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July 20, 2013
MIKE WOODCOCK: Good afternoon. Delighted to be joined
by Hunter Mahan this afternoon. Hunter, that's an excellent
3-under par 68 today, I think that takes you to 1-under and the
clubhouse leader, you must be very pleased.
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah, obviously the course is difficult.
Probably I don't know how many guys are under par right now. Any
score in the red is good. I played really solid today tee to
green. Just two bogeys. But I hit a lot of good quality shots
and the putter was obviously very strong, making a bomb on 2 and a
bunch of key putts coming in. It was a total team effort by my
game today, for sure.
Q. How many greens did you hit?
HUNTER MAHAN: Thirteenish (laughter).
Q. This might be two straight Sunday final groups in Majors,
what are you doing right?
HUNTER MAHAN: I don't know. Probably doing the right
amount of practice, right amount of work, right amount of kind of
rest and mental kind of preparation. Yeah, I think I'm just
not -- I'm just trying to play golf. I'm not trying to add to
anything and make it more than it is, just enjoying kind of the
opportunity of playing in a Major, playing in a British. I
enjoyed it playing at the U.S. Open. I enjoyed playing with Phil.
I didn't think that was a distraction or a hindrance or anything.
You just kind of accept things and appreciate them.
Q. It looked like you really didn't like your shot into the
18th green, so how big was that putt there?
HUNTER MAHAN: Yeah, it was a nice putt. My approach
shot just got away from me, kind of the start line there. That
wind is pretty strong obviously left to right. And I hit it in
the bunker, and didn't hit a very good bunker shot. Like I said,
the putter was pretty strong today. I had a pretty good feel for
it because you're going to have 50, 60-footers out here, whether
you hit good shots or bad. And I had a good touch all day. And
that was important, and I had a good read. It was one of those
putts where I felt like I almost hit it before, like I saw it. I
felt like I had a really good understanding of what it was going
to do. I hit it to the perfect speed and it went right in the
middle, so it was a nice way to end the round.
Q. Having played several at the U.S. Open, is something to
be said to winning a Major, that there needs to be a learning
experience, that you need to build on previous successes?
HUNTER MAHAN: I don't think so. I don't think you need
to. I think you can go out and win a Major without anything,
without any sort of successes. Does it help? I think it does.
Because I think it can be overwhelming at times. Being in the
first or second, last groups there, to have everybody following
you and seeing all the scores and everything, it can be
overwhelming. But there's no rules in this game, you can kind of
do whatever you want.
Q. I know you and Justin are close. His career, it took him
a while to feel like he got to the point where he felt he could
win a Major, have you had that discussion with him at all?
HUNTER MAHAN: No, not really. I definitely think you
kind of have to believe before you can win. You've got to have
that confidence knowing that I can play well and I can win a
Major. You have to believe before it can actually happen, because
you actually have to see it happening.
I think once you start believing and actually trusting
yourself, you can go out and do all kinds of stuff.
Q. After what happened at Keltic Manor in 2010, is there any
sense that this would be redemption in any way? Have you got
unfinished business in the UK? You'd like to come over and do it
HUNTER MAHAN: No, I don't need any redemption or
anything like that, just playing golf. I don't play golf for
revenge or to make up for anything. I'm playing because I really
like to play, and it's the ultimate challenge playing Major golf.
So that's the only thing I'm worried about.
Q. After 54 holes out here, do you have one or two words
that you could use to describe Muirfield?
HUNTER MAHAN: Strenuous and fair.
Q. Do you like it?
HUNTER MAHAN: I do, I like it a lot. I like it a lot.
It's one of the best -- not to -- I hope they don't take it the
wrong way, but it looked very U.S. Openish to me. Just the way it
looked, with all the fairways had definition. Some of the British
Opens, you don't know where to hit it. They put grandstands and
towers out there so you can see where you're going. Here it's
very out in front of you. You can see it. It's a great test.
It's just right out in front of you and it's very fair, there's
nothing tricky about it.
Q. You've put yourself in position to win Majors, what's
kept you from closing the deal?
HUNTER MAHAN: Not being good enough, I guess. Probably
my short game hasn't probably been as strong as it needed to be.
But I'm chipping and putting, I think, great and doing all the
right things. So I feel comfortable with my game and excited
about the opportunity and just have to go out there and trust it
and let it happen.
Q. So you believe you can win one?
HUNTER MAHAN: Yes.
MIKE WOODCOCK: Thanks very much, well played.
HUNTER MAHAN: Thank you.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports