Justin Rose is back in the same position he was a week ago heading into Saturday’s third round of the AT&T National. He once again is atop the leaderboard, but this time around, he can only he hope he doesn’t experience the same result…a meltdown on Sunday.
Rose posted the best score of the tournament, a 6-under 64, and played a bogey free round to give him a one shot lead over Jason Day and Charlie Wi at Aronimink Golf Club. He played his second round with Sean O’Hair and J.B. Holmes who combined for 13 birdies and just one bogey on the day. He showed up for the AT&T National on Monday and knows one day, one like his round on Sunday, is not a habit former and will need to stay focused to get the win.
“I turned up here Monday morning feeling like I was a better player than I was on Sunday, because you learn,” he said. “My game doesn’t go away overnight. You have an experience like that, and if you ask yourself the right questions and if you deal with it in the right way, you become better.”
Rose played well on Friday, especially on his approach shots to the green. He never faced a par putt longer than five feet and nailed a 30-foot birdie putt on the 17th to take the lead.
“Obviously, you have a day like today where everything goes your way and it’s easy to think, ‘Well, this course isn’t that difficult.’ But you just need to really keep your patience around here,” Rose said. “I think nothing really changes tomorrow.”
Tiger Woods, the winner of this tournament last year at the Congressional, played well for the second straight day. However, missed opportunities such as missed 30-inch putt late in the round put him back at 70. Woods barley made the cut and sits at 3 over for the tournament. His collapses on the greens will need to change is he wants to find himself in good position heading into Sunday.
“I’m driving it on a string right now, and that’s fun,” Woods said. “But if you don’t make putts, no matter how good you hit the golf ball, you’re not going to shoot good scores.”
Rose is favored by PGA sportsbooks heading into Saturday to win the AT&T National with odds set at 10/3. Day has his set at 13/2 while Wi is at 10/1. Robert Allenby, who is at 3-under for the tournament, has his odds set at 12/1.