PHIL Mickelson is glad Tiger Woods will not be at next week’s Open Championship. But far from expressing his satisfaction for selfish reasons, the world No 6 was thinking only of his rival’s long-term future.
Woods withdrew from the Sandwich field because of injuries to his left knee and Achilles, and said “it was time to be smart” and listen to the doctors. Mickelson applauded that decision.
“When you’ve played golf at the level he’s played it you don’t just forget how to play,” said the left-hander, who for long had a fractious relationship with Woods. “He’s going to get back to a level that is close to where he was at, if not where he was at. But it won’t happen until he’s healthy.
“So by him waiting however long it takes to be healthy before he resumes his competitive play, I think is going to a plus for him in the long run.”
Woods has not played since May when he withdrew after just nine holes of the Players Championship. He is expected to be back at next month’s WGC Bridgestone Invitational.
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