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Mickelson remarks come under fire
29 Sep 2014 15:03
Phil Mickelson has been strongly criticised for openly questioning the captaincy of Tom Watson, just two hours after the United States lost the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles.
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America's 16 1/2-11 1/2 defeat was their eighth in 10 events against Europe and apparent discontent within the camp surfaced at their team press conference afterwards.
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With Watson sitting just a few feet away, Mickelson - who had been left out of a full day's play on Saturday for the first time in 10 Ryder Cup appearances - stated his support for the methods of Paul Azinger, who captained the side to their last win at Valhalla in 2008.
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Former PGA Tour player Brandel Chamblee, who now works as an analyst for Golf Channel, described Mickelson as a golfer who had "corrupted the experience of the Ryder Cup".
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And six-time major winner Nick Faldo - the losing captain in 2008 - said: "That should have been a private conversation. Phil certainly doesn't respect Tom Watson. He threw his captain right under the bus."
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Colin Montgomerie, Europe's winning captain in 2010, said on Sky Sports: "Should we go into this one hour after we've been defeated? The answer is a flat no. You support your captain under all circumstances. In public, you respect and honour your captain."
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American player Hunter Mahan attempted to play down the controversy, telling Sky Sports News on Monday: "I don't think there's a spat, it's just two strong-willled guys who want to win.
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"Hindsight's 20-20. Both guys worked hard all week - Tom's worked hard for two years - and everyone's just frustrated we couldn't get it done. We have great memories of being together and working together, but we didn't accomplish our goal which is difficult.
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"Hopefully we can get something out of this week and do better, Europe's kicked our butts for a few years now. They've got a good formula and we've got to figure out a way we can get closer to them."
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