AUGUSTA, GEORGIA – Leave it to Phil Mickelson to have a strong opinion on the Lexi Thompson/ball marking controversy.
Even if he didn’t want to get into the specifics of what happened, Mickelson offered this perspective:
“So rather than address that specific instance, what I would say is this: I know a number of guys on (the PGA) Tour that are loose with how they mark the ball and have not been called on it. I mean, they will move the ball two, three inches in front of their mark, and this is an intentional way to get it out of any type of impression and so forth and I think that kind of stuff needs to stop.
“But I think it should be handled within the Tour. I think that the Tour should go to those players and say, look, we’ve noticed you’ve been a little lax in how precise you’ve been in marking the ball. We’d like you to be a little bit better at it – and see if that doesn’t just kind of fix the thing.
“Because we’ve all marked the ball imprecisely, especially when you’re standing on the side of the ball like (Thompson) was and not directly behind the ball, in line with the hole, where it’s easy to draw a line.
“And I think that that should have been handled within the LPGA saying, hey, look, you’re a little lax in how you’re marking the ball. You need to be careful. Here’s a warning and let’s go from there.
“But to have a tournament be decided like that, with all the scenarios going around, as far as viewers calling in, as far as it being a 1-foot putt with really no advantage, just a little bit of loose marking, if you will, something that happens all the time, intentionally and unintentionally, I just think that’s – I think it should be reversed. I think that she should be given the trophy.”
Asked later to elaborate, Mickelson politely declined.