Among Phil Mickelson’s amazing accomplishments are his 11 consecutive appearances representing the US at the Ryder Cup. Even more impressive about that feat is the fact Mickelson has never needed to be a captain’s pick to make the squad. And boy, does he know it.
Coming off his latest – and probably his favourite – time wearing the red, white and blue, Mickelson, 46, was asked ahead of the Safeway Open if he sees himself as a player or a vice captain/captain for the 2018 Ryder Cup. And this was his awesome answer:
“It’s been 22 years since there have been 10 Americans that have been able to beat me so I don’t know why it would stop now,” Mickelson said.
Boom! Then Mickelson dropped the mic and walked out of the media centre. Kidding.
But seriously, while that sounds like a pretty cocky response, it’s tough to argue with that logic. Despite his age, Mickelson didn’t just qualify for the team again this year, he did it easily by finishing third in Ryder Cup points, behind only Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth.
“I plan on being on the team in France and absolutely one of my goals is to play in France because I’ve never been on a winning Ryder Cup team over in Europe,” Mickelson added. “I want to go win a Ryder Cup over there and I want to be part of that as a player.”
The last time Mickelson didn’t make the team came in 1993, his first full year on the PGA Tour. And even then, he probably should have made the team as one of the two captain’s picks (Funny enough, Tom Watson was the American captain that year) based on his two victories that season.
That was a long time ago and we’ve got a long way to go until France in two years. But it’s hard to imagine Mickelson’s 10-birdie barrage on Sunday at Hazeltine being his last time teeing it up in the biennial matches. Apparently, he can’t picture it, either.