Bubba Watson became the just the third left-handed winner of the tournament last year. Mike Weir was the first left-handed player to win at Augusta National Golf Club in 2003, but he, Mickelson and Watson have combined to win five of the past 10.
“Well, I think we are certainly cooler,” Mickelson said of the left-handers. “There are certain holes when we play Augusta National that actually do favor one side of the ball standing on it over the other based on shot dispersion. A hole like No. 12, based on shot dispersion for me, where as I stand up there as a left-handed player, if I pull a shot and aim at the middle of the green, it’s going to long right or short left which is exactly the way that green sits. It’s opposite of a right-handed shot dispersion, which is why it’s such a difficult hole in the past. If you aim at in the middle of the green and you pull it, it goes long left for a right-handed player, you know, in trouble, or short right in the water. So you have to hit a perfect shot there.
“But conversely, 16 plays the exact opposite. It’s probably the hardest shot for me on the golf course where the average, a right-handed player can aim at the middle of the green, and if he pulls it, he’ll still carry the water and take that out of play. If he comes out of it right, a lot of times it’ll be short right and catch that swale and still come down and you have a good chance for par. Whereas, for me, short left is in the water and long right is up top. So shot dispersion does make the golf course play differently what side of the ball you stand on; however, it seems to be a very equal test. It seems to me that there are holes that favor one side, while there seem to be an equal number of holes that favor the other.”