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Tour Report: Mickelson: ‘I’ve been lethargic’

PGATOUR.com

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Phil Mickelson has failed to break par in his last nine rounds on the PGA TOUR.

Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images Phil Mickelson has failed to break par in his last nine rounds on the PGA TOUR.

By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM

Phil Mickelson hasn’t had a finish in the top 50 on the PGA TOUR since May.

“I’ve been a little lethargic the last two months,” Mickelson admitted Thursday in an interview with Charlie Rose on “CBS This Morning.” “Mentally I haven’t been focusing as fine as I need to.”

Mickelson has missed the cut in each of his last two starts on TOUR, including at the British Open, where he had high hopes after finishing a career-best second there a year ago. He has also failed to break par in each of his last nine rounds on TOUR, the longest such stretch of his 20-year career.

“The last two months I haven’t played my best,” Mickelson said. “I haven’t played with the same purpose or the same intention, whether it’s the approach going into the golf tournament or on each individual shot. That’s what I’m going to focus on to get this back on track.”

Earlier this season, Mickelson appeared to be on track for a big year.

He won the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, shooting a 64 to leave playing partner Tiger Woods in the dust in a head-to-head duel in the final round.

A week later at Riviera, Mickelson nearly won again, making a 25-foot birdie putt on the final hole to force a three-way playoff eventually won by Bill Haas, who made a 43-foot birdie on the first extra hole.

The following month, Mickelson finished fourth in Houston before a third-round 66 left him just one shot off the lead at the Masters. He would finish in a tie for third.

Since then, however, he’s had just one finish inside the top 25. He withdrew following a 79 in the first round of the Memorial tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance, citing “mental fatigue.” Mickelson has also suffered from psoriatic arthritis since 2010.

“For the most part I’ve been hitting a number of good shots and the bad shots have crept in not because of a mechanical issue, but a thought process issue,” Mickelson said. “I’ve been letting where I don’t want the ball to go creep into my head as opposed to where I want it to go.”

He’ll have plenty of time to work on that over the next two months. Mickelson will play seven of the next nine weeks starting with next week’s World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, where he has finished in top 10 five times in his career.


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