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July 5, 2009

Hunter Mahan


HUNTER MAHAN: I needed to be aggressive and I needed to make some putts. The pins were very tucked today.
You know, the greens are good enough to where you can make some bombs.

Q. At what point did you realize that you were at the top of the leaderboard and actually in this thing?
HUNTER MAHAN: I think it was after the par-3, I think 13, when some guy said, "You're tied for the lead now." Yeah, I knew after that.

Q. Were you watching the leaderboard at all or not so much?
HUNTER MAHAN: No, I was so far back I needed to shoot a 62 like I did just to even have a chance. I really wasn't concerned about it, I just wanted to just get some putts go early.

Q. Can you just talk about what it feels like when you're in that kind of a zone?
HUNTER MAHAN: It feels good. I felt like I was hitting it great all week, I just couldn't get any putts. That just kind of beats you up because you're hitting it so good and you're getting nothing out of it. To hit some good shots and make some putts in the final round like I did today, it feels nice.

Q. Mentally what do you do now to kind of get ready for a possible playoff?
HUNTER MAHAN: I'll take a little break here and watch some golf, figure out what happens. If I have to go hit some balls, I will, and get ready to play 18 again.

Q. In your career does this round rank up there?
HUNTER MAHAN: I think so, yeah. Final round, Congressional, amazing golf course, Tiger's event, to challenge for the lead feels good.

Q. The way you've been playing the last month or so, does this sort of cap that off a little bit?
HUNTER MAHAN: Well, we've got two majors left --

Q. I mean, just in terms of peaking and whatnot?
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah, I mean, I've been swinging it great all year and putting is finally coming around the last few months. It feels great to shoot a 62. I mean, in the final round of a big tournament like this, it just feels nice.

Q. Does this carry some momentum into the British because you have two Top 10 finishes in majors this year? Do you feel pretty good going into the British?
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah. Whether I shot 62 or 72 I was going to feel good going into the British. I love playing over there. It's just so much fun. It's such a different style of golf. I loved where my game was at going into this week, and to have a chance to win is awesome.

Q. Have you played Turnberry before?

Q. Tiger and Anthony in the final group, did that kind of take the pressure off you a little bit?
HUNTER MAHAN: Well, yeah, because I was quite a bit earlier than they were and six back of the lead. I had a lot of work to do today, and I knew that. So I just tried to go out there and play golf and really not worry about anything else.

Q. Obviously when you got to 18 you were aware where you were on the leaderboard that final putt for birdie. Talk about the psychological challenge that was there.
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah, I saw Tiger had made birdie at 10 so he went to 13. I made a great putt on 17. That was probably the biggest putt of the day. So I knew 18 with the fairways being so firm, if I hit it in the fairway I could have a chance for birdie. That's all I tried to do, just tried to hit it up there close and give myself a chance for a putt.

Q. That bogey on 14, was that just a mis-hit off the tee?
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah, I just didn't really commit to it the way I should have. It's funny, last year I think I made bogey there, then bogeyed the next hole. I mean, bogey there, I was like, it's far from over, relax, calm down, play golf, and then hit two great shots on 15 there and made birdie. It was nice to come back.

Q. Was that birdie on 15 really important?
HUNTER MAHAN: Absolutely, yeah. You hit the fairway there, you can be aggressive. That's an accessible pin. I knew if I could just hit the fairway, I would give myself a chance because I only had a wedge or so in. I hit it really close, only hit it about two feet.

Q. Is this a nice preview for 2011 with the Open being here?
HUNTER MAHAN: They're probably going to change the course setup pretty good. I do love playing here. The fans are great. This course is just -- a lot of great history to it. It's just a great golf course. To have 12-under but still have guys able to go low on Sunday, I mean, it's just a sign of a great golf course.

End of FastScripts

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