Mickelson claims third green jacket

 

Golf - Masters Update:Phil Mickelson landed a third green jacket after seeing-off all challengers on the final day of the Masters, including a rampant Anthony Kim, who equalled the low round of the week 65. The left hander closed with a birdie on 18 for a second consecutive 67 and 16 under par winning total to win by three from Lee Westwood, who yet again had to play bridesmaid at a major championship after shooting 71.

Mickelson played one of the shots of his life at the 13th when his drive finished in the trees and on pine straw at the long 13th.

In front of him was a gap of little more than four feet between two trunks and he had over 200 yards to go, but he decided to go for the carry over Rae's Creek and raised his club in triumph when it made it over and rolled up to within four feet of the flag.

Incredibly, he then missed what would have been his third eagle of the week on the hole, but at 14 under par he was three clear of not only Kim, but also Westwood after he also birdied there.

Mickelson, winner in 2004 and 2006, parred the next four then signed off in style before getting hugs from his wife AMy and children beside the 18th green.

Kim made a thrilling late charge. Last week’s Houston Open winner blazed over the back nine with a run of birdie, birdie, eagle, birdie from the 15th. He also holed a clutch 20 footer for par at the 18th after finding two bunkers en route to finsh third on 12 under.

Tiger Woods and KJ Choi shared fourth on 11 under after both shot 69 and played toether all four days.

The world number one recovered from a shocking start to put himself back in the hunt by holing his approach to the seventh for eagle and making birdies on the next two.

Three behind entering the back nine, he bogeyed the 11th, birdied the 13th but then came a moment of carelessness that ultimately cost him the chance of winning a fifth green jacket. At the 14th he had a six foot putt to go nine under. He missed then stepped up and also missed the par putt.

To compound the frustration he responded with and effortless eagle at the next to get back to 10 under when in a split second he may have got within two of the lead had he mot lost his composure. To run salt in the wounds he birdies the final hole.

"To finish fourth is not what I wanted," said Woods after his round. "As ther week went on on I got worse. I simply didn't get it done, too many mistakes."

Ian Poulter (73), joint halfway leader with Westwood, had fallen back into a tie for 10th on five under.

The day had already seen holes-in-one at the short 16th from Australian Nathan Green and American Ryan Moore - playing all week in a tie - and who knows what more drama was to come in a truly amazing week's golf.

Nick Watney tied Kim’s best round of the week earlier in the day. It moved the American into the top 10 on eight under and guarantees him an invite back to Augusta next year.