Mickelson to make senior circuit debut as US Open prep

NEW YORK (AFP) – Five-time major winner Phil Mickelson said on Friday he will make his PGA Tour Champions debut tomorrow after missing the cut at the Northern Trust.

Michelson turned 50 in June, but has not yet played on the Champions Tour, formerly known as the Senior Tour.

But he said on Twitter that failing to advance to the weekend – and next week’s second event in the FedEx Cup playoffs – gave him a perfect opportunity.

“I’ve been playing well and I want to play,” Mickelson wrote after completing a second-round 68 at the Northern Trust at TPC Boston.

“I wish I was playing in Chicago next week but excited to play my first Champions event.”

Mickelson’s three-under effort on Friday followed a first-round 74 and left him well outside the projected cutline.

It’s the first time in his career that he has failed to reach the second round of the US tour’s playoffs.

Mickelson will tee it up tomorrow at the Charles Schwab Series at Ozarks National in Ridgedale, Missouri, which runs through Wednesday.

The tournament will give him some competitive rounds before next month’s pandemic-delayed US Open, which will be held at Winged Foot, where he endured a bitter Open defeat in 2006.

Earlier this year, Mickelson said he wasn’t sure he would begin playing on the Champions tour this year, since he felt he could still be competitive on the PGA Tour.

“I feel like to be successful on a tour, you have to commit entirely to that one tour,” he said. “So if it’s either going to be the PGA Tour or the Champions Tour, I don’t see me oscillating back and forth.”

Mickelson has had mixed results on the PGA Tour this season. He finished third at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am in February, but missed the cut in back-to-back events before play was halted for three months because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Since the restart he has a runner-up finish at the World Golf Championships St Jude Invitational, but also missed a cut and failed to crack the top 50 in three events.