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June 17, 2005

Michael Campbell


MICHAEL CAMPBELL: Well, I teed off at 7:30 in the morning and it was very benign conditions and not much wind around and the greens were pretty receptive out there, so you could attack them little bit more. Two shots easier today, definitely. Different wind direction, but it made the harder holes a little bit easier. All in all, it was, once again, a tough day out there, mentally and physically very, very tiring. Every single shot you're focusing on what you're trying to do and do your best.

Q. Are there other three hole stretches that you've played that are tougher than 14, 15, 16?

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: No, 15 is a tough hole. You've got to just make par there. You're lucky to hit the green. It takes a very good shot to hit the green, and I think my game plan for the last couple of days is just play to the front edge or front portion of the greens every single time.

I think I went over the back of the green once in the last holes. I took a club less every time and just smashed it and came up way short. Basically if you just aim for the middle of the greens, this golf course you'll be 20, 30 feet away each time. That's pretty good chances. Obviously if you go short, club in your hand, sand wedge or lob wedge, you aim again a little bit more towards the pin, but besides that you've got to aim for the middle of the green every time.

Q. Do you get a sense it's harder now than it was at 7:30 this morning?

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: Absolutely. When the fairways and greens dry up, it'll be harder to attack the pins out there, and I think I'm happy just to stand here in front of you guys and be even par after two rounds in a major championship.

Q. Can you go through your birdies and bogeys, please?

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: I had six birdies and five bogeys. I can't remember them (laughter).

Q. Six birdies out there, though, a lot of talk yesterday that you would not be seeing a lot of birdies on this course. Even Hedblom who shot a 66 today said he thought the course was playing a bit easier than yesterday.

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: Absolutely, this morning especially, at least two shots, as I said before. There wasn't much wind around, and the greens were soft. You can attack the pin a little bit closer, and obviously Peter's round was a fantastic round. 4 under in a major championship at any time is a great score. You know, I had six birdies today, had a couple of three putts out there, but I'm just happy just to sign my score card for 69 today.

Q. 69 is a good

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: I think our target this week is to shoot 1 or 2 under is probably going to be a winning score this week. If you talk to all the guys out there in the locker room or here or whatever, general consensus really is even par, 1 under is going to win this golf tournament. That's my goal this week.

Q. Just talk a little bit about going into the weekend of a major championship and being right there at this point.

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: Well, my preparation for this major championship has been pretty good. My form has been pretty okay over in Europe, a few Top 10s there before I came here. I changed my whole dynamics of who I've been working with the last six months or so. Jonathan Yarwood, who's based in Sarasota, and I made a few changes, also. That's helped me a lot. Now I've been playing major championships for probably the last ten years. I've played a lot of U.S. Opens, Augusta and British Opens and U.S. PGAs, and I can adjust very quickly. I think it takes a couple of days to adjust your putting stroke because obviously the greens here are a little bit faster than normal and the aprons around the greens are a lot tighter so you've got to change your chipping technique, as well.

So the combination of all that together is the thing I really feel comfortable today, and today and yesterday my course management has been pretty good so far.

Q. And being there with a chance to

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: Yes, it's pretty exciting. I've been close a long time ago, '95 British Open I finished 3rd, I was leading after three rounds. Seems like a century ago. But ten years ago.

I know what it takes to win a major championship. It's nice to be up there amongst the best in the world now.

Q. You have not made the cut the last four U.S. Opens. Just talk a little bit about going into a Saturday, the opportunity to do that.

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: It's kind of nice actually, to actually do that for a change, to actually play four rounds. I think just basically my mindset this week has been pretty positive. I went out there today and yesterday and just had a bit of fun and saw what happened. I didn't put too much pressure on myself to perform, tried to treat it like a normal tournament and just tried to play. Tried to ignore the crowds, there are huge crowds out there and just treat it like a normal tournament.

Q. Most guys that come here give us a sense that it's an ordeal. Where is the fun in this?

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: Shooting good scores and making birdies out there and just being appreciated by the crowd on good shots because it's tough out there. Guys hitting 4 irons to 30 feet away is a good shot. The fun really is just competing with your other fellow peers. 150 guys out there playing, the best in the world here, and competing against them is a lot of fun for me.

Q. How long ago did you change and employ the coach in Sarasota?

MICHAEL CAMPBELL: He's been with me now for the last eight years, but he had two jobs at the same time. He couldn't come out most of the time last year, so I decided to employ him full time this year, and it's really worked dividends so far.

End of FastScripts.

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