British Open 2013: Day 4 Leaderboard Analysis, Highlights and More

Benjamin KleinContributor IIIJuly 21, 2013

GULLANE, SCOTLAND - JULY 21:  Phil Mickelson of the United States reacts after making a birdie putt on the 14th green during the final round of the 142nd Open Championship at Muirfield on July 21, 2013 in Gullane, Scotland.  (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Andrew Redington/Getty Images

Phil Mickelson won the 2013 British Open after shooting a five-under 66 in the fourth round and three-under for the major tournament. He entered Sunday five strokes behind Lee Westwood for the championship lead but was able to put together an impressive performance on the final day to earn this huge victory.

The official Twitter account for the PGA Tour announced Mickelson as the next recipient of the Claret Jug:

Here’s a look at the final leaderboard:

This is the fifth major championship for Mickelson and his first at The Open Championship. He was cut from the tournament last year, but finished tied for second place the year prior. Lefty has now won three different major championships, according to Tim Dahlberg of the Associated Press:

A strong fourth round highlighted Mickelson’s performance at Muirfield. On Sunday, he made six birdies and bogeyed just one hole. He was fantastic down the stretch as he was four-under on the last six holes. Here’s a look at Mickelson’s birdie on the 18th hole to close out his day, per Carol Schram of Bleacher Report:

Throughout the championship, Mickelson hit 60.7 percent of the fairways, 63.9 percent of the greens in regulation and needed 2.6 putts per green in regulation.

Here’s what Mickelson said about his round, per Kelly Tilghman of The Golf Channel:

Keegan Bradley, who finished six-over, knew that Phil was going to be tough to beat:

Mickelson becomes the first player with back-to-back wins in Scotland—as he just won the Scottish Open as well—according to Jason Sobel of The Golf Channel:

The champion was still very far from being determined as the Day 3 leaders approached the back nine. This tweet from the official Twitter account for the PGA Tour shows how many golfers were in contention:

Westwood held the lead entering the final round at Muirfield, but he really played poorly on Sunday. He struggled to hit the fairway on several holes, and that was one of the main reasons why he shot four-over on the day and one-over for the championship. He finished tied for third place.

One of the biggest stories of the day was the surge made by Ian Poulter. Poulter started the day tied for 19th place. Justin Ray of ESPN notes that the worst 54-hole position to win a major was Hale Irwin at the 1990 U.S. Open (T-20th):

Poulter was five-over through the first three rounds at The Open Championship, but had a monster round on Sunday. While he bogeyed the third hole, he went on a run from the fifth to the 12th where he made four birdies and an eagle without dropping a shot. He couldn’t climb all the way back, though, as he finished one-over.

Speaking of those coming up short, Tiger Woods failed to capture the 15th major of his career on Sunday. He started the round just two shots behind Westwood for the lead, but failed to make up any ground. The three-time British Open champion shot three-over on the day to finish two-over for the tournament, finishing in a tie for sixth place.

Sunday was all about Phil, though, and his great run toward The Open Championship title.

Mickelson will only have a few weeks to celebrate his victory, as the PGA Championship, the final major of the season, is set to commence on Aug. 8 at Oak Hill. There, he’ll look to become the first to win two majors in a season since Padraig Harrington won The Open Championship and PGA Championship back in 2008.