Phil Mickelson to miss next month’s Masters

Three-time champion Phil Mickelson is set to miss the Masters next month for the first time in 28 years.

Mickelson, 51, is taking a break from the game after apologising for his criticism of Saudi Arabia’s regime.

On Monday, Mickelson’s name was removed from a list of active players competing at the tournament, which he last won in 2010.

The Masters, which was won last year by Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama, begins at Augusta National on 7 April.

Mickelson, the US PGA champion, was involved with a Saudi Arabian-backed golf series but faced a backlash for comments he made in November to writer Alan Shipnuck.

Before the publication of his unauthorised biography of the American, Shipnuck released the interview last month in which Mickelson branded the Saudi regime as “scary” but said the project was a “once in a lifetime opportunity to reshape how the PGA Tour operates”.

Although Mickelson claimed his remarks were taken out of context, he admitted his comments were “reckless” and that he was “deeply sorry for his choice of words”.

Mickelson said he would use his time away from golf “to work on becoming the man I want to be”.

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