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February 22, 2006

Phil Mickelson


Q. How much more do you need to have to win it going out?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, I would certainly love to win the last tournament this year at La Costa. I'm sorry to see this tournament leave. Obviously I love playing here in San Diego, and the fact that it's eight, ten minutes from my house is even better. I'm sorry we're not going to be playing here more, but it's such a great place, and I'd love to be the last one to win it.

Q. (Inaudible).

PHIL MICKELSON: It felt like it. I had a tough draw. Charles is an extremely solid player. I was fortunate to get off to a good start, but he came back with some birdies, and I was just barely able to hold him off in the end.

It looked like on 15 he was really going to turn the match around with that iron shot he hit. I needed to make that five footer, and when I didn't, it looked like the momentum was going his way. So I was lucky to hold him off the last three.

Q. How tricky is 18 out here, playing match play 18 holes?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, it is, and certainly there's just not that much difference between the top seeds and the last seeds, and when you talk about the top 65 guys in the world, 64 of the best players, there's really not that much difference. Over 18 holes it's hard to see a difference. You get a hot player, and boy, you look at what David Toms did last year, you run into somebody like that in fact, I actually ran into him last year and got trounced. It's not any fun. You need a little bit of luck. There was a shot or two that I was fortunate enough to hole, that I was fortunate enough to get.

Q. What did you do on your week off?

PHIL MICKELSON: I spent a lot of time on short game, trying to get chipping, putting, iron play a little more solid. I hit a lot of good iron shots today. I know I didn't hit as many fairways as I wanted, and I kind of experimented a little bit today, pulled out that 47 inch driver. I thought with the fairways being a little wider here, it might be a good place to try it out. Not such a great idea. I just about had it it backfired on me almost, and I was fortunate enough to hold him off. I'll go back to my regular length driver and try to hit some more fairways.

Q. The regular length is how long?


Q. What does 47 feel like? You guys are so sensitive to feel. How much different is that?

PHIL MICKELSON: It's just a little bit different. I just thought this was a good spot to give it a try, hit some good drives, but a couple didn't work so great. It was just an experiment, and I was fortunate enough that it didn't back fire on me.

Q. Have you felt good about what you worked on relative to what you've been unhappy with say in the first few weeks?

PHIL MICKELSON: I felt my iron play was a lot better. I felt like I hit a lot of good iron shots today in some winds and had some good trajectory control. I was able to make it a lot easier on me.

Q. Do you feel as good coming into this week as you have in other match play weeks?

PHIL MICKELSON: For the most part. But when you go into match play, you're going to have to have some help on some of your matches. You're going to play well a few of those rounds and win some matches, but there are some where you're going to need to be given a few holes, too, so you just never know.

Q. You talked about earlier there were a couple lucky holes. Was there one in particular you felt fortunate on?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, he drove it in the water on 14 and gave me the hole, and when I was 2 up there, I was in a position to put the match away. And I hit a great iron shot into 15 to five feet, looks like I'm going to make birdie, go dormie with three holes to go. Not so fast. He knocks it in there two feet, three feet, I missed and he made it, and it looked like he had the momentum, so I was lucky to hold him off the last three.

End of FastScripts.

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