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The Masters is run by Augusta National and independently from the PGA Tour, therefore reserving the right to invite (or revoke) whomever it wishes. It is believed officials at Augusta were concerned with the negative attention Mickelson would bring, both from the media and patrons.
Lefty's absence comes following his outspoken remarks against the PGA Tour, in which he made accusations of "obnoxious greed" before admitting his involvement in the rival LIV Golf Invitational Series was purely for leverage. He since issued a public apology and stated he was taking a break from the game - an absence which has seen him miss the lucrative Players Championship and now, the Masters.
Mickelson's apology indicated his sabbatical was self-imposed however, according to Golfweek, the same sources have said the three-time Masters champion is in fact suspended by the PGA Tour. The Tour's policy is not to comment on matters of suspension and they have made no exception here but Rory McIlroy is urging for more transparency.
It remains to be seen when the 51-year-old will return to action, with the PGA Championship in May seen as a likely venue. Mickelson made history at last year's PGA Championship at Kiawah Island where he became the oldest Major champion ever but given these revelations, it now seems increasingly unlikely.
Mickelson's actions and remarks have been widely criticised with the likes of Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas labelling the American "egotistical." Tony Jacklin, Daniel Berger are among those to have defended him, with McIlroy also insisting he deserves a second chance.
Lefty has not played on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut at the Farmers Insurance in January.
James joined Golf Monthly having previously written for other digital outlets. He is obsessed with all areas of the game – from tournament golf, to history, equipment, technique and travel. He is also an avid collector of memorabilia; with items from the likes of Bobby Jones, Tiger Woods, Francis Ouimet, Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Adam Scott and Ernie Els. As well as writing for Golf Monthly, James’ golfing highlight is fist bumping Phil Mickelson on his way to winning the Open Championship at Muirfield in 2013. James grew up on the east coast of England and is the third generation of his golfing family. He now resides in Leeds and is a member of Cobble Hall Golf Club with a handicap index of 1.7. His favourite films are The Legend of Bagger Vance and Tin Cup.
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