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Golf Australia Express : Issue 34
no onE In golf was really surprised when it was announced Phil Mickelson was elected into the hall of fame. nor were we surprised that he got the nod in the first year he was eligible for the prized ballot. The swashbuckling swinger known simply as Lefty has thrilled crowds around the world for two decades with his aggressive game and showman-like personality. The announcement of his inclusion came back in november, but it’s on Monday at the world Golf Village in St Augustine, florida that Lefty will be officially inducted into golf immortality. Mickelson became eligible upon turning 40 in June and he received 72 per cent of the votes cast by a selection panel made up of golf historians, journalists and dignitaries of the game. "being called a hall of fame golfer, it does make me sound a little bit old," Mickelson said when first told of the honour at the Singapore Open. “but I don't feel old. I feel like I've got a lot of great golf ahead of me.” That may be true, but he’s got a helluva lot of great golf behind him, too. As a winner of 40 PGA Tour events, seven european Tour titles and four majors—including three Masters—Mickelson will be remembered for taking (and pulling off) daredevil stunts with club in hand, all in the pursuit of a win. his PGA Tour record is the ninth best of all time. he trails legends the likes of Sam Snead, Jack nicklaus, Tiger woods, ben hogan, Arnold Palmer, byron nelson, billy casper and walter hagen. At 41 and still playing superbly, there’s a couple of those names he’d like to leapfrog by career’s end. while Mickelson might not be the greatest golfer of his generation, he could well be its most exciting. who could forget that miraculous shot between the pines at Augusta in 2010, or the numerous times he's threaded through gaps that hardly exist? In many ways, he’s been an American version of the great Seve ballesteros. An escape artist. A creative artist. Phil's an american version of the great seve Ballesteros. an escape artist. a creative artist. covEr story tHE