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Phil Mickelson wins first Open Championship

Phil Mickelson had one of the best days of his golfing career in the final day of the Open Championships as he came from 5 strokes down to claim his fifth major. Impressively, the American won by three strokes ahead of Henrik Stenson whilst the two Englishman, Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood finished 4 shots behind jointly together alongside Australian Adam Scott. This victory has given Phil Mickelson his fifth overall major win, but his only third different major victory as he has won the Masters, the PGA Championship and now the Open, yet never the US Open.

Mickelson impressively finished 4 of the last 6 holes with birdies and ended what was a wonderful day for the 43 year old in joyful tears. Phil Mickelson would have been distraught last month when he finished as a runner-up for the US Open for a sixth time, but then things look bright when he won the Scottish Open last year. It was the perfect way to warm up for the Open Championship, to win a tournament in the United Kingdom, and looked to be on fine form as he stormed his way to a win taking the Open title from defending Champions, Ernie Els’ hands.

Phil Mickelson wins the Open for the first time in his career

Phil Mickelson’s most successful major is the Masters Tournament which he has won on three different occasions in 2004, 2006 and 2010. He won the PGA Championships in 2005 and has now won the Open. However, he’s next target will be to win the US Open, which has been his bogey tournament finishing second in 1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009 and 2013. Mickelson is now the third consecutive over 40 year old to win the Open after Darren Clarke and Ernie Els were the previous two winners.

Lee Westwood would have been desperate to win this major as he has tried 62 times to win a major, but never has been able to. Going into the final day, Westwood was in the lead by two shots, but he unfortunately let the nerves get the better of him as he let Stenson and Mickelson both overtake him to claim the second and first place respectively. World number one Tiger Woods did not perform overly well either as he finished joint fourth with Zach Johnson and Hideki Matsuyama on two over.

After the tournament, Phil Mickelson commented, “This is such an accomplishment because I never knew whether I’d be able to develop my game to play links golf. I played arguably the best round of my career, and shot the round of my life. It’s such a difficult six-hole finish, I putted so good. It feels amazing. The range of emotions I feel are as far apart as possible after losing the US Open. But you have to be resilient in this game. These last couple of weeks, in fact these last couple of months, I’ve played some of the best golf of my career.”

Author Daniel Foster.
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