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August 12, 2016

Bubba Watson

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

Q. Can you talk about the events you've been to?
BUBBA WATSON: We went to fencing first. It was Russia against Estonia women's for bronze medal. We didn't know. We just had tickets and we went and that's what was happening. And fencing was unbelievable.
You know, I always talked about learning how to fence, and so going to it was special. I mean, it was amazing watching these girls‑‑ I'm going to say girls, I'm going to say I'm older than them. These girls, the athleticism to move around it, was just amazing. And they were screaming and hollering and I guess I would, too, if I won a bronze. It was amazing.
And then field hockey, meeting the U.S. a team at dinner one night, ran into them and just started talking to them. They asked if I would want to come to the field hockey game, and I said yeah. So some of the parents saved me and my manager and my caddie this week three seats, so we sat right there amongst them and listened to the cheers. And they were explaining everything about field hockey, and they were amazing, they won last night, too, 3‑0. It was a privilege and honour to meet those girls. Just like any athlete, you ask questions and you learn from them. At dinner, we are asking how they train and what they do and how they prepare and what strategies they take in their event.
That's what I'm taking in this week is just how amazing this is to be able to see sports that we've never seen, and golf just gets to tag along and say we're athletes now. You know, the sad part is that for me, I want to go watch all the other sports. I was telling them, I got in the elevator today with a girl about to compete on the trampoline. She competed at 2.00 and I teed off at 11:09. I said, "I'm sorry, I won't be able to make your trampoline event there."
What a thrill just to talk to some of these athletes and be a part of this. That was a long answer.

Q. Marcus Fraser in at 10‑under; is he catchable?
BUBBA WATSON: Well, everybody's catchable. That doesn't mean he will be caught, because you just never know, right. It's golf. It's an event. Everybody, no matter what the sport is. But obviously he's playing nicely. You can get on a good stretch around here.
Obviously you catch the wind at the right times, a few things like that, make a few putts, pumps you up. Obviously he's playing very nicely. But as we know golf, he's catchable but at the same time, he's playing so good, he could easily just dominate everybody.

Q. You've led a lot of tournaments at this stage. What do you think will be going through his head at the moment coming into the halfway mark?
BUBBA WATSON: Well, if he's me, he's going to have a lot of thoughts going through his head. He's a veteran of the game, so he's just going to go do his thing, hang out with team and his people he's traveling with. Or if he's staying in the village, he'll hang out with the whole team with other sports. It's going to take his mind off of it.
Even with all the stuff going on this week, even if you're sitting in your room watching the other events on TV, you're so focused on what an unbelievable experience this, you're not going to focus on golf that much off the course. When you come back tomorrow, you'll start thinking about it. But when you're at your house or around eating in the cafeteria, there's definitely no thoughts going through my head.

Q. Is that a great thing about the Olympics?
BUBBA WATSON: It's absolutely amazing. What a privilege and honour that golf is in the Olympics and to be a part of this. Right or wrong, you know, it's hard for me to focus on golf because of the fact that it's just a dream of a lifetime to be associated with these great athletes.

Q. What are your impressions about the golf course, about Gil Hanse' job?
BUBBA WATSON: It's unbelievable. He's done an amazing job; the shape this golf course is in, with the greenskeeper, is perfect. You couldn't ask for better, and the layout is beautiful. He made it difficult in some areas and easy in some areas‑‑ well, not easy, but he made it easier in some areas. He did a great job. Like I said yesterday, Brazil should be very happy of the golf course they have here and for everybody in the local area, it would be a privilege to play this golf course.

Q. I don't want to be a Debbie Downer here, but can you talk about the round?
BUBBA WATSON: I birdied the last three. I guess it's a pick‑me‑up. I did what you would do. You would finish strong like that.

Q. Yeah, from the back tee.
BUBBA WATSON: You know, there is some up tees.

Q. A lot of times when I play with people, they let me in, but some people won't. Bottom line, how does that prepare you for tomorrow?
BUBBA WATSON: Well, I don't know how it gets me to go into tomorrow. Like I said, one bad swing yesterday, two 3‑putts.
Today, if I look quickly at it, it would be‑‑ we had the long wait on 12. But I hit a great shot. I like the 6‑iron. I liked everything about it. It was probably‑‑ golf is such a fine line, especially with humps and bumps on the course. If you look where my ball hit, it just bounced towards the dirt and sand under the tree, and if it would have just been a foot the other way, been on the green 20 feet, 30 feet and hopefully I could 2‑putt that and make par. So the momentum slowed on that, kicked this way or kicked that way. We could go through the whole round.

Q. On 15, you were barely out of the fairway on the right.
BUBBA WATSON: So same thing. We hit a club we thought was perfect. Three holes before, I hit the 7‑iron, so this time we hit the 7‑iron and it went over the green on 13. So two holes back‑to‑back, I didn't feel like I hit a bad shot, but I made two bogeys.
So in the paper, it's going to look like Bubba made two bogeys, he struggled those holes. But when I look back truly at my swings and my thought process, I didn't hit bad shots. They were just misjudged, I guess you would say.

Q. With 36 holes to go, the American contingent is struggling to find a way to get on the podium. What are your thoughts on that?
BUBBA WATSON: You know, it's golf. We try to always put labels on people, who is going to win this week, who is going to win the majors. This is no different than a major. This is a big event. This is a big deal for the game of golf, and you know how golf is. Tomorrow everybody could shoot really low and be up there, and then shoot bad the next day and then we miss.
It's one of those things where you've just got to play golf, and right now, we're so focused on the top three. But if this was a regular tournament and I finished top five, we would be elated about that in this big event. Because there's only three people getting a medal, that's what we're looking at right now.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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