At age 50, Phil Mickelson just became the oldest golfer to ever win a major, taking the PGA Championship by a margin of 2 strokes. He passes Julius Boros for the distinction, who was a sprightly 48 when he won the same championship in 1968.
The moment was memorable for the history involved in the victory - not only did Phil become the oldest major champion, but also won the title a mere 16 years after his first Championship - making it the longest gap between wins at the same major in tour history. The triumph also gave him a tournament victory in each of his 4 decades on tour, a feat which has only been equaled by 3 other golfers.
The history was there, but the win was perhaps just as memorable for the way the gallery of fans dumped the Covid craziness and embraced a remarkable and positive outcome that wasn't corrupted by politics or dominated by visions of masks and social distancing. The crowds that gathered around the 18th green chanting Phil's name reminded me of how sports felt the last time an old legend, Tiger Woods, remarkably won a major 2 years ago - several months before Coronavirus was even a word most Americans knew. Just look at that beautiful crowd ... not a mask to be seen:
And here's the moment of victory:
It was not a journey without blunders, as Phil struggled at times in his final round. But his nearest competitors, Brooks Koepka and Louis Oosthuizen, also faltered at key moments on Sunday, leaving the title open for Phil's taking.
I'll leave you with a clip from the closing ceremony at the Ocean Course on Kiawah Island, SC. It was a truly remarkable and classy sports moment from the legendary Lefty.