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June 27, 2019

Tom Watson

Notre Dame, Indiana

Q. I'm not going to mention your age.
TOM WATSON: It's always a hoot shooting your age, especially in the U.S. Senior Open. That's pretty cool. You know, I was very happy about that. It came down to the last hole, and I needed to -- I hit a good shot in there in a real tight flag position on the 9th hole there. It's only four yards left and right of the flag, and I hit a beautiful shot in there, but then I gagged the putt. It could have been a 68, but I also chipped it in for par at 14 today after -- it's one of those, hit a bad shot out in the right stuff, and I hit it from the heavy stuff over the green just in the fringe, and I chipped it in for a par. So that was where I made up my ground today on that hole, where I could have been -- it could have been really ugly.

Q. Do you remember the first time you shot your age?
TOM WATSON: Yes. The first time I shot my age was at the Toshiba Classic at Newport Beach Country Club. I shot 63 when I was 64.

Q. You were on the range yesterday trying to work on some things --
TOM WATSON: Yeah, I figured something out yesterday. I figured out a little bit -- something that worked for me today. Who knows whether it'll work for me tomorrow. I worked on my putting, and I changed something on my approach to my putting, and that seemed to work pretty well today. I made some good putts today. They were good, solid putts, and that's what I liked about it.

Q. Was it setup, takeaway, down swing?
TOM WATSON: Oh, you don't want to know the details, come on. Just suffice it to say I made some changes, and they worked today.

Q. What's it been like being here at Notre Dame, and what have you enjoyed about the experience so far?
TOM WATSON: Well, the thing that I noticed immediately when I was here and on campus when I registered, I noticed the electricity of the people here. I noticed there was something special. There was an excitement about being here on campus at Notre Dame. That was -- it was almost measurable, that people were here, they're happy, they're excited to be here. I hadn't seen that for a while.

Q. You have your own Notre Dame jersey now.
TOM WATSON: I've got one. I got Watson '19. They gave us the jerseys in the locker room today. Everybody got a '19 jersey with their name on it. We got a helmet, too, a little signed helmet. I don't know if it's real gold or not.

Q. Yeah, I'm going to guess not. That's still a pretty nice keepsake.
TOM WATSON: Oh, yeah, sure it is. They've gone all out. They've pulled out all the stops, as they say.

Do you know what that means, pull out all the stops, just for your edification?

Q. What does it mean?
TOM WATSON: It means playing an organ. You know that you have stops in the organ you pull? You pull out all the stops, you know, and then let it rip, potato chip. (Laughter.)

Q. Because of the rain yesterday and we've had so much, is part of the satisfaction playing a course that was probably even longer than you might have seen it the previous two days?
TOM WATSON: I mean, there are two things about soft conditions. One, it's easier hitting shots into the greens. The other side of the coin is it plays longer. I don't need any courses to play longer at my age.

Q. Well, Darren wouldn't give you the extra 50 yards --
TOM WATSON: No, I tried to buy for $100 from Retief today, and that was an auction process. Tom (Kite) said 200 and I said 400. He wasn't selling, though.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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