Mickelson + Montgomerie both suffer final hole collapse to lose US Open

mulligan, 18 June 2006, Comments Off on Mickelson + Montgomerie both suffer final hole collapse to lose US Open
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I don’t know where to begin — I’m still in complete shock after watching the final round of the U.S. Open. What I saw on the 18th hole from the co-leaders Phil Mickelson and Colin Montgomerie reminded me of the the meltdown of Jean Van de Velde at Carnoustie.

Poor Monty. First, let’s begin with poor Colin Montgomerie. Colin rolled in an improbable 60 foot birdie putt on the 17th hole to pull to +4, and just one behind leader Phil Mickelson, who was at +3. Monty then striped his drive on 18 down the middle. Meanwhile, Phil bogeyed 16, so Monty was now tied for the lead. With about 171 yards to the hole, Monty proceeded to hit a really weak fade iron that ended in gnarly rough. It was so bad, Monty exclaimed: “What kind of shot is that!” Monty hacked out all the way across the green, and proceeded to three putt from there to finish with a double bogey 6, + 6 for the tourney.

The return of the old Phil. OK, so then there was Phil. After bogeying 16, he narrowly missed a 30 foot birdie putt on the 17th. Geoff Ogilvie, playing ahead of Phil, chipped in just a minute earlier to save par and remain at +5. So, as things stood when Phil reached the tee at the 18th, Phil was at +4, Monty +4, and Ogilvie +5. But Phil got to hear about Monty self-destruction on 18 even before he teed off.

Then, in what will be the most second-guessed shot of his career, Phil pulled out Driver, the same driver that left him missing all but 2 fairways on Sunday. (Maybe he should have kept on playing with 2 drivers this week, instead of switching back to only 1.) Anyway, Phil sliced his drive so far left that it hit the grandstand tent on the left and got a somewhat lucky bounce off the roof to stay on the golf course.

Then, in what will be the second most second-guessed shot of his career, Phil pulled out a long iron to try to slice a 210 yard shot through trees. Instead of playing for the bogey (and what he should have known would have been a playoff with Ogilvy), Phil went for the Hail Mary. His prayers were not answered. Phil hit a tree and the ball ricocheted only a few yards forward. Now desperate and visibly shaken, Phil had to try another slice shot. This time, he made it through the trees, only to find a terrible fried egg lie in the left greenside bunker. Phil blasted on and off the green. Now, he needed to chip in for bogey and a playoff. But no luck. He rolled in a 8-footer to “save” a double bogey, and keep 2nd place.

Ogilvy wins: Oh, so 29-year old Aussie Geoff Ogilvy won. The guy’s got a silky smooth swing and loads of talent, but he may have gotten a gift today.


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