Phil Mickelson looking for third victory in Northern Trust Open at Riviera
Phil Mickelson feels he's back on track and ready to show the sparkling form that helped him win in Phoenix.
Last Updated: 14/02/13 6:03pm
The left-hander produced some superb golf to win in Arizona but had to settle for tied 60th when defending his crown at Pebble Beach last week.
Now he's raring to go again and capture a third Northern Trust Open at Riviera after his back-to-back wins in 2008 and 2009.
Talking ahead of the prestigious tournament in Los Angeles, the three-time Masters champion said: "I had a really good two days of practice here (Riviera) after Pebble.
"I was a fraction off from Phoenix and I believe that it's back on track. And so I'm starting to hit the ball solid again and I'm really optimistic about the week. It should be good."
The event has often been hampered by poor weather in previous years but Mickelson feels the sunny forecast will really play into his hands.
"I think this is going to be a great thing for me because the greens here are small and with good weather, they are going to be firm," said the 42-year-old American.
"And that means to hit the greens, you're going to have to fly the ball high and soft. You don't have the luxury of landing the ball short here with the kikuyu grass. It will stay short."
Mickelson is paired with Bill Haas and Keegan Bradley in the opening two rounds, a reprise of the three-man play-off won by Haas here 12 months ago.
"I always enjoy playing with both those guys," said Mickelson. "I've had a chance to get to know them on The Presidents Cup team, Ryder Cup teams, and we've really had a lot of fun. I'm looking forward to the week."
Sky Bet make Mickelson the 12/1 favourite to bank what would be his 42nd PGA Tour win.
South African Charl Schwartzel is second favourite at 18/1 while last year's winner Haas is 30/1 to retain his crown.