PGA Championship

Mickelson can erase Open heartache

2016-07-28 10:38
Phil Mickelson (Getty Images)
Cape Town - Phil Mickelson is ready to put his missed opportunity at The Open behind him as he prepares to tee off in the PGA Championship at Baltusrol.

Despite a flawless 65 in the final round at Troon, the American couldn't prevent a rampant Henrik Stenson from claiming his first major victory.

Mickelson's 72-hole total would have been good enough to win or force a play-off in 141 of the 145 Open Championships staged to date, but it wasn't up to scratch on this occasion.

As a result of the Olympics, a compressed schedule sees the PGA Championship staged just two weeks after The Open, and that could count in Mickelson's favour, as he looks to ride the wave of his newfound form.

Mickelson also won the PGA Championship the last time it was staged at Baltusrol in 2005, and so has plenty of good memories to feed off of.

"That was really a fun week," Mickelson said. "That was something I cherish.

"I've gone back there a number of times, they were nice enough to give me a membership and the head pro there Doug Steffen and I became very good friends and we go back and relive that final round and those moments. It was a Monday finish, which was rare, but certainly special."

The highlight of that PGA victory back in 2005 was his up-and-down for birdie from short of the green on the 72nd hole that sealed the deal.

It was a superb flop shot that set up the birdie, but for a player boasting one of the most impressive short game in the business, it was nothing special.

"It really wasn't that hard of a shot because the lie was okay and there was a bit of a hollow so the shorter I hit it the ball was going to chase and the further I hit it the ball was going to slow down," Mickelson added.

"I felt like I had a pretty good margin of error and hit it to about three feet. It was a good feeling.

"That was an important one because I always felt like once I won one major I was going to win multiple times. I needed to get that second one and got it fairly soon, a year and a half later."

Mickelson has been paired with defending champion Jason Day and two-time winner Rory McIlroy for the first two rounds.

Read more on:    pga championship  |  phil mickelson  |  golf


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