Phil Mickelson is easily one of golf’s all-time greats. With five major championships and 44 PGA Tour wins, which is currently good for ninth on the all-time list, Lefty is already a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, inducted in 2012. Mickelson turned 50 on June 16 and is now eligible for the Champions Tour but he’s not quite ready to ride off into the sunset and let the young guns of the game fully take over just yet.
Phil’s still got plenty of game and he showed it off on Friday at the Travelers Championship, shooting a second-round 63 to take a one-shot lead into the final 36 holes. A win this week would tie him with Walter Hagen for eighth on the all-time PGA Tour wins list. It seems like it’s been forever since Phil Mickelson was in the winner’s circle but it actually hasn’t been as long as some would think.
Phil Mickelson fell out of the top 50 in the world ranking this past November for the first time since 1993
This past November, following a T-28 finish at the WGC-HSBC Champions, Phil Mickelson dropped out of the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time since November 28, 1993, when he was just 23 years old.
That’s close to 26 years of being ranked in the top 50 in the world, which is simply incredible. In that time span, 348 different players won on the PGA Tour. To put this another way, when Phil Mickelson first cracked the top 50, current world number one Rory McIlroy, who just happens to be the current leader in consecutive weeks in the top 50, was four years old.
And it looks like Mickelson, who is currently ranked 66th in the world, is ready to jump back into that top 50.
Lefty shot a brilliant seven-under 63 on Friday at the Travelers Championship
In Thursday’s opening round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands, the PGA Tour’s third tournament since the season resumed, Phil Mickelson fired a six-under round of 64 and was just four shots off the lead. Playing alongside McIlroy and Bryson DeChambeau, Lefty was one better on Friday, shooting a seven-under 63 to get to 13-under for the week, giving him a one-shot lead over Will Gordon and first-round leader Mackenzie Hughes, who followed up his amazing first-round 60 with a 68 on Friday.
Since 2003, only three players aged 50 or over have won on the PGA Tour, the most recent being Davis Love III, who won the Wyndham Championship in 2015 at the age of 51. But Lefty will be right there in the mix this weekend in an attempt to become the latest 50-year-old to shock the world. Phil Mickelson was extremely accurate on Friday, missing just three fairways and hitting 14 of 18 greens in regulation.
When was the last time Phil Mickelson won on the PGA Tour?
So when was Phil Mickelson’s last win on the PGA Tour? Win number 44 actually came just last year at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, a tournament he’s won five times, a record he shares with two-time major winner Mark O’Meara.
In last year’s edition, Mickelson shot 65-68-70-65 to finish at 19-under, three strokes better than Paul Casey.