Mickelson hits every fairway for first time in two decades

Mickelson hits every fairway for first time in two decades

Graeme McDowell sits three shots off the lead after the opening round of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in California.

"To the best of my knowledge it's taken me 27 years and a few months to hit all fairways in a single round in a competition", said Mickelson, who initially believed it was the first time he had accomplished the feat.

His round included a birdie on the par-three ninth, his 18th hole of the day, to leave him alongside Gay on seven under.

Mickelson won the AT&T first in 1998 and then again in 2005 and 2007 and for the fourth time in 2012 with that victory seven years ago very special for him.

Gay finished in the top 10 here previous year, too, so he has a little bit of recent history, but he doesn't have a top-20 on the PGA Tour since the Wyndham Championship last August.

Defending champion Ted Potter, Jr., who held off Johnson, Day, Mickelson and Chez Reavie to win by three previous year, shot 82 at Spyglass Hill.

But what would please Mickelson more than anything is to reign supreme in four months time when the US Open returns to Pebble Beach.

Against just six other GB&I players, I love his chances to cash this bet.

The unusually accurate driving helped the five-times major champion to a six-under-par 65 at Monterey Peninsula, one of three courses used at the event. He has the best scoring average - 66.4 - on the course during the tournament since 2010 (minimum of four rounds played).

The players will rotate at each of the three courses through Saturday, with Sunday's final round taking place at Pebble Beach. "I ran a number of putts by, but I made a lot of them coming back and made a lot of short ones".

"I have the honour to play all three courses here and, just because of such handsome scenery, I couldn't even focus on where my ball was going".

"If I think about it that way it it certainly makes me happier, frees me up a bit".

Hole of the day: After almost dumping his tee shot in the Pacific Ocean, Brandt Snedeker (who has won two of the last six of these tournaments) somehow made birdie from this preposterous position.

Meanwhile, Aaron Baddeley was next best of the Australians with a three-under-par 69 at the hard Spyglass Hill leaving him just four shots off the pace.

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