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July 31, 2010

Bernhard Langer


Q. Back-to-back Majors like this, different continents, somewhere along the line you must have dug deep because you continued the roll from the British Open.
BERNHARD LANGER: I came in with confidence which is always good. It's the best I think you can have in golf is confidence. But I did feel tired this week and especially the late tee times on my first day was tough.
But, you know, every day you start feeling a little better, you sleep more, get more rest and then it eventually becomes just normal, you get over the jet lag eventually but it takes at least three, four, five days with an 8-hour time change. But I'm not feeling too bad and just fortunate to hit the ball good and my short game has been pretty good so I'm hanging in there tough.

Q. When you hear the gallery and the crowd following Fred and you hear the cheers on the course what goes through your mind?
BERNHARD LANGER: There were some great cheers today, sounded a bit like Augusta on the back nine, honestly. There were lots of big cheers all day long and I didn't know it was all Freddy or if it was Tom Watson or John Cook or could have been anybody.
But I guess Fred made the most noise, John Cook had a run earlier on and I made my own little noise so it was fun, it was a great atmosphere.

Q. How important was it to get even going into tomorrow?
BERNHARD LANGER: Mentally it was big for me because I looked up at the leaderboard on 17 and I saw that he finished 5 and I thought wouldn't it be great to birdie the last hole. And it's a tough hole but I hit three really good shots, hit a perfect drive, a really good 6-iron and a nice putt so topped off my day.

Q. Looked like you swung hard off the tee.
BERNHARD LANGER: I always do that, I'm 5-8, weigh 160 pounds, I can't afford to swing 80%, not with the driver.

Q. (No microphone.)
BERNHARD LANGER: Guessing about seven steps or so, what's that, 20 feet, something like that.

Q. The same on 16? I mean, it's still Saturday, can you talk about that hole?
BERNHARD LANGER: Felt like a birdie or an eagle, because I hit a poor tee shot and got stuck right behind -- wouldn't have been an inch worse one way or the another. If I had been two yards to the left I would have attempted going to the green. If I had been right I would have attempted going around the other side. But I was smack dab behind the tree and I had no shot. You feel stupid when you chip it 10 yards. You're in the fairway and you've got to chip it 10 yards when you have 150 to the hole. But hit a great shot to about three feet and saved par.

Q. How about playing on Sunday with Fred, you guys have never been paired on a Sunday before.
BERNHARD LANGER: We haven't? Doesn't matter whether it's Sunday or Friday or whatever. Freddy is fun to play with, he's pretty relaxed and a great champion, he's won lots of tournaments so we're just going to have a go at each other and whoever makes more putts tomorrow is probably going to end up to win it.

Q. You're in a good stretch here, a chance to win another big one. Can you think of one recently, a better stretch of similar good play you've sustained?
BERNHARD LANGER: I've had some of these stretches in my career. Most people when they win a Major or a big event, even Ryder Cup, when they're involved in that they go into a hole or they are just tired and can't focus.
I've had several times in my career when I won back-to-back, whether it was after my Masters in '85, I won Hilton Head the next week. We won Ryder Cup in America and I flew back to Ireland and won the European Open the next week while everybody else was complaining they were tired and worn out.
I don't know, it's just -- again, I'm reasonably fit and I seem to -- if I have confidence I can play my best game and that's -- when you win you get confidence.

Q. How far back do you think somebody could be tomorrow and give you guys -- make you guys nervous?
BERNHARD LANGER: Tough to say, a lot can happen on this golf course but it's a tough course to go really deep. I don't think there is a 60 out there or a 62. So we have to give back, I think so, for some of the guys that are further back to have a chance. So if we go around par or just 1- or 2-under it's going to be hard for anyone to get there.

Q. Did you expect somebody to come get you today?
BERNHARD LANGER: No, I didn't think about it. It's -- I can't control what somebody else does. I had no preconceptions. I came out to play a good round of golf, which I did, and, you know, it's a great round from Freddy, absolutely, 65 is a fantastic score.
But I played the way I wanted to play and I'm still there with a chance to win tomorrow and that's all I'm concerned about.

Q. Do you think tomorrow might have a Ryder Cup feel? There might be nobody pulling for you tomorrow?
BERNHARD LANGER: That could well be. He's a local boy and he has a lot of following no matter where we play in America, but especially being from here, the background from here. I'm sure there are many, many people rooting for him but I've heard a few Germans out there and I might have my own 12 people cheering for me or whatever, who knows.

Q. Some days does that put less pressure on you than him?
BERNHARD LANGER: Not really, there is plenty of pressure, we both want to win. It means enough to win a U.S. Senior Open, it doesn't matter whether you have 20,000 or 20 cheering for you, you're going to try your best anyways. All right? Thanks, you guys.

End of FastScripts

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