The wins are piling up, and they are impressive.
He led by as many as eight shots on the back nine at Torrey Pines. He was never seriously challenged over the final hour at Doral and Bay Hill, two more wins that marked the first time in 10 years he had three wins before going to the Masters. And he’s back to No. 1 in the world.
To no one’s surprise, he is the overwhelming favorite when the Masters gets under way tomorrow.
Mickelson came within a fraction of an inch from shooting 59 this year when he won the Phoenix Open, and while he’s a bit nervous about not playing the week before the Masters as he usually does, he can contend at Augusta even when he’s not on form. A win this year would give him as many green jackets as Woods.
Rory McIlroy is getting his game together at the right time, finishing second last week in the Texas Open. There are challengers all around, and yet most players would agree that Woods is the man to beat this week.
“Even at times where has not played his best, you know what he’s capable of, and so you’re always looking at his score,” Mickelson said.
“You’re always worried about him making that big run the way he’s always done throughout his career. And now that he’s doing it and winning tournaments in such dominating fashion, it does have the feel of what we expect to see from Tiger.”
The previous time Woods won back-to-back tournaments going into the Masters was in 2001 (Bay Hill, The Players Championship), and he made it three in a row that year by beating Mickelson and David Duval on the back nine to give him a sweep of the four professional majors.