Mickelson, Barkley win Capital One’s The Match: Champions for Change

  • Phil Mickelson sinks birdie to putt to win The Match III

Phil Mickelson proved he has a future as a golf coach if he so desires after turning perennial golf struggler Charles Barkley into a more than capable partner to dominate Stephen Curry and Peyton Manning in Capital One’s The Match: Champions for Change.

Despite losing the first hole at Stone Canyon Golf Club, the Mickelson / Barkley duo took control from that point and closed things out on the 15th hole in the modified alternate shot format, winning 4 and 3. 

But more important than the championship belts Mickelson and Barkley earned was the $5,455,000 raised to support Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and organizations that support them (Thurgood Marshall Fund, United Negro College Fund). Over 3.5 million meals were also donated to Feeding America as part of some of the charitable efforts linked to the contest.

Mickelson was able to guide NBA legend Barkley, who for the most part was able to keep his notoriously unreliable swing under control, over two-time Super Bowl champion Manning and current Golden State Warriors legend and three-time NBA Champion Curry.

Barkley had the occasional mishap, but with Mickelson directing his 25-handicap teammate to hit safe irons off the tee so he could handle the majority of approach shots the pair became too formidable for their opponents. 

A full run down of the action, collated from our live blog, can be found below.

The Curry / Manning team gets off to a fine start after Curry splits the fairway. Mickelson then busts out his driver and lets the group know, “I wouldn’t normally hit driver here but I just want to set the tone,” and cuts the corner of the dogleg left opener, but finds the rough. Barkley then takes iron and hits a perfect draw into the fairway, but it’s well back meaning they decide to use Mickelson’s shot.

Manning pulls his approach ever so slightly to the fringe of the green, but ensures Curry will get a birdie look from around 20 feet. Mickelson tells Barkley the shot is 70 yards as he’s worried about pace through the rough. It’s actually 55 yards. Mickelson math backfires and Barkley hits it through the green to the back fringe leaving about 70-feet.

“I won’t do that to you again,” the TOUR star is forced to say to his teammate.

Mickelson lags it down to six-feet giving Curry a chance to win the hole, but his effort comes up well short.

“I don’t recall Tiger leaving you five-footers,” Mickelson chirps to Manning referencing the previous Capital One’s The Match where Tiger Woods and Manning bested Mickelson and Tom Brady 1up.

Barkley leaves his par putt on the high edge and lips out but Manning makes no mistake and an early lead is established.

Hole Result: Curry / Manning WIN
Hole Scores: Curry / Manning – Par; Mickelson / Barkley – Bogey
Match Score: Curry / Manning 1up Mickelson / Barkley