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Lefty declares himself Open-ready after Memphis

Phil Mickelson in the first round of the 2013 Waste Management Phoenix Open
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Phil Mickelson played in Memphis this week for only the third time in his career (and first since 2009), hoping that by altering his pre-U.S. Open schedule, he could fine-tune his game and peak in time for the major that has eluded him most.

Well, if his final shot into the 18th green was any indication, Lefty seems in fine form as he tries to improve on his five runners-up at the Open.

On Sunday, Mickelson nearly jarred his approach shot into the 72nd hole, settling for a birdie, a final-round 67, a tie for second at TPC Southwind and some welcome confidence heading into the year’s second major. The Fedex St. Jude Classic, after all, was only his third start since Augusta. 

“I really like playing here,” he said afterward. “It’s a good golf course. You have to be very precise, and it puts a premium on hitting fairways. The shot-making was very similar.”

He’s talking, of course, about Merion, where Mickelson will now head. He didn’t hit a single driver all week in Memphis, which is likely how he will approach the sub-7,000-yard classic outside Philadelphia.