Philip Alfred "Phil" Mickelson (born June 16, 1970) (nicknamed "Lefty" for having a left-handed swing, despite being right-handed), is an American professional golfer. He is one of the leading players of his generation, having won two major championships and a total of twenty-seven events on the PGA Tour.
Born in San Diego, California and raised in Arizona (graduating from ASU), Mickelson began playing golf at a very young age. In 1990, Mickelson became the first left-hander to win the U.S. Amateur title. By 1991, he had won his first PGA Tour tournament at the Northern Telecom Open as an amateur, becoming the first to do so since Scott Verplank at the 1985 Western Open.
Mickelson continued to win many PGA Tour tournaments, winning at the Byron Nelson Golf Classic and the World Series of Golf in 1996, the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in 1998, the Colonial in 2000 and the Greater Hartford Open in 2001 and again in 2002. However, despite his victories (21 as of 2004), he had yet to win a major championship until his victory at The Masters in '04. Before the victory, he was considered to be the best golfer in the world who had not won a major, often having been accused of "choking" in such events.
His Masters win made him only the third golfer with a left-handed swing to win a major, the others being New Zealander Sir Bob Charles who won the British Open in 1963 and Canadian Mike Weir who won The Masters in 2003. (Like Mickelson, Weir is a right-hander who plays left-handed.) Mickelson is also one of only 5 golfers (Al Geiberger, Chip Beck, David Duval, Annika Sörenstam) to have ever shot 59 in competition, and is the only left-hander among them. His 59 came at the PGA Grand Slam of Golf at Poipu Bay Golf Course on November 24, 2004. However, it does not count in the record books because the Grand Slam of Golf does not count as an official event, so there are only 4 golfers to record "official" 59s. In a Monday final round, Mickelson captured his second career major championship with his victory at the 2005 PGA Championship at Baltusrol. Mickelson hit a brilliant chip shot (one of his trademark 'Phil Phlop' shots) to within two feet of the cup. Mickelson made his birdie to finish at a 4-under-par total of 276, one shot ahead of Steve Elkington and Thomas Björn. Mickelson was joined in celebration by his wife and three children; his youngest, Evan, excitedly ran around the green, performing what announcer Jim Nantz described as a victory lap.
PGA Tour career summary table
|Year||Majors||Other wins||PGA TOUR wins||Earnings ($)||Rank|
Note:Mickelson won as an amateur in 1991 and therefore did not receive any prize money.
Being a very popular golfer as well as a successful one, Mickelson is able to earn far more from endorsements than he does in prize money. In 2004, Forbes estimated his annual income at $20 million.
Results in major championships
DNP = did not play
CUT = missed the half way cut
"T" indicates a tie for a place.
PGA Tour wins
- 1991 Northern Telecom Open
- 1993 Buick Invitational of California, The International
- 1994 Mercedes Championships
- 1995 Northern Telecom Open
- 1996 Nortel Open, Phoenix Open, GTE Byron Nelson Golf Classic, NEC World Series of Golf
- 1997 Bay Hill Invitational, Sprint International
- 1998 Mercedes Championships, AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am
- 2000 Buick Invitational, BellSouth Classic, MasterCard Colonial, The Tour Championship
- 2001 Buick Invitational, Canon Greater Hartford Open
- 2002 Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, Canon Greater Hartford Open
- 2004 Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, The Masters
- 2005 FBR Open, AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, BellSouth Classic, PGA Championship
Mickelson's major championships are shown in bold.
Other professional wins
- 1993 Tournoi Perrier Paris (Europe, but it's a Challenge Tour not a European Tour event)
- 2001 Tylenol Par-3 Shootout at Treetops Resort
- 2004 TELUS Skins Game, PGA Grand Slam of Golf
- Presidents Cup: 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005
- Ryder Cup: 1995, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2004
- Dunhill Cup: 1996
- Phil Mickelson's official web site
- Profile on the PGA Tour's official site
- Phil Mickelson at Golf Stars Online Annotated links to feature articles, interviews, his career records and similar.
- Phil Mickelson on About.com Profile and stats