Phil Mickelson freestyles hole 13 of US Open Championship

See Phil Mickelson's bizarre meltdown on the green at the U.S. Open

See Phil Mickelson's bizarre meltdown on the green at the U.S. Open

After the debacle of the 2004 US Open at Shinnecock Hills when they allowed the seventh green to die of thirst, leading to the humiliation of the best players in the world, the new USGA elite fumbled Dustin Johnson's rules troubles at Oakmont two years ago before giving Mickelson kid gloves treatment while at the same time, nearly losing control of the golf course. "His score for the hole was 10". In that situation, I was just going back and forth. I don't mean any disrespect to anyone and if that's the way it was taken, I apologise to them.

"Phil really did want to understand how the rule operates because he didn't want he said to me, 'Mike, I don't want to play in this championship if I should have been disqualified, '" Davis said.

"I've wanted to do that many times". I think he just snapped. "I know it is a two-shot penalty". I said "I'm sorry, but I've got to laugh at this". It's certainly not meant that way. "I would gladly take the two shots over continuing that display". He got himself out of the bunker, on to the greens and salvaged the whole by going for par. And as it released and went through, I thought, 'Wow, that is seriously quick'.

His playing partner, Andrew "Beef" Johnston, couldn't believe Mickelson's move.

BBC golf correspondent Iain Carter said: "It was a deliberate breach of the rules".

"USGA's John Bodenhamer says Phil Mickelson was assessed a penalty for violating Rule 14-5, but not Rule 1-2, because, "He didn't purposely stop or deflect the ball, '" Sobel wrote on Twitter".

With his ball about to roll down the slope, Lefty ran to his ball ... as it was moving ... and just gave it a whack back towards the cup, obviously missing, and then just marked his ball like nothing had happened. And Phil Mickelson, one of the legends of the sport. He then said: "This is my last U.S. Open - ever". While they properly saturated the course and made the greens much more receptive, the pin placements on Sunday left something to be desired and seemed more like practice round placements than final round of the U.S. Open placements.

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Amy Mickelson's endorsement of her husband's character came in the context of that putt, a violation of golf rules that resulted in a two-stroke violation. "He played a moving ball".

It's the U.S. Open, folks.

Said a father of four in NY and an occasional weekend golfer, "He did something stupid". In the scheme of things, I don't think it's that big a deal.

Rickie Fowler, who played with Mickelson on Sunday, said they had briefly discussed Saturday's incident.

The victor, ultimately, was Brooks Koepka, for the second year in a row; he shot 16 under par over four days.

The freakish incident inevitably caused huge controversy, with at least one fellow professional accusing the USGA of "copping out" by not disqualifying Mickelson.

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