Phil Mickelson under fire after deliberately stopping ball at US Open

UPDATE: 4:50 p.m.

Mickelson shot 69 on Sunday to finish 16 over for the tournament.

Mickelson, however, said he did not have a momentary lapse and did not do it out of frustration.

Playing alongside Andrew "Beef" Johnston Saturday, Mickelson and his playing partner chuckled about the incident walking to the 14 tee. Mickelson and Johnston shared a laugh after the ordeal, but Mickelson was assessed a two-stroke penalty.

"I don't mean it disrespectful; if you're taking it that way, that's not on me, " Mickelson told reporters after the round.

Phil Mickelson incurred a two-shot penalty after stopping his ball from rolling off the 13th green in his 81. It's a risk. I could have maybe hit a shot and somehow made the putt.

"John Daly's reputation took a hit after what he did at Pinehurst in '99 and I fear it will be the same for Phil", said former U.S. Golf Association executive director David Fay.

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Purists were understandably outraged by Mickelson's actions, though he defended what he did by citing the golf adage that the rules should be used to a player's advantage. I have had multiple times where I've wanted to do that. I think he just snapped. And as it released and went through, I thought, 'Wow, that is seriously quick'.

"I know the rules".

Rather than wait to see where the ball might end up, Mickelson literally ran after the ball and hit it again as it was still moving.

He could have been disqualified, however, had rules officials deemed it a serious breach of another rule that states "a player must not take an action with the intent to influence the movement of a ball in play".

CURTIS STRANGE: Does it show disrespect to the Championship? I am well aware that the USGA essentially admitted to this, but I have long ago learned that controversy-sensitive organizations will often take blame for things that they really shouldn't just to appease the media jackals.

The difficulty of Shinnecock Hills on Saturday afternoon when the wind picked up and the exposed greens turned quick and crusty turned this U.S. Open into a grinding struggle for survival on the scoreboard. "I've had an awesome day". "Singing happy birthdays, wishing happy birthday. It's a fun birthday".

The five-time major victor finished his round 11-over for the day in 65 position.

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The world No.1 is tied at three over with defending champion Brooks Koepka, alongside Daniel Berger and Tony Finau, who both carded rounds of 66 in benign morning conditions on Long Island.

Mickelson has made no secret in the past of his dislike for some Open setups, which might be one reason he's never won an Open. And if that's the way people took it, I apologize to them.

Whether he ever wins a U.S. Open - and that prospect is increasingly bleak at age 48 - Mickelson will be remembered for what happened on the 13th green.

However you look at it, it was the kind of thing a 5-year-old does on a bad hole on a miniature golf course.

He then two-putted for 10, with the penalty.

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