's life. I'm not sure. I try to imagine, but we still have a lot of golf to play.

Q. Why were you getting tired on the back nine?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I think what was making me tired was I wasn't hitting my driver like I wanted to. I was hitting fairways but I wasn't getting the crisp contact that I was hoping for with my driver.

Q. Was there something recently that you figured out to start putting well again?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I wish I knew, Sean. You know, I don't know if it's made a difference, but I did switch putters last week. It seems that carried over well this week.

The greens here at Quail Hollow, as you know, are really fast. And there's a lot of putts that honestly, I'm not trying to make. I'm just trying to get it up near the hole, and a lot of them are going in.

Q. How much is this an extension of a carry over from last week, and how close do you feel like you're playing compared to the end of last year?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I'm probably not playing as well as I did at the end of last year. However, I'm riding the momentum from the round that I had on Sunday, and again, hopefully I can keep that going for 36 more holes.

Q. Two questions. You were doing those putting drills toward the end of last year at the Bahamas and May was helping you and things like that. Did you stop doing them?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: No, I've continued those drills every day. But it didn't seem to work. I haven't really putted that well all year until of late.

Q. To see what you've done this year with three wins and to shoot 61 on Sunday, and now be in the lead, should the rest of the players be nervous?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I don't know if the other players should be nervous or not, but this is my first experience leading a major, or tied for the lead after 36 holes. And so being a new experience, maybe I'll be a little nervous, but on the other hand, I'm looking forward to the weekend and seeing how I do.

Q. Why, if you're playing so well Sunday, did you think about switching putters or tinkering with the other one, and why did you decide to leave the mallet in the bag?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I've used the same putter as I did last week, this week. And why did I? Because that's my gamer. So there's a lot of things I need to check with my technique with that gamer.

The new putter is new, and it's boded me well, but the gamer was used just really to confirm what I'm feeling with the new putter.

Q. What needs to happen for men's golf to become as popular in Japan as women's golf? And would a win by you this week help a lot?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: That's a good question. It's difficult to answer that first question that you asked, and I'm not really sure. But hopefully, come Sunday, I can come back and visit you all here, and that would help increase the men's game in Japan; the popularity of the men's game in Japan.

Q. What was the best shot you hit today and what was the worst?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: The best shot was my tee shot at 17.

The worst shot, there was too many. I can't count them all.

Q. You shot 64.
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: Because somehow, my worst shots were finding the fairway.

Q. To follow on that, what do you consider, since you seem to have a very high standard of being happy with your round, what's the best round you've ever played?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: Probably last week on Sunday.

Q. I'm curious, when you win a big tournament like last week, do you get text messages and voicemails from other players, and if so, who are they?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: Yeah, a lot of my fellow players from Japan. Probably one that meant a lot to me, was the message I got are Jason Day, congratulating me.

Q. You had 23 putts today; you consider that you putted very well? And second question is: Do you celebrate your wins, and how?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA: I did putt well today. But 23 putts means that I was missing a lot of greens and just getting it up-and-down.

And how do I celebrate, I guess I haven't won that much to know exactly how I celebrate the wins.

JOHN DEVER: Hideki, Bob, thank you both for your time tonight and rest up and we'll see you tomorrow.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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