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Play was suspended for several hours and despite Phil Mickelson's best efforts of persuasion, 54-hole leader, Paul Casey, had - had enough and play was called for the day as darkness fell, with the final pair having just a couple of holes to play.

Resuming again after the delay has not affected momentum for the final group, with England veteran Casey and Mickelson tied at 16-under-par.

Mickelson hit 7-iron to 8 feet on the par-3 17th and played it safe down the par-5 18th, making a 6-foot birdie for a three-shot victory. "But I wanted to try to finish tonight because I'm playing well".

Instead, he had to return early Monday morning to complete his 44th PGA Tour victory, claiming a fifth AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am while also becoming the eighth-oldest victor in PGA Tour history. "Sometimes I get in my little bubble and don't see the bigger picture".

"I get exactly where Paul's coming from", Mickelson said. "It's a totally different golf course".

Mickelson's win at Pebble marks the third time in the last four years that he's finished in the top two.

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The final pairing will return at 8am on Monday, with Casey facing a short par putt at the 16th to stay at 15 under.

"It's been a treat this week", said Casey, who had entered this week with two weeks of rest after a tie for second at the Singapore Open on the Japan Tour.

Mickelson and Casey were waiting to tee off when clouds moved in quickly moved in, and rain turned into hail that pounded umbrellas, many of them held sideways to account for the wind.

Expanding on why he felt his performance at Pebble Beach boded well for Augusta, the three-time Masters victor said: "The two areas that you have to be at your best to play well at Augusta are you've got to hit the ball long and have a really good short game and those were two areas that were very helpful here".

At 18, Mickelson put the ball in the fairway twice, and dropped his approach six feet from the cup to set up his final birdie putt. Mickelson poured it on, showing his skills have not deteriorated a bit at age 48, controlling spin beautifully to back pin positions.

Asked in a greenside interview what the performance did for his confidence, Mickelson said: "Absolutely nothing, because it's nothing like the course we'll see. In all honesty, it's a good thing to play the last two holes in fresh conditions". He birdied five of the first seven holes in a bogey-free round. Jason Day (68) and Kim Si-woo (68) were two strokes further back on 13-under 274.


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