Should defending champ Phil Mickelson play at PGA Championsh…

Phil Mickelson surprised the sports activities world final Could by successful the PGA Championship at age 50, changing into the oldest participant to win a serious championship.

Since then, he has been steeped in controversy due to derisive feedback he made to Golf Digest and the Fireplace Pit Collective concerning the PGA Tour and the Saudi Arabian regime bankrolling a rival golf league.

Mickelson skipped the Masters in April, and, though he’s formally registered to play within the PGA Championship on Could 19-22 at Southern Hills in Tulsa, Okla., there’s no assure he’ll be there.

Three questions with Bob Harig, creator of the just-published “Tiger & Phil: Golf’s Most Fascinating Rivalry”:

Q: Do you assume Phil will present up and play at Southern Hills?

Harig: I hope he performs. However how does he go to a match and keep away from the crush? Possibly he’ll do some form of a sit-down interview with anyone, then not take any media questions. I didn’t assume there was any method he would skip the Masters. Now I believe something’s attainable. Lacking the PGA which might actually be a disgrace given how large of a deal that was a yr in the past.

I discover it unhappy within the sense that, overlook about how we acquired thus far. That’s one other story. We are able to debate whether or not he deserves this or not. However the man received the PGA final yr, turned the oldest main champion. The document had stood for 53 years. He received on a U.S. Open-style course, towards a man in Brooks Koepka who’s received 4 majors. And he ought to be reveling in that proper now. He ought to be capable to stay with that endlessly, it doesn’t matter what he did.

Q: Did you ever think about a defending champion would possibly miss a serious that he’d simply received?

Harig: It’s uncommon, however it’s occurred earlier than. One occasion that involves thoughts is when Tiger [Woods] received the PGA at Southern Hills in 2007 after which didn’t play in ’08 as a result of he was out with knee surgical procedure. The PGA was in August then. We knew for months that Tiger wasn’t going to play as a result of instantly after the U.S. Open he had surgical procedure they usually informed us he’d be out for the yr.

Q: You’ve coated golf for a very long time. What’s one thing concerning the guide which may shock individuals?

Phil was Tiger earlier than Tiger. Should you’re a sure age, you won’t notice how nice Phil was as a younger participant. He was each bit as heralded as Tiger as a younger child. Tiger ended up getting extra consideration as a result of he received all these U.S. Amateurs and he was a phenomenon. His dad was sort of a bombastic determine, and Phil’s dad was within the background. However for those who took their newbie data and put them in entrance of anyone, and that particular person didn’t know who they had been or what they did as execs, you would possibly say that Phil would have the higher professional profession.

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