Well before the leaders teed off in the final round of the BMW Championship, a juicy undercard thrilled fans at Cog Hill.
Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, Nos. 1 and 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, were paired together for the 25th time in their sure-to-be World Golf Hall of Fame careers.
The last time Woods and Mickelson were paired together on the PGA TOUR was in the final round of the 2009 Masters. Mickelson shot 67 that day to finish fifth while Woods had a 68 and was sixth.
Mickelson fired another 67 Sunday to take this showdown, making six birdies on the Dubsdread Course while Woods shot 70 after a late rally which featured three birdies over the final five holes.
Fans were lined up five-deep around the first tee just before noon local time to take in the show.
"Let's get situated," said one marshal. "Tee time's in four minutes."
Mickelson -- wearing an outfit similar to the one he wore in Thursday's first round (brown shirt, light slacks, light brown shoes) -- stood on the left side of the tee box with his caddie, Jim "Bones" Mackay. Woods, teeing off first stood behind the tee box while his caddie, Steve Williams, was on the right side of the tee box. He opted for a red-stripe shirt with black slacks.
As the honorary observers were announced, Woods and Mickelson glanced at each other, a quick exchange of pleasantries.
Woods of course leads Mickelson by a wide margin in career wins and major championships, but head-to-head the race is tighter. Woods holds an 11-10-4 advantage when playing with Mickelson.
Mickelson also owns another advantage over Woods at the moment, as he is advancing to THE TOUR Championship. Woods failed to crack to the top 30 in the FedExCup standings.
|Phil Mickelson-Tiger Woods pairings on the PGA TOUR|
Below is a table comparing Woods and Mickelson in their previous pairings on TOUR.