Will Justin Rose Rise Again at 2008 British Open?

Justin Rose will forever have wonderful memories of Royal Birkdale, where he made a sensational impact as an amateur in the 1998 British Open Championship. Rose had a fourth place finish, just one stroke behind Tiger and just two behind Mark O’Meara and Brian Watts. O’Meara went on to win in a playoff. Rose’s 45-yard pitch into the hole for birdie at his last hole is considered one of, or the most memorable, shot in British Open history.

In the ten years following, Rose has had his struggles, but he is now a contender for any tournament including this years 2008 British Open Championship.

“Obviously this place has a lot of wonderful memories for me” Rose said during his Birkdale press conference. “I’ve enjoyed my time here this week. I’ve enjoyed my practice rounds and the course itself. I’ve really enjoyed the whole vibe of the tournament so far.”

Over the last decade there have been lots of articles written about Rose, both good and bad. His game took some time to develop and there were lots of expectations. “I was turning pro after the Open whatever happened because I had done what I wanted to achieve in the amateur game. My dad, my family and advisers al thought it would take me three years to get established on the European Tour, and that turned out to be remarkably accurate. But meantime I think my own expectations and those of others had changed and that became a bit of a burden. At the same time a lot of doors were opened for me to gain valuable experience, and some tough lessons were learned as well. But I’ve come through a stronger person, and hopefully a better player.”

As for the 2008 Open Championship, Rose says he’s happy with his strategy and the game plan he has for the course. After playing a full round on Monday and Tuesday he had a short outing today to sharpen his short game. “This week is all about me going out and trusting my game and the fact that I’ve matured a lot – and going out there with the intent to do it, rather than hope to do it as I did in ‘98.” (Source: opengolf.com)

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