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December 13, 2019

Marc Leishman

Cameron Smith

Louis Oosthuizen

Melbourne, Australia

CHUAH CHOO CHIANG: How satisfying was that?

MARC LEISHMAN: Nice to get the first point of the week for myself. You know, to get out there and get off to a pretty strong start, and just play some good golf, really, in foursomes, it's a hard format and to make quite a few birdies like we did and have a win was nice.

Q. What's your emotional state now, when it looked like it could be 9-1 and they win 2 1/2 of the last three points, what is the team's state of mind right now?
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN: The team, if you told us 2 1/2 before today, we would have taken it, that's great. This session, we've always struggled with. The team is fine. Obviously at the end there, a little bit of momentum shift towards them with the two putts they holed on 18. But yeah, we're happy we're in a good spot and a lot of points to play for tomorrow and focus on that.

Q. Patrick Cantlay said just a moment ago that the momentum is theirs now. What do you make of that?
MARC LEISHMAN: Well, I mean, I would probably disagree. What are we 6 1/2 - 3 1/2-up? It's very early. They were tied -- they made a couple good putts on 18, definitely give them that, but I don't think you get momentum with two-putts. We played pretty well the first two sessions.

Yes, today probably didn't finish off the way we wanted to but we still halved the session. We know it's 18 holes matches and you have to be right there at the end. They made a couple putts at an important time, but if they feel that, that's great. We probably don't feel that way, so, yeah.

Q. Some people made something of you and Patrick bumping shoulders yesterday. Wondered if that was something that was done in a fun way or was he trying to make a point? Could you sort of clarify what that was about?
CAMERON SMITH: Yeah, I'm not really sure what it was about to be honest. (Laughter) I mean, I haven't said anything wrong. I just don't want to really talk about it anymore. I think it's all said and done. I've said my bit. He's said his bit. Let's just get on with our job and try and play the Presidents Cup.

Q. Did that in any way, I guess, maybe you started hot today; did that fire you up at all? Were you already fired up? How did you feel coming out?
CAMERON SMITH: I was pretty amped up yesterday to be honest. I did an early practice session, and went out there all day, watched the boys. I couldn't believe how long golf took while you're watching it (laughter).

It was a good day. I was tired at the end, and then today I was ready to go.

Q. Can you talk to us about how things finished?
CAMERON SMITH: Yeah, we played really well all day. We stuck to our guns. We played smart shots into every green today. Hit a few bad ones, but that's golf. Rickie and Gary played really good golf the last four or five holes to get it back to square, and we almost got them there on the last.

I think it was a good day. Sungjae played great. He's a great player, so yeah, I'd say definitely watch out for him. He's pretty impressive.

Q. What's impressed you most about Ernie's leadership so far?
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN: How well he prepared the whole team. I mean, our journey started at Shinnecock I think a year and a half ago when we had our first meeting. You know, I think it's probably the most prepared -- well, definitely, on a team, that I've been involved with.

And for me, it's extra special to play for a guy like Ernie.

CAMERON SMITH: Yeah, I think like Louis said, it started so long ago, and Ernie's tried so hard to get us all together and just to know each other. I think that's played probably a really big part this week.

The team room's really happy. We're all going around giving each other high-fives, doing all the team stuff. It's great. I haven't been involved with one before, but just listening to these guys, it sound like it's a pretty good mood.

Q. I guess getting back to the momentum thing and the glass-half-full and glass-half-empty; if somebody said to you early in the week you would be ahead after day two, you'd have jumped at it, I imagine.
MARC LEISHMAN: Yeah, the Americans have got a really strong team, so we knew they were going to be tough, very tough competition, and we'd have to play really well to beat them. We certainly haven't done that yet but I think we're on the right track. We're playing good golf. I think our pairings are working pretty well so far.

You know, to be three points ahead after two sessions, one of which is foursomes, and we have struggled with it at all the Presidents Cups that me and Louie have been involved with, yeah, for sure. I mean, any lead against them is good, but a three-point lead is even better. But there's still a lot of points to play for. You know, we need to keep doing what we're doing and keep improving because we know their jet-lag is going to start wearing off, and I'm sure they will start firing up. We need to be ready for it.

Q. How is Ernie the captain different from Ernie the player?
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN: I think he's a little more intense. It almost looks like he wants this more than when he's out there playing. You could see him; I love the passion. I think if you give him a club in his hand, he'll hit the shot for you. He's so into this week and he's been a real good captain.

I mean, he's been an unbelievable player, as well, but this means a lot for me seeing how he is as a captain and how involved he is. He's brilliant.

Q. His legacy is secure in this sport. Why do you think this week is so important to him?
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN: You know, I think he sees more in us than we did in the past. He made us realize what a good bunch of players we are, and he wants us to feel that 1998 feeling that they had as a team. He made us sort of believe that we can do the same. I mean, I can just say, he's been brilliant, and I think the best in the next two days is probably still to come what he's going to do.

Q. I notice you laughing on the first tee when the fans were singing about how good-looking Adam Scott was.
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN: They were singing on me, come on.

Q. My joke question was, do you agree with them. But my serious question is, can you talk about Adam's presence, his persona on the course and how it affects things out there?
LOUIS OOSTHUIZEN: I think this week it would have been great playing with any Aussie, whether Marc or Cam, and playing with Adam, it was a great feeling for me standing on the tee with him. He's such a world-class player. We started off a little rough but we sort of got our stride through the seventh hole, and then we sort of picked each other's game up quite a bit and we played great coming in.

To be next to him on a team, he'll give you 120 percent on every single shot. You don't have to worry about his mind going anywhere else. He's so focused on what he wants to do, and that just picked up my game, as well.

Q. I think you had a problem yesterday with your 2-iron. Can you tell me what happened to that and did you get a replacement?
MARC LEISHMAN: Yeah, I got it replaced. It was ready after my round yesterday. I caved my face in on the range. It happens occasionally when you're hitting range balls. Yeah, caved in. I saw it on the fifth tee, sixth tee, I was going to hit it, and I probably would have hit it on the next five holes. (Laughter) had to go with 3-iron or 3-wood.

It was a little frustrating, but it happens, yeah.

Q. There's been a lot of course about the hometown and getting all the fans behind you guys, having that kind of support much how much pride does it give you to them really showing up and how does it make you feel on the golf course to know you have that?
MARC LEISHMAN: The crowds have been amazing, numbers-wise and passion. They have been very supportive of the International Team as you would expect, and I think it's the first Presidents Cup -- well, I played in Korea; it's the first Presidents Cup that I've played where there's been a true home-crowd advantage for the International Team, which is great. That's what we wanted and I think that's what we really need.

When we do play in America, they get the home-crowd advantage, and I think it's pretty big. It's great to see them getting involved. We're feeding off it, so we hope they continue to do what they are doing.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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