Sunday, July 21, 2013

Phil Phil Phil!

I don't blog often about golf, maybe in great part because I only play often enough (rarely) to maintain my status as near awful; but I do watch it some and pretty much always take in the majors plus the Players Championship.
I've always been a Phil Mickelson fan because the guy is all class, always has his priorities in order, plays left handed like I do and is never, ever a boring watch in a major.  Us Phil fans have long suffered -- initially waiting for him to finally win any major (he now has four -- three Masters and a PGA) and then watching him come in 2nd an unbelievable six times at the US Open, most recently this year and quite often being his own worst enemy.  We've never suffered much watching Lefty play at The Open (the British) because he has rarely played well there -- I want to say 1 top 5 and 2 top 10s.  As I am writing this he is sitting in the clubhouse with a three-shot lead without anyone having a chance to take it away from him.  Whodathunkit?!
He started the day two over par, five behind leader Lee Westwood but only three behind 2nd and 3rd place players.  Phil went out and mostly collected pars (yes, the same Phil) while everyone else stayed a little ahead of him and some fell away like Tiger.  Phil does pick up a birdie in a couple places, has one bogey and with four holes to play is within one shot, I think, with a score of par for the tourney; but then he proceeds to birdie three of the last four holes, while Westwood and Scott and anyone else with a chance faded back.  So when it looked like Phil could get into a playoff when he had a couple holes left to play, he ends up sitting in the clubhouse with a comfortable lead watching the last four or five pairs gain no ground.
So Phil is going to now own three of the four majors and, as he said, if six seconds (second place finishes) counted as a win, he'd own all four.  It should be remembered that he won this tourney when all of the real contenders going into the final round were all legitimate contenders -- at least four guys who'd won majors and a half dozen of the very best in the sport who'd never quite won one, like Westwood, Poulter, Garcia, Stenson and Mahan.  If Phil hadn't won, which I wasn't expecting, I was going to be content with just about any of these other guys winning it; but congrats to someone who deserves it more than anyone.
It should also be mentioned that the young Japanese amateur, Hideki Matsuyama, has finished in the top 10 in the last two majors.  Wow.

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