John Senden Friday Second Round (Flash)

Friday, June 14, 2013

Q.  Not a lot of red numbers out there.  Will you take that 71?

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah, I'll take it.  I've been playing well, so I just need to stay patient on a golf course like this.  Anything around par is a good score out there.  And any score of par on each hole is a good score, so you've got to respect that.

Q.  A lot of golf played today.  Just talk about the course, how things progressed with you during the day?

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah, we started pretty early.  It was a quick turnaround last night.  We had to gather our thoughts pretty early this morning.  Everyone was getting up probably between 4:15 and 4:30 to get out here.

But the golf course, with the rain overnight, it was difficult to get some feel on the range because of all the moisture.  And then getting shuttles out to our position, had to be patient with that.  And then playing a lot of holes.  I think we played nine holes this morning or eight and then another 18.  So it's been a long day.

Q.  With the way things are going, do you think that the winner is going to be under par?

JOHN SENDEN:  I don't know.  I think if it stays dry, maybe not.  But I think the golf course is still soft enough for someone to ‑‑ just to hang around and stay in the red today and we'll see what happens on the weekend.

Q.  Amidst all the difficult holes out here, 13 seems to be a breather.  Can you talk about just the exception of how you get to that tee and it's pretty easy?

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah, I don't know.  I think that golf hole has been into the breeze today and you have to respect it.  It's only a wedge shot, but you don't want to be missing that green, either.  You've got a short club in your hand.  But the pin is off the back.  If you're coming from the middle of the green putting up to the hole, it's a good chance of a birdie.  But anything from the sides, you're very much putting with a little bit of defense.

Q.  With the final hole of that stretch of 7 through 13, do you feel (inaudible.)

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah, I mean, it's a gettable hole.  You have to treat that hole as one that you can get, especially when you step on the next hole.  And I think that all the golf holes are playing difficult today, it's just a matter of where you're putting your ball in place on the fairways and the greens.

Q.  15 has more other scores than any other hole.  Some players have said they don't even aim for the fairway because of the sight lines or the chance of it going through and out of bounds.  How do you approach that hole and do you understand why there are seven at this point, other scores, worse than double bogeys?

JOHN SENDEN:  I think the green is more difficult than anything else.  I think the tee shot, if you land it back a little bit, I think you can still reach ‑‑ it opens the hole up a little bit more.  I think the more you get aggressive with it, because of the into the breeze, you have to take driver or 3‑wood today.

Yesterday it was playing down, so you could pretty much nurse like a long iron down there or a 3‑wood and still have a short iron in there.

Today I think the golf hole is playing much more difficult today.

Q.  Would you say this is the toughest shortest course you've ever played?

JOHN SENDEN:  Probably, yeah, I think so.  I think it's a good mix of holes, a good test of golf.  The conditions, soft at the moment, is a blessing for the players, I think.  I'd hate to be here and it hadn't rained at all, it would be tough.

Q.  You have an eclectic mix of USGA setups.  Phil said yesterday he played a bunch of them.  He told Mike Davis yesterday he thought this was his favorite U.S. Open setup?

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah, it is.  It's got good history.  It's got a good mix of holes, good undulation towards the slope of the land compared to any other ones that I've played.

Olympic had that a bit last year, too, so that was interesting.  And I'm excited to play U.S. Opens because they really choose interesting and difficult golf courses, which is perfect for this type of format.

Q.  Is there something about your game and the way the USGA asks of you as a player that sort of suits you?

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah, it demands good ball‑striking, I think, and good putting.  I think I like hitting the long irons well.  There's a lot of long irons off the tee and a lot of long irons into the greens.  So if I play my game and hit them well, hopefully I'll do well.

And the same thing last year at Olympic, it was very ‑‑ it probably didn't measure that long, but it was a lot of long second shots, and the par‑3s are long there.  The same sort of deal.  I think it was about No. 15 last year at Olympic was a short hole there, which is similar to here.  I think the golf course is similar.

Q.  All of the difficult elements out here, the scores coming in aren't as good as we expected.  What do you think is the main reason for why we're not seeing under par scores?

JOHN SENDEN:  I think it's because of the difficulty when you miss.  The rough is so long here compared to any other event I've played, any other U.S. Open.

There was nowhere near the height of rough at Olympic.  I played Shinnecock.  I played Pebble, and one other one, Congressional, and I think that it's just, you know, it's just demanding.  There's a lot of slope, a lot of tilt on the greens.  And if you hit good golf shots, you get rewarded because of the softness.  But if you miss, you really are scrambling.  I think that's where it's at.  It demands all parts of the game being great.

Q.  Is the course drying up at all with the sunshine?

JOHN SENDEN:  Yeah.

Q.  It was wet early this morning?

JOHN SENDEN:  It's drying.  The actual fairways have been dry.  They're soft but they're dry enough not to gather any water or any mud on the balls.  I haven't seen one mud ball this week, which is great.  I'm sure that the players can agree to that.  And I think that with the sunshine and a bit of breeze I think it's really going to be extremely exciting weekend.

Q.  (Inaudible.)

JOHN SENDEN:  Probably, yeah.

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