Mickelson has the best first round in Masters from the # 10;

AUGUSTA, Ga. – Even coming here with a series of bad results fresh in his mind, Phil Mickelson knew that things would change when he drove down Magnolia Lane.

Augusta National provides Lefty with a freedom that he feels is lacking in the usual places on the PGA Tour, and that was shown during a first round 67 at the Masters.

Mickelson, 48, opened the tournament with his best first round since he got the same score in 2010, when he won the third of his three green jackets. There is a long way to go, but a victory at the Masters would make Mickelson the oldest to win a major championship in the history of the game, surpbading the record recorded since 1968 by Julius Boros.

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"It was great, it was really fun," said Mickelson, who is in third place, one shot behind leaders Bryson DeChambeau and Brooks Koepka. "And it's fun to finish the round, it's fun to make a good pair at par 17 and the last birdie It's fun to finish a good round instead of filtering one here or there when you get in. So it was a good day & # 39 ; & # 39;

There were some of them for Mickelson since he won the AT & T Pebble Beach Pro & Am for his 44th PGA Tour title in February. In five events, his best result was a tie in the 37th position and two cuts were lost.

Two weeks ago, at the WGC-Dell Match Play Championship, Mickelson lost each of his first two games, which makes the day's final victory over Jason Day meaningless. But he immediately went to Augusta, and spent four days practicing here before heading to his home in San Diego, where the putting green in his house was set at a dizzying pace to deal with the speed of the Masters greens.

"I was hoping to shoot in the 60's," said Mickelson. I thought there were about 66 & # 39; Look, the greens are softer than ever, and they are not as fast as they normally are. So today was a day to take advantage of it. I am sure that they will become firmer and faster as the week progresses. But you could go after the pins and you could get aggressive. "

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