It's tough to feel too badly for a guy who has won 10.6 million dollars, albeit without a PGA Tour win. Still, it was nice to see a nice guy, Justin Rose, punch his first stateside winner's ticket in the 2010 Memorial. His 66 today was the round of the day by two strokes and blew him past 3rd round leader Rickie Fowler who's 73 left him at -15, three off Rose's pace. The battle of the Rickys(ies) was a dead heat with Ricky Barnes carding the same 73 as Fowler. That gave him a tie for 3rd at -12 with Bo Van Pelt, who shot 69. Trailing at -11 was the trio of Phil Mickelson, Tim Petrovic, 74, and Ryan Moore with a nice final round 68. Final Full Field Scores.
Rose began his charge by birdieing 4 of 5 holes on the front nine to catch Fowler. Fowler contributed to Rose's rise by bogeying 10 and doubling 12. Barnes paid his homage as well with a double on 12 and a bogey on 13. After that it was basically fairways and greens for Rose who answered the pressure and came home with a comfortable cushion. Rose seems on the brink of a stretch of winning golf with a revamped swing and posture. His swing appears effortless with few moving parts. He's obviously improved his conditioning and has the elements to compete on the biggest stages. For a guy that's just 29 it seems he's been around for much longer, having caught our attention in the Open Championship as a precocious 19 year old. His certainly paid his dues since, having risen from the depths of despair, at one point missing 17 consecutive cuts in his pro career. You have to learn how to win at this level and pay your dues in failed attempts. Rose got his just reward today and Fowler contributed to his experience bank. That's generally how it works.
Most of the top players used The Memorial as their US Open at Pebble Beach tune-up. Expect next week's St. Jude Classic to be a glorified Nationwide Tour event. A number a today's participants will turn around and have to play tomorrow in a 36 hole US Open qualifier. Hard to feel too bad for them however as I spend my 11 hour day running a big box retail store. Hey, where I went to school there was no golf team.