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Mickelson Finds Augusta Silver Lining From Match Play Losses

There are a lot of perks to being Phil Mickelson. 

Going 1-2 in the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, Mickelson picked up a check for something in the neighborhood of $70,000 and got the weekend off. 

However, with the first major championship of the season a week and a half away, there’s no such thing as a weekend off, so Mickelson is taking the silver lining approach to failing to advance out of pool play in Austin by heading straight for Augusta National.

“I’m going to go (to Augusta) now,” Mickelson said after defeating Jason Day 2-up. “I’m going to go there tonight and spend the next three or four days there and I’m looking forward to it. It’s the greatest week of the year. It’s the best week, best tournament. (I’m) excited to get there and spend time.

“I think that’s why I’ve enjoyed this match play is if things don’t go well — I always go (to Augusta) the Monday, Tuesday the week before, so it works out, I get an extra day or two there.”

Mickelson has typically played the week before the Masters at the Houston Open in the past, but with the schedule reconfiguration, he’s opting to skip next week’s Valero Texas Open in favor of working on his swing at home.

 

Mickelson said he’ll get to work with his swing coach, Andrew Getson, and his trainer, Sean Cochran, to be fully prepared for Augusta National’s test beginning on April 11.

“This has been a good week to find out what I’m doing well, what I need to work on,” he explained. “Andrew and I were talking about it last night. I now have 11 days to work on it. That’s the good thing that comes out of these matches. Plus, you have the intensity of the final round every time you tee off. It’s not like it’s a third day in a regular tournament, oh, well, whatever. You’ve got to play well to win, so you can really find out what areas you need work.”

The three-time Masters champion said he will return home to California after his scouting trip this weekend. He has a bentgrass green in his backyard that he says he can get rolling at a 15 on the stimpmeter to imitate Augusta’s green speeds. 

“I’ll go have a good work week, really maximize my speed and see if I can hit it long and far at Augusta and hopefully straight,” he said.

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