Halleran/Getty ImagesPhil Mickelson is playing this week for the first time since the Ryder Cup.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
A month removed from the Ryder Cup, Phil Mickelson is still not over the historic loss.
“The first two weeks following The Ryder Cup was a really tough low, one of the biggest lows of my career,” he said Wednesday at the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions. “We expected to win. I think that the disappointment will last a lot longer than a month. I still feel disappointed from it.”
Though Mickelson matched a team-high with 3 points for the week, he squandered a 1-up lead with two holes to play against Justin Rose in singles play.
The U.S. went on to lose 14 1/2-13 1/2 after blowing a 10-6 lead going into the final day at Medinah.
“I still feel that over the next two years, we’ll still have the same disappointment from not winning this year’s Ryder Cup,” Mickelson said.
There was, however, a silver lining in Mickelson’s eyes: The partnership he and Keegan Bradley forged. The two went 3-0 playing together and in doing so Mickelson saw some areas of his own game that he needs to improve on.
“I have this new kind of excitement and energy that Keegan has, and it’s rubbed off on me and I am excited to play and work and practice,” Mickelson said. “When we played alternate shot and I was hitting the ball from the middle of the fairway way down there, we were shooting some low scores.
“If I could drive the ball the way Keegan did, I would really have some opportunities and chances to do something special in my career.”
Indeed. Mickelson’s best year driving the ball in the last 10 years came in 2004 — the same year he won his first career major.
“I think [Mickelson] is going to try to focus in on getting the ball in the fairway more and in play, because he’s the absolute best iron player I’ve ever seen,” Bradley said. “If he can do that more consistently, he’ll win so many times more and he’ll be competitive well past and in his 50s.”