The 2017 Presidents Cup at Liberty National is fast-approaching, and while the players jockey for an automatic spot on the team, U.S. captain Steve Stricker is trying to determine who to add with his captain’s pick. And according to Stricker, no one gets a lifetime pass. Not even Phil Mickelson.
Speaking to reporters after his second round at the PGA Championship Friday, Stricker was asked to assess Phil’s chances of making the team. Stricker said, “[Mickelson] told me he wants to be on this team more than anything … but just like anybody else, I have got to see who is playing well at the time … I told him I would like to see him play well here on out to show me something, basically.”
Stricker did not speak those words without reservation, as he followed those comments by adding: “That doesn’t sound right coming from a guy like me talking to Phil. ‘Hey, show me something.’ That doesn’t sound right. That’s basically what I said. Show me that you are playing good at the end of the year. Because I would love to have him on the team.”
Mickelson has been mired in a slump on the course. The five-time major champion, who has appeared on every U.S. Presidents Cup team since 1994, finished 11 over through 36 holes at Quail Hollow and missing the cut for the second consecutive major. He has not won an event since the 2013 British Open and is currently ranked 17th in the U.S. Presidents Cup standings.
Mickelson still has at least a couple of FedEx Cup playoff events to prove himself, and he acknowledged as much on Friday: “If I can play well in [the FedEx Cup playoff events], I have a chance to get on the team on my own. If I play well in them and don’t make it, I have a chance to be a pick. But I’ve got to play well in them is the thing.”