Phil Mickelson showed his best years are still ahead of him by carding an incredible final round of 66 to win The British Open by three shots and claim three of the four major titles.
Lee Westwood led by two shots going into day four of the championship and after a mere five holes he had extended his lead to three shots. It all looked positive for Westwood, aiming to win his first major title on his 62nd attempt. However the following 13 holes were rather forgettable for the Nottinghamshire man and he inevitably lost out finishing T3 with Aussie Adam Scott and fellow home favorite Ian Poulter. How Westwood is yet to win a major remains a mystery to everyone involved with golf and as a personal favorite of mine it was pure agony watching him lose it on the final day. He has the ability but it seems the golfing gods do not look down on Westwood and you start to wonder if they ever will.
Mickelson, the American, came roaring through the back 9 carding four birdies from the last 6 holes, which is form that simply cannot be matched on most days never mind the final day of an Open when the pressure is on. Mickelson on his day is something that any golf fan can truly watch and admire.
The Californian has had a very pleasing stay up in Scotland over the past few weeks. Earlier in July he won the Scottish Open beating South Africa’s Brendan Grace in a sudden death play-off. He only had to wait a week after lifting the Scottish Open title to be lifting yet more silverware in the form of the Open Championship trophy. The win may seem quite surprising considering after day one of the championships Mickelson stated that he thought the course was ‘unplayable’.
Impressive statistics show that Mickelson has now won three of the four majors and five majors overall:
Masters Tournament: 2004, 2006, 2010
The Open Championship/British Open: 2013
PGA Championship: 2005
But there is one left. The one that most likely eats away at him. The one that doesn’t truly allow him to enjoy his success as much as he would like too. The US Open. An incredible tale for any golf fan filled with such heartache. Even those who dislike Mickelson still keep their fingers crossed for him every time the US Open rolls round mid April and I am one of those people. His best finish to date is tied second and to anybody reading that you can sympathize but you may think well that’s not too bad I’m sure he can do one better next time. But here is where the absolute heartache for Mickelson comes in.
US Open: 2nd/T2 – 1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2013.
Six times that Mr America has failed to win the US Open in his own backyard and the most saddening part of it all is how spaced out the agonizing second place finishes have been. Ever since that second place in 1999 he must have been thinking that it was only a matter of time and then consistently every few years he has yet again finished second. For the sake of Mickelson’s sanity and the sanity of all the Americans who follow him so passionately let’s hope that next April Philip Alfred Mickelson will be able to say he is only the 6th man ever to win Golf’s Grand Slam.