HomeSportsPhil Mickelson will miss the cut at the US Open

Phil Mickelson will miss the cut at the US Open

Placeholder while loading article actions

Phil Mickelson’s first major since joining the LIV Golf Invitational Series breakaway will be short-lived as he misses the cut at the US Open in Brookline, Mass. Mickelson finished 11 over par after 36 holes, well off a cut line that is projected to be around 4 over.

Given his unfortunate history in the only major tournament he has never won, Mickelson has long been the center of attention at the US Open, but this year’s spotlight has been shaded differently. After years of criticizing the PGA Tour’s control of players’ media rights, its support for what has become known as LIV Golf – and its willingness to minimize human rights abuses by its backers of Saudi funds – became public in February. This led to an extended absence: Mickelson’s final PGA Tour event was in late January. He missed the Masters for the first time since 1994 and did not show up to defend his 2021 PGA Championship win.

Rory McIlroy beat Phil Mickelson, but golf’s us vs them era is just beginning

When he appeared earlier this month for LIV’s inaugural event outside London, he was bearded and dressed in black, a look he wore at the Country Club this week. And as he answered a number of tough questions from reporters at a press conference on Monday about taking Saudi money, Country Club fans seemed delighted to see him, even as he was dragging himself on a course on which he could not compete.

Mickelson’s second round on Friday was better than his first on Thursday – when he bogeyed three of his first five holes, doubled the sixth and finished 8 of 78 – but it wasn’t enough to see him through the weekend. end. After starting with three pars, Mickelson landed three consecutive bogeys, and by the time he birdied his second of the tournament with a long putt from the green on his 14th hole, he was already two figures over par. He hit another long putt for a birdie on the ensuing hole, but it still didn’t matter.

Mickelson’s missed cut isn’t exactly a surprise in a tournament in which he’s had a tortured history. He has finished runners-up at the US Open six times, trailing only Jack Nicklaus’ seven runner-up finishes at the British Open in Grand Slam finals. The difference? Nicklaus has also won the British Open three times, while the US Open remains the only major to elude Mickelson. And in his eight US Opens since his most recent runner-up in 2013, Mickelson has finished no better than a tie for 28th, with three missed cuts.

Since his emotional run to the 2021 PGA Championship title, when at 50 he became the oldest player to win a major, Mickelson has missed the cut in two of the three majors he has played in and finished a 62nd non-competitive in the other. His results on the regular PGA Tour weren’t much better, and he finished tied for 33rd out of 48 in the first uncut LIV tournament.

Golf has done so much good – for Phil Mickelson and his buddies

Yet such was Mickelson’s fame that Saudi backers of LIV thought it would be wise to pay him more than $200 million just to join the league, which he created by helping pay the lawyers who drafted its operating agreement. He will be the face of the franchise, even if his best years on the course are behind him.

His future in non-LIV events is less certain. The PGA Tour has suspended all players who have joined the breakaway circuit, but has no say in who can participate in golf’s major tournaments, which are run by outside entities. As a former Masters and PGA Championship winner, Mickelson has a lifetime pass to those tournaments — assuming Augusta National and the PGA of America don’t change their rules — and he gets free entry to the British Open as a former champion until the age of 60. Additionally, Mickelson has three more years of automatic US Open qualification by virtue of winning the PGA Championship last year.

But other than that, Mickelson seems destined to spend his golden years of golf playing mostly against lesser competition on a lighter schedule for easy money on the LIV Tour.

Must Read