Mickelson leads at Pebble Beach as Monday finish awaits

Pebble Beach Pro Am hit by hail storm during final round

His first one also was a Monday finish, when players returned in August - more than six months later - to finish the third round of the weather-plagued tournament to make it official. It's also the 44th win of his Tour career, as the 48-year-old has now added two wins since enduring a almost five-year victory drought following the 2013 Open.

"It's been a very special week for me and this is a very special place to me".

Holding a three-shot lead with two holes to play, he began play Monday by calmly knocking his tee shot on the par-3 17th to inside 10 feet.

Scarcely more than a month into 2019, Mickelson, 48, already has matched his victory total from 2018 - and his lone win past year, the WGC Mexico Championship, was his first since 2013.

Sunday, all hail broke loose as play was suspended for poor weather before Mickelson and Paul Casey were able to tee off for the final round.

Mickelson already made his par on the 16th and was 6 under for the day, with no bogeys on his card, and 18-under par for the tournament.

Nobody has ever won a major championship at the age Mickelson is at now, but then again, not too many players have had the confidence to play two holes essentially blindfolded - as he wanted to do to finish this off Sunday night instead of Monday morning.

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Although suspended play didn't last six months, as it did for Mickelson at Pebble in 1998, he had seemed frustrated at the decision to suspend play Sunday, with Casey arguing the other point.

"This was the first event for me as a pro".

Mickelson had no problems with Casey's decision.

"I get where Paul is coming from", Mickelson said.

"It means a lot to me to play the final round as focused and as well as I did", said Mickelson, who started the final round three strokes behind Casey.

"Sometimes I get in my own bubble", Mickelson said.

Casey received relief from a sprinkler head after finishing just short of the green when attacking the par-five flag in two, before two-putting from the fringe for a closing birdie to finish on 16 under and in second spot. In second is Scott Stallings, who sits at -15 and has finished his tournament.

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