Mickelson: I should have bent Stenson's putter

Lefty has his mojo back, but admits the Open was one that got away.

Andy Roberts's picture
Wed, 27 Jul 2016

mickelson wants to break stenson putter

Phil Mickelson has maintained his sense of humour on the eve of this week's US PGA Championship, just two weeks after being denied a second Claret Jug at the hands of Henrik Stenson. 

Mickelson, 46, carded a final-round 65 in the final group at Royal Troon only to finish three shots behind the record-breaking Swede, who fired a major-tying 63 and joint major record total of 20-under. 

Asked whether he would have done anything differently to alter the outcome of the Open Championship, Mickelson could only think of damaging Stenson's magic wand. 

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"I don’t look back on the final round with anything that I would have done different, other than maybe go over to Stenson’s bag and bend his putter a little bit,” said five-time major champion Mickelson.

"That’s probably the only thing I could have done and had a chance."

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Joking aside, Mickelson, who was locked in a ding-dong battle for much of the final round with Stenson, admits it was a major that got away.

"I think it's one of those things where I'll look back over time and my disappointment will probably increase, because I think it's the first time in my career that I have played to that level of golf and not had it be enough to win a tournament," he added.

"That's a disappointing thing because I would have loved to have added another Claret Jug."

On the flip side of his emotions, Mickelson has got his mojo back - and rightly so. 

The American lines up as one of the favourites for the season's final major this week following five top-five finishes in his last 14 starts, helping him vault back to 13th in the world.

He also brings course form to the mix, albeit in 2005 when winning the US PGA Championship when it was last staged at this week's venue Baltusrol Golf Club.

"I'm starting to play good golf again," he said.

"I'm having a lot more fun on the course. I'm able to play the game a lot stress-free. I had two bogey-free rounds in a major. That's really good for me.

"I'm starting to really enjoy playing and competing, because I'm playing back to the level that I expect to play at."

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