LUSS, Scotland (AP) — Phil Mickelson is choosing competition over course conditions as he prepares for the next major.
In a year when several players are skipping the Scottish Open, Mickelson tops the field at Loch Lomond, which also features U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell. A victory or solo second by the left-handed American would put him at No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking.
The Masters winner is the only player from the top 10 entered for the $4 million event which starts Thursday.
“I always look forward to these two weeks,” Mickelson said. “I really enjoy this tournament and obviously really enjoy next week’s event, too.
“I think the best way to get in playing condition for the Open is to play well, get into contention and compete on Sunday for the title here. Having lost a couple of times in close matches here, I would like to win this tournament. It would mean a lot for me to win here.”
Mickelson insists reaching No. 1 is not his priority this week.
“It would be cool to go to the home of golf as No. 1 but it’s not something I’m thinking about yet,” he said. “I’m just trying to get my game sharp. I always felt like if I play well enough, the results would happen. It would mean a lot to me to break through and finally win.”