Four-time major champion, Phil Mickelson is in Scotland this week getting his game in order for next week’s Open Championship. Mickelson fired a -6 under par 66 in the first round of the Asset Management Scottish Open on Thursday, and finished two strokes off the lead set by Scot, John Parry. Lefty cited his appearance at Castle Stuart as needing work on his links golf .
Mickelson has three Green Jackets and a Wanamaker Trophy, but has yet to win either a US Open, or Open Championship in his career. His old grip it and rip it attitude needed an adjustment, and based on his performance at the US Open this year, I think he is making some progress, and could be a legitimate contender at Muirfield next week.
Had he not made a mistake in judgement at the 10th hole, and an outright bogey on 17, Phil had a chance at a share of the lead. He made some things happen on Thursday, but the highlight of his day was an eagle three at the 12th hole. He admitted in his post round interview that he left a couple of birdies out there, but all-in-all was happy with his first round at Castle Stuart Golf Links.
This is the first year that I can remember that Phil has taken time off, and looks to be rested ahead of this years Open, and looks ready to play. He missed the cut at last weeks Greenbrier Classic, but he has never made a cut at The Old White TPC so I wouldn’t put too much stock in that being an indicator of what to expect from him at the Open.
The 43 year-old Mickelson, who has been on the PGA Tour since 1992, only has two top ten finishes in the Open. His best, was a second place in 2011, and third in 2004. He has traditionally struggled in Europe, and has missed three cuts but has finishes in the 30′s and 40′s quite a few times. He seems to have recognized that he needs to work on that style of golf, and is taking the steps that will help him be competitive.
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