Cape Town - Phil Mickelson said that playing the FedEx St Jude Classic
is perfect preparation for his career Grand Slam bid at next week’s US Open at
Mickelson, a six-time runner up at the US Open, still needs
to win a win to complete his career Grand Slam.
But rather than take a break ahead of the year’s second
major, Mickelson will join the likes of reigning US Open champion Brooks Koepka
and Daniel Berger, who is looking for a third straight victory at Memphis’ TPC
"I feel the best way for me to prepare for the US Open
is to get in contention and get sharp mentally and with my game,"
Mickelson said. "That's what playing here in Memphis does.
"This is a course where precision is the key factor. It
doesn't beat you up with length, you've got to be precise with every shot and
that's where it really benefits my play next week in the Open.
"Some people feel like if they win they've expended too
much energy and they don't carry it over. But for me I've actually won two of
my five majors (after) winning the week before and I think it would be momentum
I would carry over into the Open, and that's why I would love to play well and
hopefully come out on top."
One of Mickelson’s runners up finishes came in 2004, the
last time the US Open was held at Shinnecock, when the 47-year old was one of
just two players to finish under par.
The course has undergone extensive renovation work since
then, but Mickelson said it was still one of the best and toughest courses
"It is the best set-up I've seen for a US Open as long
as I've played," Mickelson added. "I think it's the fairest test
where skill is going to be the biggest factor. I think you're going to see an
"I spent the last few days there and some time there a
week ago and I feel like all areas of your game are going to be tested and
skill is going to be a huge factor, especially chipping and putting around the
"It's very challenging but very fair. It's not
hack-it-out rough, it's fairway height but the greens are so difficult it's
hard to get the ball close. I love the challenge."