AT&T PEBBLE BEACH NATIONAL PRO-AM – Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill Golf Course and Poppy Hills Golf Course, Pebble Beach, California – Phil Mickelson squashed talk of a career slump when he won last year’s AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am by five shots.
Mickelson and the field battled three days of bad weather, but clearer skies yielded even sunnier results for Lefty on Sunday when he closed with a six- under 66 for the first of four wins in the 2007 calendar year.
He tied Mark O’Meara’s 1997 tournament scoring record at 20-under 268 and also matched the record for winning margin. It was Mickelson’s third win at Pebble Beach and it came on the heels of three consecutive poor finishes to start last season.
Mickelson has opened the 2008 season with better — if not still disappointing — results. A sixth-place tie at the Buick Invitational was followed by his playoff loss toJ.B. Holmes at last week’s FBR Open.
This week, Mickelson will be one of just five players from the world top 20 in the field. Of course, the tournament draws just as much attention for its celebrity participants as its top professionals.
Actors Don Cheadle, Craig T. Nelson, Kevin Costner, Chris O’Donnell, Ray Romano, Andy Garcia, Luke Wilson, Kevin James and others will be joined by professional athletes past and present like Drew Brees, Dan Marino and Emmitt Smith, as well as a host of musicians and other entertainment personalities.
The Golf Channel will cover the first two rounds, while CBS has the weekend. Next week is the Northern Trust Open, formerly the Nissan Open, where Charles Howell III beat Mickelson in a playoff last year.
INDIAN MASTERS – Delhi Golf Club, Delhi, India – With a decent presence in the professional golf world for some time now, India will get its first European Tour event this weekend.
The Indian Open will feature the country’s strongest talent — Jyoti Randhawa, Jeev Milkha Singh, Arjun Atwal, Shiv Kapur — as well as a stable of the usual European Tour stars led by world No. 4 Ernie Els.
“It’s fantastic for Indian Golf and will give it a huge boost,” Singh was quoted on the European Tour’s website. “All of the youngsters will have an opportunity to see the top players and how they conduct themselves on the golf course.”
Delhi Golf Club was built on the site where tombs from the 17th-century Lodhi Dynasty were located. It is set up as a 7,014-yard par-71 layout.
The Golf Channel will have coverage off all four rounds beginning at 9:30 a.m. (et) each day. Next week is the Singapore Masters, where Wen-Chong Liang defeated Iain Steel in a playoff last year.
ALLIANZ CHAMPIONSHIP – The Old Course at Broken Sound, Boca Raton, Florida – The Champions Tour returns from a one-week break — and a two-week swing in Hawaii — for the Allianz Championship.
Last year, Mark James pulled away early on the back nine and closed with a four-under 68 to beat Jay Haas by two shots for his third win on the Champions Tour and first since 2005.
The tournament remains at The Old Course at Broken Sound in Boca Raton, Florida, a 6,749-yard par-72 layout.