Mickelson’s win was the 44th in his career on the PGA TOUR, and matched Mark O’Meara with five victories at the tournament, which he first played in 1995. It was also his first victory on American soil since the Phoenix Open six years ago. He won the British Open that summer in Scotland, and the Mexico Championship last year.
Mickelson played great golf on Sunday, hitting six birdies with no bogeys. Lefty managed to turn a three-shot deficit into a three-shot lead before play was delayed. Phil wanted to keep playing, but that’s just his competitive nature.
At this stage of his career, Phil is well aware of the work he needs to put in to stay sharp. “It’s a lot more work and effort to play at this level,” Phil said. “It’s a lot more work off the course, it’s more time in the gym, it’s more time eating, it’s more time focusing – it’s all these things that go into it, and so it’s very gratifying to see the results and to finish it off the way I did.”
Pebble Beach has plenty of importance for Phil, and the win further proves it.
“This is a special place for me,” Mickelson said after the round. “My grandfather, 1919, was one of the first caddies at Pebble Beach. Every time I get here I have such special feelings for what this place means to me and my family.”
Pebble Beach also happens to be the home of the 2019 U.S. Open in June – the one Major that has alluded Phil throughout his career. Phil’s Pebble Beach and West Coast success may just be the secret ingredient for Lefty to earn his first U.S. Open.