Phil Mickelson to skip his early season favourites

Veteran American golfer Phil Mickelson has announced that he will be skipping two of his favourite events on the West Coast in order to spend more time with his family.

The 42 year old announced on his personal website that he will be opting out of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, scheduled for the second week of February for the first time in 21 years. He will also sit out of the Northern Trust Open the following week. Mickelson has a win and two runners-up slots at the event in the past eight years.

Writing on his website, Mickelson said that these are two of his favourite events, two of his favourite courses. But he mentioned that with his two kids in different schools with different spring breaks, he will be taking that time off. Phil Mickelson added that the tournament organisers have accommodated his schedule for long enough over the years and it is time that he accommodated their schedule.

Mickelson has skipped the World Golf Championship Match Play because it conflicted with his kids' schedule over the past five seasons but it has now been moved to early May. He has played on the event at Pebble Beach every year since 1995 and he is a four time winner there as well, the most recent win coming in 2012.

Phil Mickelson plans to play three consecutive weeks to open the charge for the new season. He will be making his debut for 2015 with the Humana Challenge, followed by the Phoenix Open and the Farmers Insurance Open.

He said that he absolutely loves the format as it gives him a full week away from the game, a full week to prepare for the upcoming events and playing three weeks in a row means he will get into an early rhythm as well.