British Open: Phil Mickelson gives kiss to Claret Jug before first tee shot

Phil Mickelson
Before teeing off in the final round of the Open Championship as he plays for his sixth major championship victory, Phil Mickelson made it a point to go over and sneak in a kiss with the Claret Jug for some good luck.
By T.J. Auclair
PGA.com
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Series: Golf Buzz

Published: Sunday, July 17, 2016 | 9:50 a.m.

Phil Mickelson has a chance today to become just the third player in 30 years to win six major championships.

Before he stepped up to the first tee, Mickelson made it a point to walk over and kiss the casing that was holding the coveted Claret Jug, which he won in 2012 at Muirfield:

Looks like it worked early too. Mickelson stuffed his approach at the first hole to within 3 feet of the hole to set up a birdie to snag the lead by one at 12 under after a Henrik Stenson bogey.

That's not the first symbolic nod -- if you want to call it that -- that Mickelson has made for "luck" in a major. On the 18th hole in the final round of the 2005 PGA Championship at Baltusrol, Mickelson hit his tee shot near a plaque commemorating Jack Nicklaus's famous one-iron to 22 feet in 1967 setting up a U.S. Open win.

Before hitting his approach, Mickelson tapped the plaque with his club for good luck.

Moments later, he captured his second major win.  

T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.