June 25, 2021
Cromwell, Connecticut, USA
TPC River Highlands
Q. Russell, one bogey through 36 holes. How would you assess your play over the first two days?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Yesterday I was a little sloppy mentally and just my iron play was not good and just didn't feel my best.
And my short game made up for it. My short game was great yesterday and had a lot of really nice up and downs.
Today I just felt solid all the way around. Could have made a few more putts but feel like overall hitting my lines pretty well. Had a couple lip outs, but I feel good about everything.
Q. Have you caught up on any rest and recovery after the grind of last week?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I think it kind of hit me on Wednesday. I thought I was good Tuesday, and then Wednesday I remember feeling like, Okay, I'm -- that did take a lot out of me. Didn't really realize it.
I feel okay. I'm definitely going to try to chill this afternoon. But just the fact that Tiger has won 15 of these and Phil has won six, I mean, you just think of these guys winning that many majors and it's just unbelievable to think about how tough they are mentally.
Q. What did you learn about your game, yourself, and about how hard it is to win this last week?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Yeah, I feel like for me, last week a lot of it was just doing some basic things. You know, it's nothing too complicated. I don't feel like I have to do anything crazy to finish better than I did.
I take a lot of confidence feeling like I can handle more pressure than I thought I could and can hang in on a tough course. That gives me a lot of confidence, and just going to try it build on it.
Q. Do you think it's easier for you because you got right back in the mix and you're playing rather than had you been sitting home all week thinking about it?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Didn't feel easy yesterday. Yesterday I feel like I got a lot out of my round. I didn't feel energized to play. I felt a little bit tired, but I felt like my game was still there, and if I hung in there, I could still manage a good score. I was really, really happy how I played yesterday.
Today I felt like everything -- I felt a little bit better. Just kind of more normal.
So, yeah, I mean, that's the tough thing about out here, just recovering and trying to get back a few days later.
Q. Were you paying attention at all to the leaderboard and seeing what Kisner was doing?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I saw Kiz make an eagle on 15 when I was on the 17 fairway, but I'm second off, so there is a lot of golf to be played. I think it's going to warm up. It's not going to be raining on these guys this afternoon.
There is some PGA TOUR golfers that are going to rip this course up and play great. I'm probably going to be in decent position going into the weekend, but I would imagine going to be a lot of low scores, and that's what I would expect.
Q. What does it say about where your game is that you can go from leading the U.S. Open, being in those final groups over the weekend, to being right back in contention here just a few days later?
RUSSELL HENLEY: Yeah, I mean, I think -- I'm just learning how to not change. I feel like typically over my career if something is off I like to change it, and instead I'm just kind of being a little more accepting of where my game is and just playing through it.
That kind of feels like the big change. I don't feel like there is as much stuff going on in my head. Yeah, gives me confidence. I feel good, like I'm capable of playing great. Just a matter of me doing it.
Q. Is that a learning curve you've had just knowing not to change things?
RUSSELL HENLEY: I think so. I think it's a lack of confidence when you're trying to change something all the time. For me it's when it's not perfect I feel like I'm trying to make a change.
But I feel like I'm getting more confident and just starting to believe more consistently in my game. Hopefully I can keep playing well.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports