Mickelson, McIlroy discuss very different 2013s

Golfers Phil Mickelson of the U.S. (R) and Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland attend a photo call for...

Golfers Phil Mickelson of the U.S. (R) and Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland attend a photo call for the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament on the Bund in Shanghai October 29, 2013. (REUTER/Aly Song)

Tim McKay, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:58 PM ET

Confidence.

It’s a fleeting commodity that is hard to find and easy to lose.

On Tuesday, two players who have every reason to be confident in their abilities on the golf course gave us a window into just how fragile the psyche can be.

The 2013 season went very differently for Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy and both men, speaking at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship where they will tee it up this week, pinpointed July in Scotland as watershed moments in their year.

They were playing in the same group for the first two rounds at Muirfield Golf Links in Gullane, Scotland, but they couldn’t have been in more different frames of mind as they walked the fairways of the difficult links course.

McIlroy was 24, his career already astonishing with a pair of major victories in the two years prior. But 2013 hadn’t been the same, as he struggled with new equipment and legal battles away from the golf course.


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