Phil Mickelson sets the pace in Boston with birdie-filled 63
August 30, 2013 — Updated 1848 GMT (0248 HKT)
- Phil Mickelson takes early lead at Deutche Bank with eight under 63
- Cards eight birdies and an eagle on the TPC Boston
- Tiger Woods opens with three under 68 in same group as Mickelson
- Second event of Fedex Cup series with 100-strong field
(CNN) — Phil Mickelson is making a habit of setting pulses racing with inspired birdie filled charges this year and Friday was no exception on the TPC Boston.
‘Lefty’ completed his first nine holes in a mere 28 shots to put the world’s media on 59 alert again before closing with an eight-under 63 for the early lead at the Deutsche Bank Championship.
Two bogeys coming home on the front nine, he started on the 10th tee, scuppered the hopes of headline writers, but he did mix that with a superb eagle on the second, nearly holing his approach for an albatross.
Playing his last hole, the 43-year-old American need a birdie to equal the course record 61 of Mike Weir back in 2008, but instead made a five for an anti climactic ending after finding trouble off the tee.
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Nonetheless he had outplayed playing partners Tiger Woods, who is still well placed after a 68 and Masters champions Adam Scott, winner of the Barclays last week, but struggling to an opening 73.
Mickelson, who carded seven birdies in his first nine holes, said he always knew it would be a little tougher on the next nine.
“I still felt I could have shot three or four under (for that nine), but I wasn’t too worried about shooting 59,” he told the official PGA Tour website.
His heroics left him one clear of in-form Kevin Stadler in the second tournament of the money spinning FedEx Cup.
Earlier this season, Mickelson narrowly missed a birdie putt on the last green as he opened with a 60 at the Phoenix Open, going on to win the tournament by four shots.
And in testing final round conditions at Muirfield, Mickelson conjured up four birdies in the last six holes to claim the British Open title for the first time.
It was the fifth major of his career and he admitted afterwards probably the most satisfying, particularly after having to settle for his sixth runner-up spot at the preceding U.S. Open won by Justin Rose.
Defending champion Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland was among the afternoon starters, looking to kick start a disappointing season after his heroics of 2012.
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