UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Winning the 2013 U.S. Open gave Justin Rose a massive confidence boost in his ability to handle pressure and he believes it is only a question of time before he claims a second major crown.
The English world number five has landed two more victories on the PGA Tour since his major breakthrough at Merion and heads into this week’s U.S. Open at the links-style Chambers Bay with his game in sparkling order.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Whether the players love or hate Chambers Bay, they will face a “comprehensive test” in firm and fast conditions at this week’s U.S. Open, says United States Golf Association chief Mike Davis.
The links-style layout, constructed on a site along Puget Sound on land formerly used as a rock quarry and also as a sand and gravel mine, was baked hard during an unusually dry and warm May, and sunny weather has been forecast for the next four days.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Twice former champion Lee Janzen will be competing in his first U.S. Open in seven years this week at Chambers Bay, having earned his spot the hard way.
The 50-year-old American booked his place in the season’s second major after leading the way in a sectional qualifier in New York eight days ago, though many of his rivals wondered why he had even bothered to tee it up as a senior golfer.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Phil Mickelson celebrated his 45th birthday at Chambers Bay on Tuesday but said he feels no sense of time beginning to run out as he continues his career-long bid to win a first U.S. Open.
The American has been a runner-up at his national championship on six occasions, most recently in 2013 when he finished two shots behind Justin Rose, and he is yearning for the chance to complete a career grand slam of the four majors.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Martin Kaymer will defend his U.S. Open title this week at Chambers Bay but is happy for players such as Masters champion Jordan Spieth and world number one Rory McIlroy to command the spotlight.
Germany’s Kaymer confirmed his status as one of the game’s very best by coasting to his second major victory, by eight shots in last year’s U.S. Open at Pinehurst, though he has since failed to replicate that commanding form.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – It has been seven years since Tiger Woods won the last of his 14 major titles and he heads into his week’s U.S. Open with his game under a glaring question mark after struggling for most of this season.
As ever, though, the former world number one preferred to dwell on the positives when he spoke to reporters on Tuesday at Chambers Bay, saying that he was happy with his tournament preparations.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Chambers Bay will not suit every player at this week’s U.S. Open but Rory McIlroy has embraced the challenge posed by a links-style venue that suits his power game and high ball flight.
The Northern Irish world number one saw the par-70 layout for the first time on Saturday and was stunned by its ‘British Open’ feel with huge sand dunes, fescue grass, undulating greens and semi-blind shots from several fairways.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – The rapid decline of Tiger Woods’ golf game has stunned his fellow players and the fans but Jason Day believes the former world number one can work his way back if he can improve his form off the tee.
Australian Day played nine holes with Woods in practice on Monday for this week’s U.S. Open at Chambers Bay and was hugely impressed by the quality of the American’s iron play and short game.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Masters champion and world number two Jordan Spieth is one of golf’s biggest drawcards, yet for many he will be playing second fiddle to his caddie at this week’s U.S. Open at Chambers Bay.
Former school teacher Michael Greller has been working as Spieth’s bagman since 2012 and, as a former Chambers Bay caddie, he is a popular figure within golf circles in this part of the Pacific Northwest.
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Washington (Reuters) – Two years ago, Hunter Mahan went into the final round of the U.S. Open at Merion just one stroke off the pace and held a share of the lead with four holes to go before falling back into a tie for fourth.
Mahan signed off with a five-over-par 75 in difficult scoring conditions, but said later that he was happy with how he swung the club, maintained composure and stayed in contention for the title on what he described as “a brutal” day.