AUGUSTA, Ga. – Two of the four Golf Boys are on a collision course at Augusta National.
Rickie Fowler rebounded from a second-round 75 with a 67 on Saturday to move into contention at the Masters. He is at 3 under, within striking distance of third-round leader Bubba Watson, who along with Hunter Mahan and Ben Crane made up the faux pop band Golf Boys.
“We would enjoy throwing blows at each other, but he already has a green jacket. It’s my turn,” Fowler smiled.
Fowler, whose work with new swing coach Butch Harmon is starting to click following top-10 finishes at the WGC-Match Play and last week’s Shell Houston Open, had not played his best golf at Augusta National, finishing outside the top 25 in his first three starts. But he showed signs earlier this week that he was poised for a breakthrough.
On Tuesday, Fowler teamed – or carried depending on who one asks – with Phil Mickelson to boat race Jason Dufner and Dustin Johnson in the traditional practice-round match.
“He went on a tear,” Mickelson said on Tuesday. “He shot 30 on the front nine; he eagled 13, he birdied 17 and 18, threw another one on 15. Just played remarkable golf.”
Fowler said he shot 8 under on Tuesday, giving him four rounds of 64-71-75-67 for a 277 total. That would have won the last two Masters, a fact not lost on the 25-year-old.
“It’s about time I step up and start playing well on the weekend, especially at the majors,” he said.