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June 25, 2020

Phil Mickelson

Cromwell, Connecticut

Q. Phil, can you talk a little bit about just the round in general? I know you were ticked off about 6, what happened on that chip there, but you didn't really let that derail you.
PHIL MICKELSON: So I've played playing really some good golf and smart golf, and I played really well today, and then I got to the 6th hole where I didn't hit a great drive but got it right in front of the green, and the pin was in a very difficult spot, all the way in the back of the green, where a yard past the hole started to go away. So I knew you have to leave it short of the hole because it will continue to drift well by, just like my chip did, and I was disappointed in myself for not leaving it shorter and underneath the hole and giving myself a much better birdie look on a par-5 you really want to birdie.

But I don't want to discount a lot of the other good shots that I hit, a lot of the other smart plays that I made and good putts that I made, so it was still a good round, it was just that one shot.

Q. This is the first one back since 50, and I know that's just a number, but how motivated are you to keep continue achieving after that milestone, so to speak?
PHIL MICKELSON: So I love what I do. I love my job. I love trying to play and compete, and I really enjoy playing with guys like Rory and Bryson who are just tremendous talents and trying to compete with those guys. Rory has got one of the most beautiful golf swings this game has ever seen, and Bryson has got a unique style of playing that is fascinating, and he plays at the highest level. I enjoy kind of watching and learning, but I also enjoy trying to play my game and compete regardless of age.

Q. You obviously saw the USGA modification there with the qualification criteria, top 70 right now, so at this point you're in. I know you've said before you didn't want any freebie passes. Can you talk just about your reaction to that and the importance of the rest of this week?
PHIL MICKELSON: No, that worked out great, to be able to know that I have a chance to go back to Winged Foot and give it another shot. But I've had 30 U.S. Opens. I've had plenty of opportunities, and so if I don't qualify, I want somebody else who deserves a spot, too, to play. As long as I'm playing well enough to compete to earn my way into the field, then I want to play and keep trying to win that tournament.

Q. With the fact that it's Winged Foot, just ratchets up -- obviously you played extremely well there right until the end. Where does that kind of ratchet up your motivation level, potentially having another crack at that?
PHIL MICKELSON: Yes. You can't win if you don't play, so you've got to be in the tournament to have a chance to win. I'm also realistic, a U.S. Open is going to be more difficult for me now than it probably was because I drive it the way I drive it, and so that week in 2006 my short game was the best it's been in my career, and I got up-and-down from everywhere. I know that I'll have to do the same and hopefully drive it better.

Q. (Inaudible.)
PHIL MICKELSON: Yeah, it's a unique feeling to be playing, but I feel like the TOUR has done an amazing job of playing golf in a safe environment, given how many people are out here playing, competing and staying safe. It's fun that we're able to still play and compete, and I'm appreciative of Travelers to still be committed to this tournament and this area, even though we don't have a lot of people out here. It's pretty cool to have golf being played.

Q. (Inaudible.)
PHIL MICKELSON: No, I think, again, when you have 400 people out here, between players, caddies, instructors, whoever else, to only have two or four people and then I hear a couple of them are false positives or they tested negative since or what have you, I think that's remarkable, the math on that.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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