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Phil Mickelson Putts Himself One Step Closer to Career Grand Slam

For a lefty, everything went right for Phil Mickelson on Sunday when he hoisted the claret jug as British Open Champion, inching himself one step closer to the ultimate prize: the Grand Slam.

Mickelson hadn’t made much of a mark on this tournament until his big win Sunday – not even cracking a top-10 finish in all his years of playing. Yet, the golf gods were on his side Sunday as he wedged himself among the leaders and finished with four birdies on his final six shots to claim his first British Open victory.

With the British Open now under his belt, along with his 2004 Masters win and 2005 PGA Championship win, the only major tournament he’s still missing is the U.S. Open. Seventh time’s got to be the charm for Mickelson as he’s found himself runner-up a whopping six times (1999, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2013). If he’s able to claim a U.S. Open victory, he’ll make his name among only five other golfers who have been able to complete a career Grand Slam.

Here’s look at the Grand Slam winners through the ages:

Gene Sarazen: From his U.S. Open and PGA Championship wins in 1922 and a British Open win in 1932, it took Sarazen until 1935 at the Masters – 13 years after his first major title – to cap off his career Grand Slam.

Ben Hogan: Hogan took eight years to complete his Grand Slam with his first major win at the 1946 PGA Championship. From there, he won the 1948 U.S. Open, 1951 Masters, and 1953 British Open to become a Grand Slam champion. 

Gary Player: Player’s career Grand Slam came in 1965 at the U.S. Open. This came six years after his first wins at the 1959 British Open, 1961 Masters, and 1962 PGA Championship.

Jack Nicklaus: Nicklaus completed his Grand Slam within five years after first winning the U.S. Open in 1962, Masters and PGA Championship in 1963, and finalizing his name among the greats in 1966 with a British Open win.

Tiger Woods: Within a span of four years, Woods was able to complete his career Grand Slam with his first wins for each of the four majors including: the 1997 Masters, 1999 PGA Championship, 2000 U.S. Open, and 2000 British Open.

Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images

phil mickelson british open 2013