BOSTON (CBS) — In February, Tom Brady became the oldest player to ever win a Super Bowl. On Sunday, Phil Mickelson became the oldest golfer to ever win a major tournament.
It’s no surprise, then, that two world-famous superstars live in a mutual admiration society.
Mickelson sat down for an interview with ESPN after his captivating finish at the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island on Sunday, and he was asked if any important people other than Brady had reached out to him. Mickelson didn’t answer the question, instead choosing to praise the 43-year-old Tom Brady for being an inspiration to him.
“So I’m very inspired by Tom Brady,” the 50-year-old Mickelson told Gene Wojciechowski. “He is actually a big motivation, because of how hard he works to be the best and to elongate his career.”
Mickelson referenced his and Brady’s loss to Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning at “The Match” last year, saying they have “unfinished business.” That’s in part due to Mickelson’s competitive edge, but also because the 50-year-old believes another day on the course with Brady would be highly beneficial and educational.
“I want to get in another match with him because spending time with him, it’s inspiring,” Mickelson said. “But it’s also, I learn a lot.”
Brady had been rooting for Mickelson throughout the weekend, celebrating the shot that Mickelson holed out from a bunker on the fifth hole by tweeting, “That’s my quarterback!!! LFG @PhilMickelson!!”
— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) May 23, 2021
After Mickelson secured the win, Brady posted on Instagram, saying the win was “inspiring for us all.”
Mickelson, who didn’t even have a top 20 finish this season and missed six cuts, said in his interview that he felt physically capable of playing at the highest level but had found it difficult to bring the required level of focus for 72 holes.
Those performances led to some doubts within Mickelson himself, but he managed to put both the physical and mental aspects together to win his first major since 2013. And in explaining it … he sounded a whole lot like Brady.
“The biggest thing that I’m going to take away is that there’s no reason why at an older age you cannot be at your best. It just takes a little more work,” Mickelson said. “And I believed it for a long time and I wasn’t getting the results. But I believed it, and I had people believe in me. It just takes a little more work.”