Phil Mickelon admits he has work to do to repair damage to his reputation after what he calls ‘a rough month’.
The American was singled out for criticism over the already infamous ‘putt-gate’ incident at the US Open last month – and his uncharacteristically poor handling of it – before finding himself at the centre of yet another rules controversy at The Greenbrier last weekend.
He did no advance media ahead of this week’s Scottish Open at Gullane but spoke to reporters in East Lothian after opening with a level-par 70.
“It’s not been my best month,” admitted the 48-year-old. “I've had a rough month. I haven't been my best. So I'm working at trying to fix that.”
Asked if he has any regrets over what has happened in the last few weeks, the five-time major winner appeared to address the US Open incident at Shinnecock Hills specifically.
“Oh sure, I made a big mistake and I wish I could take it back but I can't,” he said. “Yeah, it wasn't a great moment and I wish I could take it back but there's not much I can do about it now other than just try to act a little better.
“Not only was I not great on the course, I was not great after the round, either. So it was just not a great day, and it was my birthday. So I tend to do dumb stuff on my birthday, too.
“The thing about this is throughout my career, 25 years, there have been a lot of times where I have had to be accountable for decisions I did not make. And the reason why this has actually been easier, it was my own fault. The backlash is my own fault. So it's much easier to deal with than some of the times where I have not been involved in the decisions and had to deal with that.”