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June 4, 2004

Jack Nicklaus


Q. Do you think you're right around there today?

JACK NICKLAUS: Yeah, I think I'll make the cut with that. I played considerably better today, hit the ball pretty good today, hit a couple off shots, but not too many. I hit it really close on the front nine at 3, 4, 5, 6 -- not 3 -- 4, 5, 6. I hit it inside ten feet and missed all three of those. Then I struggled for a couple holes.

Probably the most exciting shot of the day was probably 12 when my ball carried into the hole, went down to the hole -- it must have bounced 20 feet up in the air -- the bottom of the hole, never touched the edge of the hole, went cleanly down in, bounced down, and kicking from there it can go anywhere, ends up on the fringe. I end up missing the green after holing it in the hole. I said, how long did it stay in the hole? He wanted to know whether we could count it (laughter).

Then I made some nice pars at 13, 14.

Then 15, I hit a good tee shot but horrible second shot to the left of the green, pretty nice pitch down to about 18 feet, I guess, and I watched Zach pitch it in from the left side of the green and I took the same line and threw it in the same way and made the only birdie I made all day. And then I took just off the left side of the green of 16 and made bogey and parred the last two holes. Missed a good chance here at 18. I know the putt doesn't go left. Why would I make it go left? It hasn't gone left in 30 years. Anyway, it didn't go left.

Anyway, I played decently, not great, but decent, so hopefully that will be enough to play tomorrow.

Q. Did you have to make that putt on 18?

JACK NICKLAUS: Yeah, I don't think 4 will make it. He says there's only a couple of 3s on the golf course. He says if it goes into the 3s it'll go to 4 pretty easy. 4s may make it. Right now it's 2. You've got wind, and I think 3 to 4 will make the cut.

Q. 18 has been tough for the guys. They've come to 18 with the lead, Justin had it to 9-under, came to 18, made double --

JACK NICKLAUS: Tough golf course. 16 and 17 we played right into the wind. You get to 18, you think the wind is in your face, but 18 really goes at a little different angle. And actually, I played my second shot at 17 with a 4-wood and couldn't get it there. I hit it as good as I could and it stuck up in the wind and it stayed on the bank just short of the green.

18, I tried to hit driver because of the tee shot at 17 because it's into the wind, and I hit it up there 135 yards to the front of the green and played 7-iron. Actually the second shot was played downwind. It's kind of strange. That's where the guys get a little confused.

Q. You said you played better than yesterday?

JACK NICKLAUS: I hit the ball distinctively better.

Q. Is it because you didn't get rewarded as much or was it the golf course today?

JACK NICKLAUS: I think the golf course is a little tougher today. The greens were really quick today. I don't know what he did from last night to today, but I bet they're a good foot faster today. Some of the pins were pretty tough pins. I thought the golf course was absolutely superb. He did a great job with the golf course. The two guys, Fred and Zach, both loved the greens. They both loved the speed of the greens. The greens were just great.

Q. Many of the players said the greens were more difficult yesterday than today.

JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I think that they're quicker today. I think the pins were tougher today.

Q. That's what I meant, the pins.

JACK NICKLAUS: The pins were tougher today?

Q. Yesterday.

JACK NICKLAUS: They were pretty tough today, I thought.

Q. Do you think you're hitting the ball as well as you've hit it lately?

JACK NICKLAUS: As well as I've hit it lately?

Q. I mean, you're missing a few putts, you said, but --

JACK NICKLAUS: I made a lot of putts coming in. I made a little five-footer I had to make there. I made a six-footer at 17. I made an 18-footer at 15. I was short of the green on 14 and putted it up and made a nice little four-footer.

I hit over in the bunker at 13, hit it out and got up short of the green and played a pitch 10, 11 feet short and made that, so I made some putts. I had to make a second putt at 10. That was just about six feet. You couldn't keep the ball around the hole. The ball just kept slipping by the hole four, five, six feet all day long, and I was making all the seconds putts. That's pretty good putting. Early in the round I just didn't get the birdies in. That's a pretty decent round of golf for an old man.

End of FastScripts.

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