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An Interview with Toms & Mickelson

September 18, 2004

Q. Talk about your thoughts right now.

DAVID TOMS: We played good today. We had a good day out there. No matter where the ball went, we were going to stay positive, stay loose, go get it and try to make some putts on the greens. And that's what we did.

My partner kept me in play all day. I think if I could have kept it in play a little better, I could have contributed more.

Q. Phil, what does the American team need to do now?

PHIL MICKELSON: Right now, we need to fight out these last two matches. We need Tiger and Davis to hang in there and see if we can get a halve or maybe get a victory in that match. If we can somehow get one more point this afternoon and be in the same situation we were in in 1999, which is the largest deficit ever overcome, I don't know if we want to start a new challenge of coming from five or six behind.

But right now, we're fighting to keep our head above water.

Q. Are you proud of the way you played today?

PHIL MICKELSON: Well, to be honest with you, I'm proud of the way I came back after yesterday. I mean, it was really a tough night for me. It was a tough day. The way I played, I was really down, and I came back out and really got lifted up by my teammates' good play this morning.

I saw their momentum; they were playing well. It got me fired up to get to the range and work things out, and I really started to hit the ball much better.

So I'm looking forward to getting into the singles matches. I just hope that we have a deficit that we can overcome.

Q. Phil, you didn't enjoy the best of days yesterday; what was the difference today?

PHIL MICKELSON: Yesterday was a very tough day for me because we expected -- Tiger and I expected to get us off to a good start, and I felt like we let our team down. We didn't get the momentum we needed.

And it was a tough night. We came out this morning, I got lifted up by my teammates' good play in the morning. They had a chance to get even more points than the 2 1/2 that we got.

I went to the range, started to hit things much better. David played really well. We teamed up well together, and we're excited to get the first point for each of us this match.

Q. You were beaten at The Belfry last time, David; what makes this partnership so special?

DAVID TOMS: I think we complement each other. We really get into it out there playing. Like Phil was saying, let's just try to play this whole day loose and free, and we played great. We made a few putts out there today. We kept the ball in play all day, gave ourselves a lot of chances to have birdie putts and we made them.

Q. Phil, one of the world's best players, but this is your first win in nine matches in Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup. How do you explain that?

PHIL MICKELSON: It's been frustrating. I don't know what to say. I think that what happens is as I was looking at myself on film yesterday I was walking with my head down, I wasn't enjoying it. I wasn't smiling. I was fighting it. I was very tight, very stressed.

And when I play well, I was watching the tape when I played Augusta, I had a smile, I was laughing, I had a great time. That's how I play my best. So we tried to come out today and stay relaxed, stay loose, not steer it so much. I was really steering it yesterday. I missed all my shots left yesterday holding onto it; 18 was a great example.

So I tried to free it up and I hit the ball a lot better.

Q. You needed a fantastic fight back at Brookline. You're going to need another one here. Can you do it?

PHIL MICKELSON: Let's see where we stand after today and then we'll go from there. Obviously, it's going to take something exceptional in singles. And the way the Europeans are playing, it's very unlikely, but we never give up. We won't give up tomorrow. We overcame a huge deficit in '99. We know we can do it. We have done it before, but it will be extremely difficult, but I wouldn't count us out yet.

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