Phil Mickenson became the oldest major winner in golf history on as he won the PGA championship by two strokes on Sunday. It was also the sixth major title for the 50-year-old and also became the most iconic one.
The 50-year-old American took the $2.1 million (1.7 million euro) top prize. He played some delightful shots at the windy Kiawah Islands while the younger players looked like no match for him.
“It has been an incredible day. Certainly one of the moments I’ll cherish my entire life,” Mickelson said.
Julius Boros previously held the record for the oldest man to win a major in golf history. He achieved the feat after winning the 1968 PGA championship at the age of 48.
“I don’t know how to describe the feeling of excitement and fulfillment and accomplishment to do something of this magnitude when very few people thought that I could,” Mickelson said.
Mickelson finished 72 holes on six-under 282 with South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen and and American Brooks Koepka, by grinding out a final-round one-over par 73. This championship was also the first major victory for Mickelson since the 2013 British Open.
“This is just an incredible feeling because I believed that it was possible but yet everything was saying it wasn’t. I hope others find that inspirational,” Mickelson continued to say.
Mickelson’s achievement also got his long-time rival Tiger Woods tweeting, “Truly inspirational to see @PhilMickelson do it again at 50 years of age. Congrats!!!!!!!”
It was a surreal scene at the 18th hole as the spectators swarmed around Mickelsonas he tried to walk to the 18th green after his second shot. Security personnel got outnumbered by the number of spectators there and they had to somehow force Mickelson through them to take him to the destination.
“I don’t think I’ve ever had an experience like that, so thank you for that.Slightly unnerving, but exceptionally awesome,” Mickelson told the crowd while he accepted the Wanamaker Trophy.