Published: Sun, June 17, 2018
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Phil Mickelson Took Advantage Of Risky Loophole With Double-Putt

Phil Mickelson Took Advantage Of Risky Loophole With Double-Putt

Phil Mickelson's 48th birthday took a freakish twist on Saturday as he was penalised for deliberately hitting a moving ball in the third round of the US Open.

Mickelson faced an 18-foot downhill putt for bogey, and when he missed his ball continued rolling down the green and, likely, off it. Mickelson jogged up to the ball and hit it back toward the hole before it had stopped moving, an obvious breach of the rules.

"That's the most out-of-character I have ever seen Phil Mickelson", Azinger said.

Mickelson would shoot an 11-over 81 in the third round that dropped him to 17 over for the week and in 65th place.

Phil Mickelson reacts to a shot from the fescue on the fifth hole during Saturday's third round of the U.S. Open.

"I've wanted to do it many times before and finally did".

Phil Mickelson came to this US Open looking to end his curse at the championship and so join the immortals who have completed the career grand slam. "But it was just a moment - I think it's just a moment of madness". He got off to a decent start on Saturday with three consecutive pars and then birdied the 481-yard, par-4 fourth hole to get to 1-under for the day.

That is a two-stroke penalty that is given after he finishes the hole.

Instead, in a surprising post-round interview, the American claimed that his decision to putt his moving ball back up the green was indeed a deliberate action.

He said he knew the ball was going to roll off the green, which is why he chose to hit it while it was still moving.

Phil Mickelson just did something you do if you're four years old and playing mini golf for the first time.

"I know it's a two-shot penalty, and at that time I just didn't feel like going back and forth and hitting the same shot over", Mickelson said after his round.

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