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August 17, 2019

Tony Finau

Medinah, Illinois

Q. Tony, if I told you at the beginning of the day you'd fire a 68 and be right in the mix of it tomorrow you probably would have taken it. Walking along side with what Justin did today, you lose perspective.
TONY FINAU: I've been around enough for golf. That was really impressive. He played extremely well. It's fun to watch. Whenever you see a guy playing that well in a zone, really cool. He was already playing well and that shot on 16 put him over the top from well to really well.

We play well together. It seems to be that way. We're pretty comfortable around each other. When he holed out in Mexico I was playing with him. He lost in the playoff to Phil but I think we're both pretty comfortable playing with each other. That was special to watch.

Q. How much razing did you give him because you had the shot of day then he clips you on 16 with a hole-out.
TONY FINAU: All I said was we're pretty dang good. I don't know what the odds of a two-sum holing out twice, full shots. That was pretty cool. To have that mojo in the group right from that.

I think he birdied the first six or five or whatever. I holed out and birdied. We had good mojo and that's good to have on a day like today where we knew we had to score. Guys are going to be chasing us down. Looks like we'll be one and two going into tomorrow.

Q. I thought tee to green everything look really good today. Tightening up on a couple putts. You have a low one just like Justin?
TONY FINAU: No doubt. I've been hitting it great all week. Hitting it close enough to score. I got to get a few more putts to fall, especially tomorrow. I'll be chasing JT. It's a tall task. He's playing some good golf. Who knows what can happen. Anything can happen on Championship Sunday.

Q. Give you a 61 tomorrow.
TONY FINAU: Sounds good to me. Thanks.

Q. Just give us your assessment of the day.
TONY FINAU: Really fun day, honestly, start to finish. Justin birdies, JT birdies the first five. I hole-out on 4. Kind of get in the mix and get us going. Really just great mojo in the group. There was nothing that either one of us did that was crazy. We both made one bogey today.

Other than that, really clean cards. JT shot 61. Really impressive golf. This golf course, when I played here on Tuesday for the first time I was almost convinced single digit was going to win. It's a long golf course. I felt like it was going to firm out. Obviously hasn't firmed out. If you would have told me somebody shoot 61 this week I would have told you that's a joke.

Q. Are the conditions the only reason why everybody is going low or is there another reason?
TONY FINAU: Just the conditions, I think. The fairways are wider because they're not bouncing and the greens are bigger because -- it doesn't matter the type of spin you put on it, it's not going very far, forward or backspin they're not going very far.

When we have our number, we're trying to hit our number. There's no calculation. That makes it easier for us to calculate when we don't -- there's not that much running through the heads. How far is the flag?

Q. Tony, you know how in baseball the pitchers have a perfect game going you stop talking to him? Are you familiar with that tradition in baseball?
TONY FINAU: I've heard of it.

Q. Is there anything like that when the guy is going as low as this guy was today?
TONY FINAU: No. We've known each other for a long time. We both graduated from the Web in 2014. Played a lot of events on the Web.

We're very comfortable playing with each other. I know him very well. Again, for the last five years I've gotten to know him, we were on the Ryder Cup team together. We feed off of each other. He played extremely well. He didn't miss a shot. Even the shot on 15 he did miss, he almost holes the birdie from 75 yards or whatever. Yeah. We had good mojo and hopefully we will tomorrow.

Q. Tell us about the eagle on 4.
TONY FINAU: That was huge. I hit three great -- I didn't really mess a shot through three holes. Nothing -- I didn't really get anything out of it. Missed a birdie putt on 1 and 2, missed the birdie putt on 3.

With JT kind of running away there I knew I needed to make something happen and so eagle 4 and birdie 5 and kind of got myself back into it with JT.

Q. Couple guys that have looked at these low scores today and throughout the week and said it's a sign some of the skills being taken out of driver that when it's like this, you guys can just hit it straight, you don't have to shape it, that the driving is a less skillful part of game.
What are your thoughts?

TONY FINAU: Yeah. JT and I talked about it a little bit. Lot of the fairways are sloped, meaning you have to curve the ball the opposite direction if they were firm to stay in the slope.

I mean there's a lot of skill, skilled players out here. Guys will find a way no matter how the conditions are. I learned that being on the PGA TOUR. Somebody is always going to shoot low no matter how the conditions or what golf course we're playing.

We're getting the best of Medinah this week but in a heartbeat this golf course changes and we come back in the future, it could be a whole different story.

Q. JT obviously knows how to go low but does it ever get to the point of almost kind of to the ridiculous stage?
TONY FINAU: When he holed out at 16 you just shake your head. Again, he's already playing great. The tournament is not over. We've got -- 6 back, got 18 holes to go. Lot of things can happen on Championship Sunday.

I know he's playing great golf if. He plays well tomorrow he'll be hard to catch. That's the bottom line. You shake your head sometimes when I think he chipped in on 14, in the water on 15, almost holes that for birdie and holes out on 16.

I'm kind of on the side doing my thing. I hear people going nuts. He just holed out. You just shake your head and you're happy for guys that it can happen. I've got some ground to make up tomorrow.

Q. Is it good or bad for you when you're actually in the moment playing with someone like that?
TONY FINAU: Great mojo, yeah. I don't really press. I'm pretty aggressive when I play anyway. There's nothing that changed. I hit a good shot after I holed out. I had some looks coming down the stretch.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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