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June 13, 2014

Justin Rose


Q. After Merion last year, does this U.S. Open feel different?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it's very different. Whole setup, the whole golf course, the look of it, the play of it, absolutely. It's very, very different. Scoring is somewhat different too. I think this weather and obviously the USGA probably set it up Thursday not knowing quite how the course was going to play and probably decided to take the conservative approach with it. The rain last night again probably softened it up even more. So 10-under par is unbelievable golf. Take Martin out and there's a great golf tournament going on at this stage, but as we all know there's a long way to go. From that perspective, depending upon what he does, there's a lot of guys in it.

Q. Personally for you, being the defending champion, does that personally feel different for you?
JUSTIN ROSE: No, I feel very focused on the golf tournament. I haven't really paid much attention to being defending champion this week. It's been a nice honor. You hear it on the first tee and you have a little smile, but aside from that you carry on from that. When you play a U.S. Open, I just go about my business quietly, which is fine.

Q. That was a good day, just disappointment on the last hole.
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I played really well. I think I hit every fairway today. So if you do that, you got chances. I just didn't make anything from the 15-, 20-foot range, which is what you need to do. And I was right in between clubs on the last, trying to force a 7-iron in there. It was a shame to finish that way, because I played really well today.

Q. When you look at Martin, do you see any -- I mean, it's impossible to predict, but given his makeup and the form that's in, do you see any possibility that it may come back to the field?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, he's always been strong under pressure. I think he's always won quite a few golf tournaments. And he's had a quiet few years, but at the PLAYERS Championship, that's a golf course that tests your resolve as much as any other and he's obviously came through that with flying colors. For just was a little bit, I've been watching him play and listening to him. He seems very clear and comfortable with what he's doing. So obviously the next two days will really test him and find out how just how comfortable he is, but right now he looks great.

Q. Do you know anything about his mentality and strength of mind from the Ryder Cup team? Do you expect to be sort of passing on the baton as the holder to him with the trophy, so to speak, on Sunday?
JUSTIN ROSE: I haven't thought that far ahead. I think we have all been around the game long enough to not even get that far ahead of ourselves. I still feel like I'm in the tournament, I still feel like I haven't had my round yet where everything's clicked. No matter who you are, how you play, over the course of 72 holes, you're going to have a flat spot or a tough spell or a rough patch. To shoot 65, 65, clearly that hasn't happened and it's possible one of us could shoot 65, 65 on the weekend. So it's by no means over at this stage.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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