Wednesday, 20 February, 2019

Mickelson apologises for US Open ‘putt-gate’

Things went a little better for Phil Mickelson at the 13th hole Sunday than on Saturday prompting this show of celebration Things went a little better for Phil Mickelson at the 13th hole Sunday than on Saturday prompting this show of celebration
Cary Erickson | 22 June, 2018, 20:38

Phil Mickelson theatrically parred the 13th hole in the final round of the U.S. Open on Sunday - a day after drawing a storm of criticism by hitting a moving ball on the same green.

Mickelson issued an apology via text message to reporters on Wednesday, saying: "I know this should've come sooner, but it's taken me a few days to calm down". He says: "My anger and frustration got the best of me last weekend".

On Saturday, after carding a 10 on the infamous hole and an 81 for the third round, Mickelson explained his actions by saying, "At that time, I didn't feel like going back and forth and hitting the same shot over".

"You know, it's not his finest moment, but hopefully, he'll learn from it", Amy went on.

So, here's Lefty on No. 13 at Shinnecock Hills in Southampton, New York, on Saturday - which happened to be his birthday.

After his round, he said he quickly decided the two-stroke penalty would be better than allowing the ball to roll off the green. She told the media he had offered to withdraw, but had been informed by USGA CEO Mike Davis that he had been playing within the rules.

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But the USGA, which runs the U.S. Open, determined that the two-stroke penalty was enough punishment, and Mickelson completed the tournament Sunday with a 69, finishing in a tie for 48th place. "I would gladly take the two shots over continuing that display". "That's where we clarified that 'Phil, you make a stroke at a moving ball, so we have to apply that rule'".

Asked while he walked if he had any regrets about the incident on Saturday, he replied: 'I think the real question is what am I going to do next. "That's where we clarified that, 'Phil, you actually made a stroke at a moving ball, and so we have to apply that rule.' That's different than if he had deliberately just stopped the ball or whacked it in another direction or something like that".

"USGA's John Bodenhamer says Phil Mickelson was assessed a penalty for violating Rule 14-5, but not Rule 1-2, because, "He didn't purposely stop or deflect the ball, '" Sobel wrote on Twitter".

USGA officials said disqualification was not in order for his violation.

According to Mickelson's wife Amy, the 48-year-old had offered to withdraw during his telephone call with Davis after hearing the debate over whether he should have been disqualified.