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November 2, 2002

Phil Mickelson


PHIL MICKELSON: 16, I salvaged a stroke there so it made up for not making birdie on 15. It also gave me a little momentum heading into 17 and 18.

Even though I hit very poor shots, it gave me the momentum trying to get up-and-down and I did.

Q. With Vijay at 9-under, how tough is it being four or five shots back going into the final day?

PHIL MICKELSON: That's the last thing I have on my mind. I'm not really worried what Vijay is doing. I have my own things to worry about. I did not strike the ball well today. No matter what the number; I'm very thankful to only be just that far behind. And I've got a lot to work on if I expect to have a shot at it tomorrow.

Q. You talked about getting a lot out of that round. What were some of the moments where, other than 16, where you thought, "I really did keep this round from derailing"?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, I made a 40-footer for par on 8 and that was a nice stroke there.

But I got up-and-down from everywhere. It was not just really good chips, and when I made a poor chip. I made the long putt on 8 and 16. When I didn't hit a good chip - I still had a 4- or 6-footer left that was tough to make and those all went in. I really putted phenomenal and to score 3-under par given as few fairways as I hit and as few greens as I hit, it's amazing.

So I'm very pleased with it, I'll take it, but I've got a lot of work to do if I want to contend tomorrow. For me to have a shot tomorrow I have to drive the ball in play very regularly and have a lot of control over the irons, because when the wind starts blowing, if you don't hit it precise, the misses become very big.

Q. With the up-and-downs that you had and Tiger today birdied 9 from the first fairway, had a left-handed shot on 10, even though you're struggling is it fun playing a course where no matter how bad you hit it off the tee you still have a good shot to make a par or a birdie?

PHIL MICKELSON: I don't agree with that statement. Certainly on the par 5s you can hit one off line and still get up-and-down for birdie but if you want to make birdies here you have got to hit it in the fairway. Most of the greens have trouble or bunkers short of the green making it difficult to get the ball stopped. You have to be in the fairway to get it stopped and every hole that I missed the fairway, I don't even know if I hit a green so it's very difficult to do and very difficult to score under par when you are missing fairways.

Q. You're not dead as far as par is concerned?

PHIL MICKELSON: No, you can make par but you can make par even under the most difficult of conditions.

End of FastScripts....

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