Mickelson off to good start at Match Play in Texas

Jordan Spieth hits on the second hole during round-robin play at the Dell Technologies Match Play golf tournament at Austin County Club Thursday

Mickelson was undefeated in the three rounds of group play.

The Dane will advance to the knockout stage round of 16 on Saturday after a 3-0 finish in the group while the best McIlroy can do is 2-1 even if he defeats Grillo on Friday. Thomas had a 2-up lead with five holes to play until Matt Fitzpatrick won the next four holes with birdies to win the match.

His revelations Wednesday shed more light on it.

Bill Haas provided another reminder to never count him out when he's in a hazard. Look at Rahm's second shot - whoops!

Two others had an easier time qualifying because of earlier withdrawals.

McIlroy plays what amounts to a practice round on Friday.

But after he flew her to the USA for more tests last week the prognosis was a little more positive, and she is set to undergo surgery this Friday in his home city of Columbus, Ohio.

"First, I thought I missed the ball".

Rules official Steve Carman arrived, confirmed the details and Hatton received a two-shot penalty.

QUOTEWORHTY: "I knew I had to win today".

A similar situation will send No. 8 Alex Noren of Sweden to single-elimination play on the weekend. Garcia entered the day 1-0-1 and Rahm at 2-0, meaning the victor will advance from a loaded Group 7. But they had to wait some two hours to start their sudden-death playoff. His flip wedge bounded over the green and he lost the hole.

Two other playoffs were underway.

Gary Woodland pulled out of his second round duel with McIlroy due to family reasons which gave the Northern Irishman the win.

In a text message delivered by his agent, Day says his mother is resting comfortably and that doctors are optimistic about her recovery. Day brought her to OH, where he lives with his wife and two children, for more tests that at least revealed hope.

Gary Woodland became the second player to withdraw in as many days from the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship.

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Kerr, the 2015 victor, closed with birdie-birdie. This makes six straight years Garcia didn't make it beyond the third round. His pitch rolled - and rolled - beyond the flag, off the green and into the water.

But this week was as odd as it gets for the No. 2 player in the world. He won by forfeit against Jason Day, who withdrew on Wednesday.

Knox's defeat and a victory for Bill Haas over KT Kim ensured Haas and Kim would contest a sudden-death play-off to decide the victor of group 11. Head-to-head matches do not apply in deciding who advances.

He will have the luxury of not even needing to turn up at the course on Friday, due to the absence of his scheduled opponent Woodland. That means Haas and Kim will wait almost two hours for their playoff to begin.

Despite two wins from two matches, Johnson was not guaranteed of advancing out of the group stage. Tournament officials felt it was unfair for players to warm up for a match and then have to wait some 30 minutes to tee off.

A year ago at the Match Play, he tweaked his back in the opening round and wasn't sure he would be able to continue.

Holmes had an adventure trying to salvage the third hole.

Anna Nordqvist, the 2014 Kia champion who won last weekend in Phoenix, played in the afternoon.

Still, Mickelson used a word seldom heard at Austin Country Club on Thursday.

The group is topped by Hideto Tanihara, who halved his match against Ryan Moore.

Johnson, the No. 1 seed, was 4 up with four to play against Martin Kaymer and almost drove the green with a 380-yard drive.

After Day broke through for his first major win, the 2015 US PGA Championship, he made it clear the part his mother had played in his career.

Leishman lost Thursday to Pat Perez.

But when it comes to Match Play, he wasn't alone in his misery.

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