Phil Mickelson looking to put US Open disappointment behind him at Greenbrier Classic
Last Updated: July 4, 2013 7:18pm
Phil Mickelson: Looking to put his US Open heartbreak behind him this week
Phil Mickelson returns to action for the first time since his latest US Open heartbreak this week and admits he will look to try and put one of his greatest career disappointments behind him at the Greenbrier Classic.
The 43-year-old finished joint second behind England's Justin Rose at Merion last month, extending his own unwanted record of runner-up finishes in the event to six.
But Mickelson acknowledged his latest near-miss was the hardest to take as he let slip a one-shot lead heading into the final round of the tournament by shooting a closing 74.
"This one's probably the toughest for me (to take), because at 43 and coming so close five times, it would have changed the way I look at this tournament altogether and the way I would have looked at my record," he said after losing out in Pennsylvania.
"If I had won or if I ultimately win, I'll look back at the other Opens and think that it was a positive play. If I never get the Open, then I look back and every time I think of the US Open, I just think of heartbreak."
Mickelson will provide the headline attraction at Old White TPC in West Virginia and has been paired with fellow left-handers Bubba Watson - the 2012 Masters champion - and defending champion Ted Potter in the opening two rounds.
Potter, who finished eagle-birdie 12 months ago to force a play-off with Troy Kelly that he won on the third extra hole, is in just his second full season on the PGA Tour and admits he is not used to such big-name groupings.
"Playing with Phil and Bubba is definitely going to be different," said the 29-year-old from Florida. "I am not used to seeing that many people spectating out there. I have to focus on what I am doing and not pay attention what's going on around me.
"I've never played with Bubba before and the only time I played with Phil was in the play-off in the par-three tournament at the Masters."
Speaking about his game after just one top-10 finish and eight missed cuts in 2013, Potter added: "I feel like I have more confidence coming into this week, knowing I played so well here last year. I feel good about coming here, I definitely have good vibes from last year."
Mickelson has missed the cut in his previous two appearances in the event, while Watson is making his tournament debut this week.