Mickelson withdraws from US Open

The timing of the US Open this year in Wisconsin has clashed with one of his daughters' high school graduation in California and there won't be enough time to get to the Erin Hills course.

A blimp hovering over the U.S. Open golf tournament in Erin, Wisc. appears to have caught on fire and crashed, according to breaking news reports.

Mickelson had played in 23 consecutive U.S. Opens, dating back to 1994 He is a six-time U.S. Open runner-up (1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2013).

Mickelson had kept fans and officials guessing nearly down to the wire, hanging on to the longshot hope that storms might delay the start of the year's second major and allow him to attend the graduation then fly from San Diego to Wisconsin to make his 2:20 p.m.

Instead, the U.S. Open began Thursday under sunshine with little threat of bad weather all day.

"With no rain in today's forecast Phil Mickelson has officially withdrawn from the 117th U.S. Open", the U.S. PGA Tour confirmed on its Twitter page.

Mickelson was wearing a pager and had he gotten word that Amanda was coming earlier, he said he would have withdrawn from the tournament and headed back to California for the birth of his first child. "The only way to win is if you play and have a chance".

Amanda almost caused Mickelson to withdraw from the 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2. Payne Stewart made a 15-foot par putt on the last hole to beat Mickelson by one shot.

Mickelson attended that ceremony, too, though this was on a Wednesday.

Mickelson, who celebrates his 47th birthday on Friday, believes he will have more chances at that elusive U.S. Open trophy, and the next few years are favorable.

  • Julie Sanders