Phil Mickelson wins Waste Management Phoenix Open

Phil Mickelson closed with a four-under-par 67 to complete a wire-to-wire victory in the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale in Arizona.

Phil Mickelson wins Waste Management Phoenix Open (Getty Images)

Phil Mickelson closed with a four-under-par 67 to complete a wire-to-wire victory in the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale in Arizona.

Mickelson opened the tournament with a first round of 60, lipping out on the final green for a 59, and he barely took his foot off the accelerator for the rest of the week. He entered the final round six clear of Brandt Snedeker and the 2012 FedEx Cup champion applied some pressure to Mickelson on the front nine, cutting the lead to three and forcing Phil to make two audacious birdies to maintain his advantage.

On the par-3 7th, the 42-year-old played a poor tee-shot and left himself a treacherous 50-foot putt across and down a slope and through the fringe. It looked like he might drop a shot and, with Snedeker in close, a two-shot swing was possible. But Mickelson, drawing on all his short game genius, asked his caddy Jim "Bones" MacKay to remove the flag and the left-hander duly rolled it in.

"I was trying to two-putt it and it was going fairly quickly when it hit the hole," said Mickelson. I got lucky to have made it."

The lead was pegged back to just three again with two holes to play but Mickelson made a birdie at the 17th to seal the deal. With a par at the last, he secured his 41st PGA Tour title. He's now ninth on the all-time list, just four PGA Tour victories behind Walter Hagen.

Snedeker who finished runner-up to Tiger Woods last week at Torrey Pines was forced to settle for second place again.

"I keep running into Hall of Famers," he joked after the round. "But, sometimes you have to tip your hat and say, `Phil played unbelievable and deserved to win.'"

Scott Piercy fired a superb closing round of 61 to climb into third place, one ahead of another American Ryan Moore.

Ireland's Padraig Harrington looked like he might mount a challenge early in his final round, but he was unable to press on. He closed with a 70 to finish the week in a tie for ninth.

Waste Management Phoenix Open TPC Scottsdale, Scottsdale, Arizona Jan 31 - Feb 3, purse $6,200,000 par 71

1   Phil Mickelson (USA)   60   65   64   67   256   $1,116,000 2   Brandt Snedeker (USA)   64   66   65   65   260   $669,600 3   Scott Piercy (USA)   70   66   64   61   261   $421,600 4   Ryan Moore (USA)   66   66   65   65   262   $297,600 5   Ryan Palmer (USA)   64   73   66   62   265   $248,000 T6   Bill Haas (USA)      65   64   70   67   266   $207,700 T6   Brendon de Jonge (Zim) 66   67   67   66   266   $207,700 T6   Brendan Steele (USA)   69   65   65   67   266   $207,700 T9   Matt Every (USA)      65   67   69   66   267   $173,600 T9   Padraig Harrington (Ire) 64   70   63   70   267   $173,600

Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage

Where next? European Tour - Stephen Gallacher wins Dubai Desert Classic

Fergus is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and it was concentrated by his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin (also of Golf Monthly)... Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?