Mickelson upbeat about game with U.S. Open approaching

Wed May 28, 2014 8:41pm EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

(Reuters) - Phil Mickelson heads into this week's Memorial Tournament in Dublin, Ohio optimistic about his game and his prospects for next month's U.S. Open, despite having missed two cuts in his last three starts on the PGA Tour.

The American left-hander has spent the past fortnight working hard in practice and believes that his touch around the greens, usually so brilliant, is back to its best after he struggled earlier this season.

"I really had a good couple of weeks back home," British Open champion Mickelson told reporters at Muirfield Village Golf Club on Wednesday while preparing for Thursday's opening round at the PGA Tour event hosted by Jack Nicklaus.

"I had a chance to spend some time with (swing coach) Butch (Harmon). I had a chance to spend some time with (short game coach) Dave Pelz. I'm excited about these next three weeks.

"We'll see how it goes. My short game right now, which has not been great this year ... it feels good. So I'm curious to see how it goes this week."

Mickelson, who sandwiched missed cuts at the Masters and the Players Championship around a tie for 11th at the Wells Fargo Championship in his last three starts, described the fine line that marked out a sharp short game.

"It's such a small difference between getting it inside three feet and getting inside six feet," said the 43-year-old, popularly known as 'Phil the Thrill' for his bold and often cavalier approach to golf.

"Yet it's a huge and important difference in scoring. The touch and just reading the lie and getting it in contact just right, all those little things, it's the first thing to go when you're not playing well.

"And when you're not playing well, it's the last thing to work on. Right now my short game feels really sharp. I have a much better feeling about these coming two weeks before the (U.S.) Open than I've had in a long time."   Continued...

May 9, 2014; Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, USA; Phil Mickelson tees off on the 8th hole during the second round of The Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass - Stadium Course. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports