Mickelson: Don’t ever forget how good Tiger was

He might get back to his best – and more than likely he probably won’t. Yet don’t ever forget how good Tiger Woods really was.

That was the clear message from another US great Phil Mickelson as the golfing world watches and eagerly anticipates Tiger Woods’ return to tournament play in the next month.

Tiger Woods Tiger Woods (Credit: Anthony Powter)

While Mickelson is anchored on a career-worst of 66 tournaments without a win, it has been suggested that it must be harder than ever to win on the world’s richest circuit, the US PGA Tour.

Mickelson does agree on one aspect of that.

“There’s a lot of depth and a lot of players out here who work on their weaknesses and make them strengths, and so they are a lot tougher week in and week out [to beat],” said the five-time major champion.

That said, Mickelson says there was a time, not so long ago, when it was “way way tougher” to win on their Tour. Why?

“Because there’s nobody playing at a superior level like Tiger did,” said the 46-year-old Californian who has won 42 times and is in ninth place on the all-time record of US Tour wins.

“When Tiger would play at his best, it was almost impossible to beat him,” he said.

It was almost ironic that just a few days after Mickelson made that statement, Woods announced on his website that he was preparing for his return to the Tour.

And if Mickelson is pleased about that, he is just as excited at Woods’ involvement of the Ryder Cup which is also closing fast.

Woods, of course, will be an assistant captain to Davis Love III at the Ryder Cup and Mickelson is thrilled with his suggestions.

“I am so happy to see how well he has thought this through,” said Phil. “I can’t believe our conversations just this week, how detailed he is and the pairings, the possibilities, the players…not just what matches they’re going to play, but where on the list.”

“He has got us a really good, solid game plan that is easy to buy into and get behind. I’m very impressed.”