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July 8, 2016

Phil Mickelson

Inverness, Scotland

Q. 6-over par through six holes of your second round, and potentially missing the cut, how proud of the way you battled back?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yes, it was a good way to turn it around. I didn't get off to a very good start. I needed to get off to a good start after yesterday. Not birdieing 10 and 12 hurt because those are the easy holes downwind. And then to bogey 11 and 13 there, that wasn't a very good start.

But I got lucky on 16 where I hit a good one shot and made eagle. That got me back to even par for the round and I played a good front nine.

Q. You struggled on the greens yesterday. How much better was it today?
PHIL MICKELSON: It was better. This was probably the longest putt I made on 2, 25 feet, back up the hill to get in. I've been leaving every putt short here. I've had a hard time getting the ball to the hole.

Q. It is a big adjustment for you guys coming over from America; greens regularly 14 on the Stimpmeter and suddenly these are 10 1/2. It's a difficult thing to do, isn't it?
PHIL MICKELSON: It is, but you've got to make the adjustment. That's why you come here early to make that adjustment. That's why you spend time on the greens. I just haven't trusted it on the golf course. I keep fearing knocking it five, six feet by, and I keep coming up short and that's why I'm working on it.

Q. The tee shot at the eighth; a little bit of good fortune here, I think?
PHIL MICKELSON: 8, I missed about four yards of where I wanted to. I'm trying to get on the right edge of the green just in the rough where it will kick down. I missed it by about four yards and I got a good bounce. It was fairly thin over there and it was a terrific bounce and ended up knocking that one in.

Q. As we speak you're eight shots off the lead and much can happen in links golf; your thoughts on the position in the tournament now?
PHIL MICKELSON: That's the forecast for tomorrow. The morning is supposed to be fairly calm and maybe a small chance of rain. The afternoon is supposed to pick up and get rainy, as well.

If I go out and shoot a score of 6-, 7-under par, which is out there when the conditions are benign, you never know what might happen to the later groups and that might be enough to get back in it Sunday.

Q. 76 yesterday, a 69 today. What was the biggest difference besides seven shots?
PHIL MICKELSON: Certainly the conditions were a bit softer today and yesterday, so the scores were a bit lower. I didn't get off to a very good start today, and that was disappointing because I needed to after my round yesterday. Instead of being 1- or 2-under through the first four holes where there were some birdie holes, I was 2-over.

But I was able to fight back and get it back to 1-over par, and tomorrow being in the forecast, it's supposed to be pretty nice in the morning and get a little tough in the afternoon. You never know, if I get a hot round, may have a chance on Sunday.

Q. Part of the fight-back was the eagle on 16 after the early bogeys. How crucial was that to steady your round?
PHIL MICKELSON: It was crucial that I at least birdie that hole because I had not made a birdie and I was 2-over. I drove kind of a good 2-iron and ran it down there, chased it up there and ended up three or four feet from the hole.

That was certainly good fortune obviously with as many bounces as it took, but you need some good breaks and I knocked that one in for eagle, got the round back to even round and played a good front nine.

Q. Is the key tomorrow to have a game plan or adjust to whatever the golf course gives you tomorrow?
PHIL MICKELSON: Well, you have to be able to adjust but it's supposed to be a little bit softer tomorrow, and if that's the case -- there's some low scores out there. We're seeing under par scores, scores in the 60s with challenging conditions. If it's somewhat soft, I think there's going to be a hot round out there and I'm hoping to grab it.

Q. That seemed a lot more enjoyable today than it was yesterday.
PHIL MICKELSON: I mean, I enjoyed both rounds. I enjoy the challenge of both rounds but today was a much better round score-wise. Again I got off to a poor start and that put me really in a tough spot. It didn't look good to even make the cut but I was able to turn it around and play some good golf and play 5-under from there on out.

You never know what might happen. I'm glad I have a chance tomorrow on the weekend because it's supposed to be somewhat soft in the morning and maybe I can get another hot round.

Q. Danny Lee has had an excellent round today; are you still optimistic that you're still in with a chance of winning this competition?
PHIL MICKELSON: Certainly you need some breaks and you need some weather breaks. But because I'll be going off so many hours before the leaders, if the conditions are soft and I can go shoot a hot round and then have the conditions pick up, the guys that just make the cut, everybody has a chance, if they can shoot 7-, 8-under par tomorrow.

Q. What was the club you hit on 16?
PHIL MICKELSON: 2-iron, just hit a low, hard 2-iron and let it chase down there. It had gone over the green yesterday but wasn't as much help today so I thought I could go ahead and hit it.

Q. In the bag this week and you'll use it next week?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, I don't use it really anywhere else other than here. I feel like it just goes too low.

Q. Just asked Thomas Björn about shooting 63 at Baltusrol in 2005 and he couldn't remember any of it. Presumably your memory is better of winning. Could you give us some highlights?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, that was really a fun week. That was something I cherish. I've gone back there a number of times. They were nice enough to give me a membership. And I go back and the head pro, Doug Steffen, and I have become very good friends and we go back and relive that final round and those moments. It was a Monday finish, which was rare, but certainly special.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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