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June 9, 2006

Phil Mickelson


PHIL MICKELSON: I felt like I played well, I'm starting to hit some good shots, and I'm certainly optimistic for the weekend. I feel like my game is starting to come around. I should have a good round today.

Q. If you were at 2 under next week at the U.S. Open, you'd be in pretty good shape.

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, you'd be in great shape, but it is different here, although not much. The scores aren't really that low. It's been very difficult to get the ball close to some of these pins that have been put on shelves, and it's been very difficult to make 15, 20 footers because the greens are so soft, what's been happening is as guys get the ball out of the hole, they're stepping their foot away and it's creating a bit of a crown by the hole. The balls get up to the lip and they fall away, and it's very difficult to get putts to go in.

Q. This is your first time playing with Luke Donald in competition. Your impressions of his game?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, he's a tremendous player and he's done very well against us in the Ryder Cup, so I'm very familiar with his golf game.

Q. In terms of prepping for the U.S. Open, is this kind of what you wanted out of this tournament?

PHIL MICKELSON: Pretty much. What I'm trying to do is play a similar way that I would play at the U.S. Open, not miss balls in spots where you can't get them up and down. I've been trying to leave myself 10, 12, 15, 20 footers and get the putter going. I just haven't made them yet. But it's coming, and hopefully I should have a good round tomorrow.

Q. What's your comfort level playing with DiMarco? You seem to mesh well.

PHIL MICKELSON: Oh, I certainly owe him one from a couple years ago. He's a terrific guy. He's a terrific player, and I enjoy playing a lot with him. We've played on a few Presidents Cups and Ryder Cups now. I enjoy playing with him as my partner, too. We played so well together at the Presidents Cup and then we had such a good record together that I'm pulling awfully hard for him to play well to get on the team because I'd love to partner up with him again.

Q. Do you feel like in terms of the weekend you're getting it together? You're certainly in contention and right there.

PHIL MICKELSON: I hope so. I certainly feel like I played a lot better today than I did yesterday, even though the scores were the same. If I can just get a couple putts to fall, I think tomorrow is going to be a good round.

Q. 18th hole, your drive was in the bunker. How difficult is this course being

PHIL MICKELSON: It's a very challenging test. I think the biggest challenge is on the greens because the greens are so difficult to read putts, so difficult to get the ball close to the hole. It's almost like it's a trampoline where balls hit up by the hole and they get sprung off to the sides and off the edges. Very tough to make birdies here, even though you have a lot of short shots in.

Q. How tough would it be to come back and win this tournament?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, I'm really not that far back. If I can just put together one good round of 6 , 7 under par, I could be right up there on or near the top of the lead.

End of FastScripts.

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