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Mickelson wins Masters for third time

Mickelson celebrates his birdie putt on the 18th as he claims his third Masters title.
Mickelson celebrates his birdie putt on the 18th as he claims his third Masters title.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Phil Mickelson claims his third U.S. Masters crown with closing 67 at Augusta
  • Mickelson finishes three shots clear of England's Lee Westwood on 16-under
  • Tiger Woods battles to a three-under 69 to tie for fourth with KJ Choi
  • Woods says he will take time off before deciding on his next tournament appearance

(CNN) -- An emotional Phil Mickelson donned the Green Jacket for the third time after a three-shot victory over England's Lee Westwood to claim the Masters crown at Augusta National on Sunday.

The world number three took command of the tournament on the back nine to pull clear of last-day partner Westwood and a clutch of other contenders with a final round 67.

He capped his victory by rolling home a birdie putt on the 18th and celebrated by hugging his wife Amy, who has been battling breast cancer.

Blog: Masters win could spark golden year for Phil

"It's been an emotional year and I'm very proud of my wife and the struggle she has been through," he told CBS.

It's been an emotional year and I'm very proud of my wife and the struggle she has been through
--Phil Mickelson
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"To come out on top in this tournament is very emotional, one of the best things we have gone through," added the 39-year-old.

Mickelson finished on 16-under 272 with Westwood, who struggled from tee to green, but battled to a 71 for 13-under 275.

American Anthony Kim had set the clubhouse pace with a storming seven-under 65 for 12-under.

Tiger Woods finished tied for fourth on 11-under with Korea's KJ Choi after a final round 69, capped by a last-hole birdie.

But his chances of a 15th major crown and a dream comeback after a self-imposed exile from competitive golf were ruined by a poor start which saw him drop three shots in the first five holes.

The world number one recovered brilliantly to move back into contention, but a sorry three-putt from close range at the 14th effectively ended his title challenge.

Woods was clearly unhappy with his performance as he spoke with CBS after his round.

"I only enter events to win, I didn't get it done," he said.

The world number one also refused to reveal when would resume play on the regular PGA Tour.

"I'm going to take a little time off and re-evaluate things," he added.

Woods' re-emergence after a five-month absence following his admission of extra-marital affairs had dominated the build-up to the first major of the season.

But with the spotlight off him, Mickelson played some of the best golf of his career, particularly on the back nine of his third and fourth rounds.

An incredible eagle-eagle-birdie burst on day three lifted him to within a shot of Westwood by the end of the round and he worked his magic again on the 13th on the last day as he pulled clear.

Blocked out by the trees for his approach, he conjured up a miracle shot to set up an eagle chance which he missed.

Westwood matched his birdie to stay two back, but a further birdie on the long 15th by the world number three gave him a three-shot lead.

Westwood pulled to within two with a brave birdie on the 17th before Mickelson finished in the style of a champion for his first major triumph since the 2006 Masters.

Fred Couples, the 1992 Masters winner trying to become the oldest major winner at age 50, moved into contention on the front nine but had to settle for a 70 and a creditable tie for sixth on 279.