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Phil Mickelson wins British Open

Putting is so important in major championships, and Phil Mickelson was on fire today as he stormed to a stunning comeback win in the British Open. He birdied four of the last sic holes and said in the interview above that it’s the best he’s ever putted.

Meanwhile Lee Westwood faded and Tiger Woods was good but not good enough again. Think about it – Tiger hasn’t won a major in 5 years! He used to be well ahead of the pace set by Jack Nicklaus but know the two are pretty close. Passing Jack is no longer an easy task for Woods. There are plenty of young golfers who have emerged in the sport, and Mickelson continues to be a force in the game as well.

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Darren Clarke wins the British Open

Darren Clarke lifts the claret jug after winning the 140th Open Championship at Royal St Georges Golf club in Sandwich,England on Sunday, July 17, 2011. UPI/Hugo Philpott

Phil Michelson made a spectacular charge on the front nine, but Darren Clarke held him off to win his first major championship at the 140th Open Championship at Royal St Georges Golf club.

Tiger Woods misses British Open cut

He doesn’t miss the cut often, so when he does, it’s news.

For the first time in three years and the second in a major championship as a pro, Tiger Woods will not compete on the weekend.

The world’s No. 1 player missed the cut Friday at the British Open, shooting a 4-over 74 at Turnberry that had him headed back home to Florida on the same day that 59-year-old Tom Watson tied for the 36-hole lead.

Woods holds the tour record of 142 consecutive cuts made, which he set from 1998 to 2005.

Will Tiger miss the cut at the British Open?

Tiger Woods is having a hell of a time at Turnberry the past couple days.

Woods, who shot a 71 in the opening round of the 2009 British Open on Thursday, is in danger of missing the cut after shooting a 74 in Round 2 on Friday. He is now five-over-par and is toeing the potential cut line to get into Round 3.

Tiger has missed only one cut in a major during his professional career, which came in the 2006 U.S. Open following the death of his father. Considering he opened play as a 9/4 favorite to win, Woods missing the opening cut would be a shocking development.

Outside of Tiger potentially missing the cut, the big story is that 59-year-old Tom Watson once again sits atop the leader board. Watson was one-stroke off of Miguel Jimenez entering play on Friday, but shot a 70 in Round 2 and is now tied with Steve Marino for first place with a score of 135.

The second round is still going on, but Mark Calcavecchia is currently one stroke behind Watson and Marino at 136, while Jimenez, Vijay Singh, Ross Fisher, Retief Goosen and Kenichi Kuboya are all tied at 137.

Update: Woods officially missed the cut at the British Open. It was only the second time he missed the cut at a major in his professional career.

Young and old golfers vying to dismantle Tiger’s hold of the PGA

January opens a new chapter to all our lives, but it is a sign of renewal for some of our favorite pastimes as well. The PGA tour started their 2009 play on the isles of Hawaii as they begin their annual West Coast swing of the golf season. Golfers young and old are scrambling to establish themselves on the tour before the #1 player in the world comes back to work in late March.

Many believe that Anthony Kim has the attitude and game to compete with Tiger Woods this season. Camilo Villegas was a star in waiting during his first two years on the tour and blossomed during the 2008 FedEx Cup playoffs with two tournament victories. Both players have become the poster boys for the youth movement on the tour, but their success will be measured by tournament wins, especially capturing multiple major titles.

Defending FedEx Cup champion Vijay Singh did compete in the first tournament of the season, but will sit out the remainder of the West Coast swing. He will have knee surgery to repair a torn cartilage and is expected to miss five weeks of action. Sergio Garcia still remains the best player on the tour not to have won a major title. He tied for second place in the PGA Championship last year and has finished with a top-five finish in three of the last four British Opens. Unfortunately for Garcia, no trophies are given to the runner-up. And then there is the dilemma of Phil Mickelson.

Lefty had won a major tournament in three consecutive years before losing the 2006 U.S. Open at Winged Foot with a double bogey on the 18th hole. Since then, Mickelson has not won a major and more importantly his round play has been inconsistent. Lefty in his last 10 major appearances has missed the cut twice and finished a combined 80 shots out of the lead. Drastic times call for drastic measures, and golf swing guru Butch Harmon has been brought in to assist Mickelson in regaining his stroke for the coming season.

What would a PGA tour preview be without a Tiger update? Well, he began hitting balls at a driving range in December and declared himself better than ever. Though he told Craig Sager at the Orlando/Boston game last night that his game just isn’t there yet. No one in the Woods camp will confirm his exact return date, but the official statement is that Tiger is ahead of his rehabilitation schedule after reconstructive knee surgery in June. It is safe to assume that Woods will compete in tournaments prior to the start of the Masters in April. But one thing is for certain, once Tiger returns, he will be ready to win.

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