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Page last updated at 14:06 GMT, Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Mickelson opts out of Euro Tour

Phil Mickelson
Mickelson lost world number two ranking to Sergio Garcia in Shanghai

Phil Mickelson will not participate in this season's Race to Dubai, but has not ruled out his future involvement.

The American, who played in last week's HSBC Champions tournament, says next year's schedule does not allow him to commit to the European Tour.

"It would be an honour for me to be part of it. It just didn't work out for me this year," the 38-year-old said.

"I do believe that it's very possible that, in the near future, it will be in my plans."

Mickelson made a strong defence of his HSBC Champions title in Shanghai last week, the first event of a European Tour season, which culminates in the 6.5m season-finale next November in Dubai.

The lucrative prize money on offer and the growing status of the European Tour has prompted a number of leading stars including Anthony Kim of the United States and Colombia's Camilo Villegas to join up for the 2009 season.

To be eligible for the European Tour, Mickelson would have to play in a minimum of 12 tournaments, which can include the four grand slams and three World Golf Championship events, and Mickelson said he would be open to taking part in the future.

"As I play more throughout the world it would be a natural fit to be part of the Race to Dubai," the three-time Major winner added.

606: DEBATE
Chris Rayner - BBC Sport

"I think that the European Tour is making great strides in their individual events. There is a high quality to the events as well as the Tour as a whole.

"But again, I'm not going to commit to doing it in 2010 because I don't know what's going to happen over the next 14 months.

"But if a couple of things happen here or there, it would help to make it all fit."

Mickelson lost his world number two ranking to Sergio Garcia at the weekend after finishing tied for eighth at the season-opening tournament in China.

He will compete in the 3.2m Singapore Open starting on Thursday, which includes Padraig Harrington, Ernie Els, Adam Scott and KJ Choi.

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