He’s back and this time it’s personable. Putting on a half decent Scottish accent and sporting a grin that was about as wide as the Firth of Forth, Phil Mickelson went on the charm offensive here at Gullane.

He may have been lagging behind the early pace in the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open but a considerable chunk of the limelight was commandeered by a Lefty wanting to put things right.

This was a masterclass in the mea culpa and could have been accompanied by a bunch of flowers and box of Milk Tray.

And what did he have to apologise for? Oh yes, that bewildering US Open palaver where he deliberately hit a moving ball on the green during a bizarre, brazen act which brought widespread condemnation.

By all accounts, folk wanted Mickelson drowned in the village pond for heresy. Or at least tarred and feathered.

In the build up to this week’s showpiece, he refused to perform any media duties although he did explain himself by saying he’d nipped over to Paris to play the Ryder Cup course before hopping up to have a brief reconnaissance mission around Carnoustie ahead of the Open.

“ “I’m not trying to dodge anybody, I’ve been a little busy,” he said after a level-par 70 as he began to speak at length for the first time about those infamous shenanigans at Shinnecock last month.

Ever the showman, Mickelson made something of a performance of his display of contrition.

“Before we start, I’m not going to answer any questions about …,” he said as he paused for effect and then added: “my opening round today. But I’m more than happy to talk about what happened at the US Open a month ago.” It was a jovial exercise in breaking the ice that could’ve melted the polar caps.

“I made a big mistake (at the US Open) and I wish I could take it back, but I can’t,” he continued. “There’s not much I can do about it now other than just try to act a little better.

“The thing about this is throughout my career, 25 years, there have been a lot of times where I have had to be accountable for decisions I did not make. And the reason why this has actually been easier is it was my own fault.

“The backlash is my own fault. So it’s much easier to deal with than some of the times where I have not been involved in the decisions and had to deal with that.

“I do a lot of dumb stuff, right. I have these moments where I’m like in a cloud, if you will, I’m not really sure what I’m doing or I’m just kind of going through the motions and not really aware at the moment, and I’ve done that a bunch in my career.”

Mickelson had acted with shrugging, defiant nonchalance to criticism of his US Open antics but concedes, in hindsight, it wasn’t his finest hour.

“Not only was I not great on the course, I was not great after the round, either,” he said. “It was my birthday too that day. And I tend to do dumb stuff on my birthday

“At the time I was pretty angry. The way I show anger is not the traditional way like throwing clubs or berating the fans. I tend to be a little more passive aggressive in my actions.

“I have mental lapses just. It’s been throughout my whole life. It’s not new. That was just one of the worst ones.”