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August 11, 2011

Shaun Micheel


SHAUN MICHEEL: I played nine holes Tuesday and nine holes yesterday. The golf course, it's in front of you. There's really not a whole lot that you really have to grind over. You can look at your yardage book and pretty much tell where you need to hit it. And fortunately, I did that today. I hit a lot of great shots. I was very solid off the tee. I missed a couple of fairways but I missed a couple just by a foot or so.
Left myself under the hole and of course I made a few birdies early. And I think that's -- obviously getting off to a good start, whether you start on the front or the back, is really where you need to get your birdies. Because we all know that the last four or five holes on the back side, there's kind of trouble waiting on every one of them.

Q. What is it about you and the PGA?
SHAUN MICHEEL: You know, I don't know. I guess since I won, I take a lot of pride I think in the trophy and coming in on Tuesday night to the champion's dinner and really representing the men and women that are out there each and every week.
You know, it's been a very difficult year but for some reason, I seem to find a way to just kind of dig deep no matter how I'm playing, really, kind of leading into the tournament.
I mean, you've got to hit solid shots. You have to think well and you have to hit the ball well and you need to make a few putts. You need a few breaks here and there, too. Today I didn't need the breaks because I was pretty much down the fairway or just off the edge.
I love major championship golf. It's exciting to see the fans come out and rooting you on. You know, it's just exciting to play in front of people, and I love the difficult courses. But I think more than anything else, it's just, you know, it's the last major championship of 2011 and I really feel like I can win this.

Q. You've had a difficult season, can you chronicle some of your health issues that you've experienced?
SHAUN MICHEEL: Where do I start? I don't know, it's been a very difficult year. I lost my mom in October, and I said last year that I felt like I had someone to play for. I think the years -- all of the other years that I was playing on Tour, I was just kind of playing for myself, and last year I really dedicated my year to her.
And I ran out of energy after she passed away on October 21, my year was just about over. I started this year with -- I just didn't know who I wanted to play for and I was tired of playing for myself. And I didn't have -- I didn't have her kind of pushing me along.
So I think maybe just a little bit of a poor attitude and you know there are some health issues. I had some ear surgery in May and just for two months there, I just kind of walked around in a fog and spent some time in a neurologist's office. You know, hey, we all play through certain things. It's been a tough year.
But trying to have a good attitude, and I just haven't played well, and you know, so I'm really excited to be here, though, I really am. You know, I've seen some things coming the last few weeks. Changed a little bit of my routine, some of my swing thoughts I guess, and you know, coming along.
So I could stand here all night and bore you with all the details but it's just been a rough year both physically and mentally.

Q. How much does a round like this on a big stage, how much does that give you a lift?
SHAUN MICHEEL: I hit the ball well yesterday in the practice round and the same on Tuesday. Really, again, I love the challenge of these difficult courses. I feel like -- and I don't think it's really because I won eight years ago. I think I've just always liked difficult courses, because I don't give up. I'll be out there and then I can accept a bogey, and sometimes you can accept a double.
But I just really enjoy the championship. I mean, again, I said this a minute ago; that I really love the fans that come out and support I think it really kind of pushes you along. I don't know, just for some reason, I seem to always kind of find my game. I wish we could play 30 weeks a year like this. I might do a little bit better. But you know, it was a treat today. It was enjoyable, and hopefully I can kind of continue on thinking well and keep the ball out there in play.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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