FINAL STANDINGS -6 Mickelson; -4 Koepka, Oosthuizen; -2 Harrington, Lowry, Higgs, Casey; -1 Ancer, Rose, Morikawa, Rahm, Zalatoris, Scheffler, Finau, Fowler, Streelman. SELECTED OTHERS +1 Laird; +5 McIlroy, MacIntyre
Record books, be damned.
A new entry was written into the history of golf today courtesy of Phil Mickelson’s remarkable victory in the US PGA Championship at Kiawah Island.
At 50 years, 11 months and seven days, the left-hander has become the oldest man ever to win one of golf’s four majors, obliterating Julius Boros’ long-standing record.
Boros was 48 years, four months and eighteen days when he won the same championship in 1968. As of today, that victory is a smidgen less remarkable. The spot in history it occupied for so long now belongs to Mickelson.
Leading by one going into the final round, the Californian carded an adventurous 73 to win by two shots from Brooks Koepka and Louis Oosthuizen and seal an improbable sixth major victory.
"It's been an incredible day, and I've not let myself kind of think about the results until now, now that it's over," said Mickelson afterwards. "I've tried to stay more in the present and at the shot at hand and not jump ahead and race. I've tried to shut my mind to a lot of stuff going around. I wasn't watching TV. I wasn't getting on my phone. I was just trying to quiet things down because I'll get my thoughts racing and I really just tried to stay calm.
"I believed for a long time that I could play at this level again. I didn't see why I couldn't, but I wasn't executing the way I believed I could, and with the help of a lot of people - my wife especially, Andrew Getson and my brother Tim and Steve Loy - I've been able to make progress and have this week.
"It's very exciting because I've had a few breakthroughs on being able to stay more present, be able to stay more focused, and physically, I'm striking it and playing as well as I ever have but I haven't been able to see that clear picture.
"Although I believed it, until I actually did it, there was a lot of doubt, I'm sure."
As well as the Wanamaker Trophy and a place in the record books, Mickelson also receives a cheque for just over $2million and will jump back inside the world's top-50 to No.32 when the OWGR updates on Monday,
Starting the week at 115th in the world, Mickelson was the lowest-ranked player to win a major since Shaun Micheel at the 2003 US PGA.
Perhaps most significant of all, however, he receives a five-year exemption into all five major championships - including the only one he has yet to win: the US Open.
The next edition of the championship takes place in just a few weeks' time at Torrey Pines in Mickelson's native San Diego.
He couldn't... could he?
"I've believed for some time now without success that I could play at my best and compete in major championships still, but until this week, I haven't proven it to myself or anyone else," he added.
"I do believe that I believe that if I stay sharp mentally I can play well at Torrey Pines. I'll take two weeks off before that and go out to Torrey and spend time on the greens and really try to be sharp for that week.
"I know that I'm playing well and this could very well be my last really good opportunity, although I get five more, but really good opportunity to win a US Open. So I'm going to put everything I have into it."
Given what he did today, only a fool would dismiss Mickelson's prospects - and he knows it.
"It's very possible that this is the last tournament I'll ever win. But it's also very possible that I may have had a little bit of a breakthrough in some of my focus and maybe I go on a little bit of a run, I don't know.
"The point is that there's no reason why I or anybody else can't do it at a later age. It just takes a little bit more work."