Golf: Phil Mickelson to cut back on tournaments next year to avoid burnout

Phil Mickelson plans to play in the week before each of the major championships next year despite making as yet unspecified cuts to his overall schedule for 2014, the British Open champion said today. -- PHOTO: AFP
Phil Mickelson plans to play in the week before each of the major championships next year despite making as yet unspecified cuts to his overall schedule for 2014, the British Open champion said today. -- PHOTO: AFP

SHANGHAI (REUTERS) - Phil Mickelson plans to play in the week before each of the major championships next year despite making as yet unspecified cuts to his overall schedule for 2014, the British Open champion said today.

The 43-year-old American said he would compete in Houston before the Masters, in Memphis before the US Open, in Scotland before the British Open and in Akron before the PGA Championship.

Mickelson has clearly given particular thought to his preparations for the US Open, the only major missing from his collection and a tournament where he has been runner-up six times.

Victory at the Pinehurst No. 2 course next June would make him only the sixth player to complete the modern Grand Slam and he is determined not to go to North Carolina underprepared.

"I like to have a three-week stretch heading into the majors although (next year the lead-up to the US Open) will be the only three-week stretch," he said on the eve of the WGC-HSBC Champions tournament.

Left unsaid was which tournaments the five-time major winner would scrap though his comments suggested the PGA Tour's season-ending FedExCup play-offs might be on the chopping block.

"It really took a lot out of me these last couple of months where we played nine out of 12 weeks, and it was difficult for me to get the proper preparation for each tournament," he added.

"I don't want to enter a tournament where I feel unprepared, and that's the baseline I'm going to use as I build my schedule next year."