Phil-Mickelson-surges-to-first-British-Open-title-with-5-under-66

Phil Mickelson, the pro-golfer from the States, recently won The Open, held at Muirfield, Scotland. Mickelson has won many tournaments during his professional career, including three Masters and a USPGA Championship, yet, even after twenty attempts had never won The Open title, in fact up until this year had never won on British Soil! Without doubt he has one of the best short-games in golf, yet playing on a links course, as befits The Open Championship he seemed to struggle.
Now, he had two choices, either accept that whilst he had mastered the game in the States an Open Championship would always allude him… or… change his strategy and tactics, practice hard and have the belief in himself and his game to win on a links-style course.
The rest is history, for not only did he put in hours of practice on courses similar to where Open Championships are held, he made the journey to Scotland the week before and won, after a play-off, The Scottish Open. Perhaps buoyed by this inaugural win on UK soil, exactly a week later he was lifting the Claret Jug, his name written in history.
Sometimes the final piece of the jigsaw is to have that belief that one day, when all the factors are in place, you have put in the preparation, then the prize is yours?

Never ever underestimate the power of the mind! How many attempts do you give something before giving up? It took Phil twenty years to achieve his target, how long will yours take?

On a recent Golf day, albeit not as grand as The Open, I had a pretty average front 9 holes, nothing spectacular, and to be honest going through the motions. The back 9 started, to say the least, pretty average again, bogeying (1 over par) the 10th hole before sinking an 8 foot putt for birdie (one under par) at the Par 3 11th. Sometimes you need that little piece of ‘lady luck’ to kick-start what you are doing and I confidently strode onto the 12th Tee before dispatching my drive down the fairway. A wedge to the green left a 20 foot putt that I carefully lined up… and sunk! Two birdies, back-to-back… I was on a roll! Next came a Par five and having found the green in two I narrowly missed the Eagle putt (2 under par) but tapped-in for birdie. The 14th hole, a par 4 was long, but downhill and having driven the centre of the fairway my second shot was pulled to the left. My playing partner commented at the time, ‘That’s a shame, you’ve spoiled your sequence’ to which I replied, ‘Don’t worry, I’ll chip it in’. Yes, you’ve guessed it, with a sand wedge in hand, from about 32 feet away, the ball sailed over the bunker, bounced a couple of times on the green before running up to the hole and dropping in the cup! Birdie number 4!! How long could this run continue? At the 15th, another par 4 I was 5 foot from the pin in two, and confidently stroked the putt home (I was beginning to rue the sloppy 3 putt on the par 5 tenth now)! Holes 16, 17 and 18 were uneventful… but were all played in level par, in fact I missed a 6 footer for birdie at the last, but wow, what a round of golf! Take your opportunities when you have them, and keep believing!

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