Pros advice

Phil Mickelson praying for rain in last-ditch US Open bid

Phil Mickelson is praying for some rain to dampen the Erin Hills greens in a last-ditch attempt to make the tournament. But are the weather gods on his side this week?

It’s a longshot, and not just because of the weather. Lefty would require a four-hour delay to have even a modicum of hope of making the first tee.

However, shortly after his announcement, the weather did indeed take a turn for the worse; scattered thunderstorms reported to be forecast around Milwaukee on Thursday morning. The course was closed to spectators yesterday morning as bad weather swept over the Wisconsin venue.

The season’s second major is the big one for Mickelson, who needs to win to complete a career Grand Slam and join Ben Hogan, Gene Sarazen, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods in achieving that unbelievable feat.

Mickelson will be 2,000 miles away in southern California. At 10am Pacific time, he’ll be at Pacific Ridge School in Carlsbad to see his oldest daughter, Amanda, make one of the speeches at her graduation ceremony. If the US Open was at Torrey Pines, he’d have no problems making an afternoon tee time, but is there any realistic hope that he can make it to Wisconsin for 2.20pm Central time to join Steve Stricker and Stewart Cink in the one of the third last groups?

“I need a four-hour delay,” admitted Mickelson at the weekend. “I need a minimum four-hour delay most likely. That’s the way I kind of mapped it out. I should get in the air right around my tee time. It’s about a 3-hour 20-minute flight.”

He added: “I am going to keep my game sharp the next couple of days… but it’s not looking good. It’s totally fine. I’m not going to really be prepared for Erin Hills. I haven’t gone there. I don’t know the golf course.”

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