The early stages of a tournament aren’t supposed to be where Phil Mickelson struggles. It’s the back nine on Sunday that has been his problem in the past.
But he can’t even get out of the gate these days, starting off +5 after seven holes at the Masters. Looks like we can scratch the world’s Number Two out of contention before anyone else. He’ll be closer to Gary Player (+7) than to Tiger Woods this year.
Mickelson was reportedly, “burning up the course” in practice rounds, which was an excuse for his poor tournament play leading up to Augusta. No one ever questioned whether Mickelson had the shots in his bag, it’s what happens between the ears that remains a mystery.
Woods could have a horrible round today and still finish no worse than +2, I’d bet. Count Mickelson out of the Top Five in the Masters for the first time in five years and barring a miraculous turnaround, pencil him in going home early in 2007.
Sergio Garcia is hanging in there at +1.
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I'm still rooting for Lefty, although (at this juncture) I hope he makes the cut!