Mickelson aims joke at Europe’s touchy subject

Ross McLean
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Phil Mickelson
FIVE-TIME Major champion Phil Mickelson has cranked up the tension ahead of the start of the Ryder Cup tomorrow by teasing the court case involving Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell might have a destabilising effect on the Europe team’s inner sanctum.

The Ulster duo, who have recorded two victories from six Ryder Cup matches while paired together, find themselves on opposite sides of a legal dispute after McIlroy sued his former management company of which McDowell is a partner.

And while the American team in the past has stood accused of a lack of team spirit and togetherness in past Ryder Cups, Mickelson could not resist a barbed comment at two of Europe’s leading performers before insisting his US colleagues start the tournament as the underdogs.

“Not only are we able to play together, we also don’t litigate against each other and that’s a real plus I feel,” said Mickelson.

“We’re certainly going to need our best game as we’re here without Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson and Jason Dufner.”