Phil Mickelson has successfully captured his third Masters victory as he moves into the record books as just the fifth man to hold that title. Lefty shot a 5-under 67 en route to his latest green jacket, holding off the likes of Lee Westwood, Anthony Kim, K.J. Choi, and Tiger Woods in the process. He finished at 16-under for the tournament.
Mickelson had remained in the hunt throughout the week, as he entered Sunday’s final round in the final pairing with the aforementioned Westwood. With three rounds of 67 and a second round of 71, this year’s Masters appears to be his most impressive yet. Adding to the dramatics was the storyline of his family’s hardships, as Phil’s wife Amy and his mother Mary both have been battling breast cancer over the past year.
The left-hander’s other two Masters victories came in 2004 and 2006. Only Arnold Palmer, Tiger Woods, and Jack Nicklaus have won more.
England’s Lee Westwood entered the day with the lead, but the strong play from Mickelson forced much pressure. Westwood nailed a key birdie putt on 17 to move within two strokes, but ultimately could not overcome the deficit in beating Phil. He finished at .
Anthony Kim, the 24-year old phenom, solidified his status as one of golf’s most promising players with a tremendous 65 in the final round. His pin-point shots alongside spectacular putting was judgmental in his strong finish. Many believe there is little doubt he will not win a major eventually, and Sunday’s performance proves why.
Coming into the tournament, the biggest storyline had been the return of the number one player in the world, Tiger Woods. Despite bogeying his first two holes, Tiger triumphed back with an eagle on seven. He ultimately finished with a strong 69, leaving him tied with K.J. Choi for 11-under for the tournament.
When asked when he would play next, Tiger stated he would, “take some time and re-evaluate his performance.”
While many other triumphed, the first major of 2010 falls to Phil Mickelson. As CBS commentators put it best: “This is Phil Mickelson’s Masters.”