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June 17, 2016

Bubba Watson

Oakmont, Pennsylvania

Q. The green on your last hole than yesterday (inaudible). What was the weather like?
BUBBA WATSON: It's funny, when we got to the 1st hole yesterday, they said it was a foot, foot and a half slower than we were practicing all week, but I didn't see that. It was there. But we still played it like it was treacherous, just like the practice rounds.

And then today I thought I hit a good putt. I three-putted No. 16, thought I hit a good putt. But the green speeds are slower, obviously, because of the weather. Still beautiful conditions, just slower. So you're expecting the fast pace, and I misjudged it wrong. But then it changes the breaks because you had hit it -- I mean, a touch harder, not a lot harder. I'm not saying they're slow, but they're slower.

18, the same thing, when I had that long putt earlier in the week, because it was so fast, it would break even more. So I'm playing it like I know, not -- I'm playing it like I expect it to do, and it didn't do that. But at least I got the last one to fall in on 18 there. So it was nice.

Q. Have they even given you your round 2 tee times?

Q. Tonight?
BUBBA WATSON: Yes. That means -- I've got a few hours to decide, but I have to decide if I'm going to eat dinner before I play or after because they haven't announced it yet, but they're definitely going to tee off early the next day. So my sleep's going to be -- I need 12 hours of sleep. I get cranky. I'm not going to get my 12 hours of sleep tonight.

Q. When was the last time you played twilight golf?
BUBBA WATSON: The British Open, just playing for fun. Never in a tournament, though, no. Not that I'm hoping for a delay for about 30 minutes today that I don't have to come out.

Q. If ever a day tested your patience, yesterday would have been it, and yet you survived it pretty well. Does that give you --
BUBBA WATSON: Well, 1 under, I think is pretty well. I don't know what you would have shot, but I shot pretty good.

No, you know what, it was funny because yesterday with that delay, I know we didn't get to warm up, but there's a lot of times in practice rounds I never see the range until the opening round of the tournament. So for me, that hour delay didn't affect me that we didn't go back out and warm up. So for me, it actually calmed me down.

You get out on the 1st tee, and you want to play well in a major. You know how difficult the course is. Somehow now they said that green speed had slowed down, but it didn't look like it.

So you're anxious. You're so excited. You're pumped up, knowing that you have the ability to perform at these events. So that hour delay gave me time to joke around with the boys and just have fun. So I just got away from the -- my own pressure that I'm putting on myself. So I made a putt coming back off the delay and somehow birdied 9 and 10. So it just freed me up, I guess you would say, that delay.

And then I still got my 12 hours of sleep last night. So I was good these last few holes. I didn't watch any basketball last night. I watched highlights this morning eating breakfast. I was in bed by 8:30. My alarm went off at 5:30, and I'm a good sleeper. So I didn't know there was actually rain last night. I didn't know anything.

Q. How did you feel about being 1 under? You did it by way of five birdies?
BUBBA WATSON: I feel good. I said a couple comments yesterday, but the key around any of these venues, no matter what course it is, you're going to make bogeys. If you don't make a bogey, you're going to make it at some point throughout the week, or multiple bogeys. It's not just because of bad golf. It's because of the difficulty. You're going to get a bounce that goes into the rough. You have to lay up on a par 4 or you're going to hit the green, and it's going to bounce down into the bunker, putted off the green.

So there's many things that are going to cause a bogey. Maybe not you. You may like your technique and everything you did, but bogey happens. So you've got to be prepared for that.

And that's where I told myself, when I bogeyed 3 yesterday, even though I was jittery, I bogeyed 3 yesterday. I said, hey, we've got a par 5 coming up. We've got a wedge on the next hole. We've got all these things happen. I said 5 over won. So I've got four more bogeys I can make coming from 7 because I was only 1 over. I birdied the next two holes, so I went back to 1 under. I was talking to myself saying, hey, it's still difficult. You're going to make bogeys. If this is my only bogey for the week, you're looking pretty good. You give yourself pep talks. Luckily for me, I birdied the next two holes. I don't know if the pep talk did it or if I just got lucky.

Q. (No microphone)?
BUBBA WATSON: It just worked out. We're always jumping around venues. So I've never played -- I don't think we've ever played a U.S. Open twice since I've been playing a U.S. Open. So I just know this course a little bit.

Like I just said in an interview over there, I've been hitting iron off of 1 all week, but then it got -- then it was early in the morning, and I was like, you know what, let's get this started right. So I hit driver and hit the fairway. So I changed my routine up, changed what I was going to do, just to get my mindset different. So it's just something -- I've seen the course before. I know how difficult it is. So trying to stay patient knowing what I know from this course. It's the first time I get to go off past knowledge at a tough venue like this.

Q. The anxiety you describe, is that different in an Open than the other majors?
BUBBA WATSON: Even if I was playing at my club championship at the house, I'm anxious. It's not because it's a major. It's just because you know how tough the course is, and you want to win. No matter what tournament you're playing in.

Daniel Berger last week, when he won, that trophy meant just as much as this trophy. We're all playing for trophies. We're all trying to play for the competitive fire we have. That's why we play golf.

So I'm going to be jittery at Travelers. I'm going to be jittery at Greenbriar. I'm not sure where else I'm playing. I'm going to be jittery at those places. It doesn't matter, it's a major. You want to play and perform at a high level.

Q. Same with Augusta?
BUBBA WATSON: It's the same jitters I just told you. I don't know how to answer any better.

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