AUGUSTA, Ga. – While Phil Mickelson’s performance at the Masters seemingly came out of nowhere, Justin Rose’s performance should’ve been more of a surprise because of how poorly he’s been playing this season.
Rose is a world-class player, ranked No. 8 in Official World Golf Ranking, has won a U.S. Open and a World Golf Championship, so it doesn’t seem like a surprise to see him pop up on the leaderboard of a major championship, especially a major where he’s collected three top-10 finishes.
Before this week, however, Rose had played in seven tournaments, but hadn’t finished inside the top-10 once and had missed three cuts.
This week, a second-place tie with Mickelson, only four shots behind Jordan Spieth, was a step in a positive direction.
“It’s a good momentum starter for me,” Rose said. “I tried to really tell myself that this year for me is going to be about April to September when the big tournaments come around and that’s when I want to play well.”
Rose pointed to Rory McIlroy’s performance last season and one he wants to emulate. McIlroy was criticized for playing poorly early in the year (especially during second rounds on Fridays) but he rebounded nicely and won two major championships and a World Golf Championship event. Rose wasn’t necessarily worried that he hadn’t been playing well, but is pleased that the poor play seems to be behind him.
“I haven’t had a lot of experience this year or positive vibes on which to draw,” Rose said. “I was really pleased with how comfortable I felt in that situation today, last group in the Masters on Sunday. I think that’s when you learn a lot about yourself and that makes me very hungry to get there again very soon.”