Planet Golf — 18 July 2013 by GW staff and news services
OPEN: Mickelson wins fifth major

GULLANE, Scotland  — Phil Mickelson won his fifth career major and first Open Championship Sunday at Muirfield, matching the low round of the week with a 5-under 66 that included four birdies over his final six holes.

“This is a day I’ll remember my entire life,” Mickelson said. “It was one of the best rounds of golf I’ve ever played.”

Henrik Stenson was second three strokes back.

The victory gives Mickelson three legs of the career grand slam and is his second win as many weeks after his victory at the Scottish Open last week. He also earns 600 FedExCup points with the win.

Others with five career majors include Byron Nelson, Seve Ballesteros, James Braid, J.H. Taylor, Peter Thomson and now Mickelson.

Prior to this year, Mickelson had just two top 10s in 19 career appearances in the Open with his best finish a runner-up in 2011.

This year he was one better thanks to a spectacular final round.

Mickelson went out in 2 under, making two birdies and no bogeys before a hiccup on the 10th.

Meanwhile, overnight leader Lee Westwood had staked as much a three-stroke lead over the field Sunday only to falter with four bogeys in a nine-hole stretch in the middle of his round.

Westwood finished four shots back in a tie for third after a 75, along with Adam Scott and Ian  Poulter, all of whom stumbled at one point or another on Sunday.

Mickelson didn’t.

The lefthander played his final eight holes in 4 under with no bogeys. Included was a birdie from 12 feet on the final hole.

As soon as the ball dropped in the cup, Mickelson pumped his fists in triumph, knowing it would be hard for anyone to chase down his 3-under 281 total. He headed off to hug his wife and kids while his caddie broke down in tears.

Six times a runner-up at the U.S. Open — including this year — golf’s oldest major championship is his.

Leaderboard: Phil Mickelson  69-74-72-66—281 (-3); Henrik Stenson  70-70-74-70—284 (E); Ian Poulter 72-71-75-67—285 (+1) ; Adam Scott  71-72-70-72—285 (+1); Lee Westwood 72-68-70-75—285 (+1)

Phil Mickelson

— Mickelson entered the final round of the 2013 Open Championship trailing Lee Westwood by five shots, but a 5-under 66 (equaling the round of the week/Zach Johnson/R1) led to a three-stroke win over Henrik Stenson.

— Mickelson earns his 42nd career PGA Tour victory at the age of 43 years, 1 month and 5 days in his 480th Toour event (462nd as a professional).

ALL-TIME PGA TOUR WINS

Rank     Player                           Wins

1          Sam Snead                   82

2          Tiger Woods                 78

3          Jack Nicklaus                73

4          Ben Hogan                    64

5          Arnold Palmer               62

6          Byron Nelson                52

7          Billy Casper                  51

8          Walter Hagen                45

9          Phil Mickelson             42        

10         Cary Middlecoff            39

Tom Watson                 39

— Mickelson collects 600 points and moves from No. 4 to No. 2 in FedExCup standings, with 2,118 points.

— Mickelson becomes the first player to win the European Tour’s Scottish Open and then the Open Championship the following week.

— Mickelson is the third-consecutive champion in his 40s at the Open Championship, joining 42-year olds Darren Clarke (2011) and Ernie Els (2012). He is one of three players in their 40s to win on Tour in 2013 (Mickelson-2, Brian Gay, Ken Duke).

— Mickelson notches his fifth Major Championship (2004, 2006 & 2010 Masters, 2005 PGA Championship and 2013 Open Championship).

— List of players with at least five Major Championship victories: 18 (Jack Nicklaus), 14 (Tiger Woods), 11 (Walter Hagen), 9 (Ben Hogan, Gary Player), 8 (Tom Watson), 7 (Harry Vardon, Bobby Jones, Gene Sarazen, Sam Snead, Arnold Palmer), 6 (Lee Trevino, Nick Faldo), 5 (James Braid, James H. Taylor, Byron Nelson, Peter Thomson, Seve Ballesteros, Mickelson).

— Becomes just the second lefthander to win the Open Championship (Bob Charles, 1963).

— Mickelson’s win comes in his 20th Open start, tied with Darren Clarke (2011) for most starts before winning.

— Mickelson wins for the second time this season (Waste Management Phoenix Open), winning multiple events for the 14th season of his career. With wins in each of the last 10 seasons on the PGA Tour, he owns the longest active streak. Mickelson has won at least one tournament in 20 different seasons, trailing only Sam Snead (24) and Jack Nicklaus (21) who have won in more seasons.

— Earlier this year, finished runner-up at the U.S. Open for the sixth time. His other second-place finishes in majors came at the 2001 PGA Championship and 2011 Open Championship. The U.S. Open now remains the elusive tournament to Mickelson earning a Career Grand Slam. The list of players who have won all four Majors: Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods.

— Mickelson finished birdie-birdie, one of just seven players to perform that feat this week (R1-Tom Lehman, Hideki Matsuyama; R2-Nicolas Colsaerts; R3-Graham DeLaet; R4-Mickelson, Harris English, Justin Leonard).

— Becomes the second-consecutive Open Champion (Ernie Els/2012) to birdie the final hole in the final round. Over the last 21 years, Stewart Cink in 2009 is the only other champion who performed the feat.

— Mickelson’s win snaps a streak of four straight international winners at the Majors: 2013 U.S. Open/Justin Rose, 2013 Masters/Adam Scott, 2012 PGA Championship/Rory McIlroy and 2012 Open Championship/Ernie Els.

— Enshrined into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2012, becomes the second-consecutive Open Champion/male Hall of Fame member to win a major after being inducted, joining 2012 Open champion Ernie Els (who was inducted in 2011). They are the first to perform the feat since Lee Trevino was inducted in 1981 and later won the 1984 PGA Championship. The only other players to win a major after being inducted are Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player.

— Only four players have won the Open Championship with a lower final-round than Mickelson (66): Greg Norman (64/1993), Tom Watson (65/1977), Seve Ballesteros (65/1988) and Justin Leonard (65/1997).

— Becomes the 28th different American to win the Open Championship, recording the 43rd win by that group.

Countries Represented – Winners of the Open Championship: 

United States (28 winners, 43 wins)

Scotland (22 winners, 41 wins)

England (14 winners, 28 wins)

South Africa (4 winners, 10 wins)

Australia (4 winners, 9 wins)

Northern Ireland (2 winners, 2 wins)

Spain (1 winner, 3 wins)

Republic of Ireland (1 winner, 2 wins)

Argentina (1 winner, 1 win)

France (1 winner, 1 win)

New Zealand (1 winner, 1 win)

Zimbabwe (1 winner, 1 win)

— Mickelson becomes just the second multiple winner over the last 20 major championships, joining Rory McIlroy:

Year       Winner                          Major                         

2013       Phil Mickelson             Open Championship

2013       Justin Rose                   U.S. Open

2013       Adam Scott                  Masters

2012       Rory McIlroy                 PGA

2012       Ernie Els                       Open Championship

2012       Webb Simpson             U.S. Open

2012       Bubba Watson              Masters                       

2011       Keegan Bradley             PGA                           

2011       Darren Clarke                Open Championship

2011       Rory McIlroy                 U.S. Open

2011       Charl Schwartzel            Masters                       

2010       Martin Kaymer               PGA                           

2010       Louis Oosthuizen           Open Championship

2010       Graeme McDowell         U.S. Open

2010       Phil Mickelson             Masters                                   

2009       Y.E. Yang                     PGA                           

2009       Stewart Cink                  Open Championship

2009       Lucas Glover                 U.S. Open

2009       Angel Cabrera               Masters                       

2008       Padraig Harrington        PGA

Lee Westwood

— Westwood carried a two-stroke lead over Tiger Woods and Hunter Mahan into the final round of the Open Championship, but his 4-over 75 led to a T3 finish.

— Westwood was seeking his third Tour win: 1998 Zurich Classic of New Orleans and the 2010 FedEx St. Jude Classic.

— Westwood is now one of five when holding the lead/co-lead on the PGA Tour, winning the 1998 Zurich Classic of New Orleans. He failed to win the 2013 Open Championship (T3/final-round 75), 2010 Players Championship (T4/74), 2010 Masters (2nd/71) and the 2008 World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational (T2/69).

— Westwood now owns five top-10 finishes in 19 starts at the Open Championship, finishing runner-up in 2010, T3 in 2009 and 2013, solo-fourth in 2004 and T10 in 1997.

— Dating to a T23 at the 2009 U.S. Open, Westwood has now finished inside the top 25 in 14 of his last 17 Majors, including 10 top 10s (two of which came this year: T8 at Masters, T3 at Open Championship).

Most major starts without a victory (counting this week):

Player                                Starts                                       Muirfield 2013

Lee Westwood                    62                                             T3

Miguel Angel Jimenez          61                                             T13

Sergio Garcia                      60                                             T21

Steve Stricker                     59                                             not playing

Tiger Woods

— FedExCup leader Woods, a three-time winner of the Open Championship (2000, 2005-06), carded a final-round 3-over 74 to finish T6.

— Sunday represented Woods’ 1,100th official round on the PGA Tour.

— Woods has never come-from-behind to win a major. He is 14 of 15 in majors when holding at least a share of the lead going into the final round, with Y.E. Yang’s come-from-behind win at the 2009 PGA Championship his only blemish.

— Woods was seeking his 15th Major Championship victory in his 69th start (63 professional, 6 amateur) in a major.

— This week marked Woods’ 16th made cut in 17 starts (15 professional) at the Open Championship. His only miss came in 2009 at Turnberry.

Adam Scott

— Making his 14th Open Championship start, Masters champion Scott held the lead on the back nine of the Open Championship for the second straight year, but four consecutive bogeys on Nos. 13-16 led to a T3 finish. A year ago, Scott carried a four-stroke lead into the final round at Royal Lytham, but a final-round 75 (including four consecutive bogeys on Nos. 15-18) led to a runner-up finish.

— Scott has three top-10 finishes in 14 starts at the Open: runner-up in 2013, T3 in 2003 and T8 in 2006.

— A player has won the Masters and Open Championship in the same season eight times: Ben Hogan (1953), Arnold Palmer (1962), Jack Nicklaus (1966), Gary Player (1974), Tom Watson (1977), Nick Faldo (1990), Mark O’Meara (1998) and Tiger Woods (2005).

— Scott’s last three final rounds at the Open Championship: 75 (2011, 2012), 72 (2013).

— Scott was seeking to become the fifth Australian winner at the British Open: Peter Thomson (5 wins), Greg Norman (2), Kel Nagle (1) and Ian Baker-Finch (1).

–Scott has finished inside the top 15 in eight of his last 11 Major Championships.

Ernie Els

— Defending champion Els final-round 3-over 74 to finish T26 in his 22nd Open Championship and 83rd Major Championship .

— Els was seeking to become the seventh player with consecutive Open Championship victories since 1951: Padraig Harrington (2007-08), Tiger Woods (2005-06), Tom Watson (1982-83), Lee Trevino (1971-72), Arnold Palmer (1961-62), Peter Thomson (1954-56). Sixteen players have performed the feat throughout Open history.

— Els made his third Open start at Muirfield (T5-1992, 1-2002, T26-2013).

— Most rounds in the 60s in Open Championship history (39-Ernie Els, 37-Nick Faldo, 33-Jack Nicklaus).

— Most under-par rounds since 1963 at the Open Championship: 59 (Jack Nicklaus), 53 (Nick Faldo), 49 (Ernie Els), 45 (Tom Watson).

Tournament Notes:

— Making his 106th PGA Tour start, Henrik Stenson notched his second runner-up finish, with his first coming earlier this year at the Shell Houston Open. He has now finished inside the top 3 in three of the last six years at the Open Championship (T3/2008, T3/2010, 2nd/2013).

— Ian Poulter made a Sunday charge with a 4-under 67, including an eagle-birdie-birdie-birdie stretch on Nos. 9-12 at Muirfield. His T3 finish is his third top 10 in 13 Open starts (2nd-2008, T3-2013, T9-2012).

— Playing in the final group of the last two Majors, Hunter Mahan (75) finished T9. Last month, he entered the final round of the U.S. Open at T2 (also in the last group), trailing Phil Mickelson by one stroke, before a final-round 75 led to a T4 finish.

— Four players had top-10 finishes the past two Open Championships: Adam Scott (2nd in 2012/T3 in 2013), Tiger Woods (T3/T6), Zach Johnson (T9/T6), Ian Poulter (T9/T3).

— Second-round leader and 49-year-old Miguel Angel Jimenez finished T13 in his attempt to become the oldest winner of a Major Championship. By comparison, the oldest Open Championship winner is Tom Morris Sr., winning in 1867 at the age of 46 years and 99 days.

— First-round leader Zach Johnson finished T6, just one week after losing in a playoff to Jordan Spieth at the John Deere Classic. After missing his first three cuts at the Open (2004-06), he has since reeled off seven consecutive made cuts, with a T9 last year his previous-best outing.

— Jason Day finished T32 in his attempt to become the only player with top-10 finishes in the first three Major Championships this season (3rd-Masters, T2-U.S. Open). This week marked his third Open Championship start (T60-2010, T30-2011, T32-2013).

— John Deere Classic champion Jordan Spieth finished T44 in his first Open Championship. His only other Major Championship starts came at the U.S. Open, finishing T21 in 2012 and missing the cut in 2013. Since 1934, only 10 players on the PGA TOUR have won the week before winning a major, with Lee Trevino the only player performing the feat at the British Open.

— Stewart Cink (T26) closed with a 1-under 69, his first round in the 60s since closing with a 69 to win the 2009 Open Championship at Turnberry.

— Just nine players have won the Open Championship in their first appearance: Ben Curtis (2003), Tom Watson (1975), Tony Lema (1964), Ben Hogan (1953), Denny Shute (1933), Jock Hutchison (1921), Mungo Park (1874), Tom Kidd (1873) and Willie Park Sr. (1860).

— Of the first timers at the Open Championship in 2013, Hideki Matsuyama had the best finish at T6.

— Dating to the 2009 Masters (19 majors), the 54-hole leader/co-leader has won just four times: Rory McIlroy (2012 PGA Championship, 2011 U.S. Open), Darren Clarke (2011 Open Championship), Louis Oosthuizen (2010 Open Championship) and Angel Cabrera (2009 Masters).

— Dating to the 1958 Open Championship, the 54-hole leader/co-leader has prevailed 30 times in 56 attempts, including two of the last three seasons (Darren Clarke in 2011 and Louis Oosthuizen in 2010).

— The third-round leader/co-leader has gone on to win 12 of 28 72-hole events on the PGA Tour in 2013, most recently Bill Haas at the AT&T National.

—  In comparison to Mickelson’s five-stroke come-from-behind win, the largest final round comeback victory at the Open Championship is 10 strokes by Paul Lawrie in 1999. A year ago, Ernie Els came from six strokes back to overtake Adam Scott.

In the 16 Open Championships held at Muirfield, the 54-hole leader/co-leader has gone on to win 10 times: Harold Hilton (1892), James Braid (1901), Ted Ray (1912), Walter Hagen (1929), Alf Perry (1935), Henry Cotton (1948), Lee Trevino (1972), Tom Watson (1980), Nick Faldo (1992), Ernie Els (2002).

—  Just nine players have won the Open Championship in their first appearance: Ben Curtis (2003), Tom Watson (1975), Tony Lema (1964), Ben Hogan (1953), Denny Shute (1933), Jock Hutchison (1921), Mungo Park (1874), Tom Kidd (1873) and Willie Park Sr. (1860).

— Of the first timers at the Open Championship in 2013, Jordan Spieth is top of the class at T11.

— Muirfield played at 7,216 yards during the final round, compared to the scorecard length of 7,192 yards.

 

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