Mickelson ends five-year drought with playoff win

Reuters

Posted at Mar 05 2018 09:46 AM | Updated as of Oct 29 2018 03:02 PM

Phil Mickelson acknowledges the crowd as he reaches the 18th green during the final round of the WGC - Mexico Championship golf tournament at Club de Golf Chapultepec. Orlando Ramirez, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Phil Mickelson ended a five-year victory drought as he sank a par putt on the first playoff hole to defeat Justin Thomas at the WGC-Mexico Championship on Sunday.

The 47-year-old Hall of Famer had not won since the 2013 British Open.

"For it to happen here in Mexico City in a WCG event against the best players in the world is such an encouraging and validating feeling for all the lows and difficult times I have experienced the last four years," said Mickelson, who claimed his 43rd PGA Tour triumph.

Thomas, who had waited for more than 30 minutes after a closing eagle for the playoff to start, hit first and was long on the 17th hole.

The 2017 PGA champion then missed a putt for par to end a weekend in which he had come from 11 strokes back to contend.

The Americans had finished regulation tied at 16-under 268 for a one-stroke lead.

Thomas, the earlier finisher, shot seven-under 64 to back up his course record 62 on Saturday.

Mickelson came home with a 66 to force the playoff at Club de Golf Chapultepec in Mexico City.

England's Tyrrell Hatton and Spaniard Rafa Cabrera Bello both shot 67s to tie for third at 15-under 269.

Hatton had led with Mickelson and Thomas going into the last hole, but a bogey on the par-four 18th ended his hopes.

Overnight leader Shubhankar Sharma of India crashed out with five bogeys in a final round 74 to finish tied for ninth at 274.

(Reporting by Gene Cherry in Salvo, North Carolina; Editing by Ian Ransom)

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