Funai Classic Round Two: Loads are betting Rose will wilt, but not me
Justin Rose must have been as puzzled as me when he came out in the afternoon Friday to find he was still sitting pretty atop the leaderboard. None of the early risers, least of all Charles Howell III, had much of a fight in them, which lifted some of the pressure off the Englishman. He was able to rip up the script that says a poor round follows a great one - he let Howell & Co play that role.
So who said 3-1 on Rose was cheap? I still say that was a fair verdict at the time, just as I can see a smidgeon of merit in the argument now being forcefully made that at odds-on Rose is even more of a bargain lay. As soon as his price went below evens the “lay, lay, lay” battle cry reverberated around the forums, although in many cases it was beleaguered pockets talking. As he shot his way to a six-stroke lead I thought they had taken leave of their senses. Then the bogey on his 13th hole as other late starters advanced reminded us all of Rose’s frailty.
By past standards on the Magnolia course Rose is having a modest round, since his previous average is more than five under. But he is standing on a 10ft birdie chance on the 17th when he resumes his fog-delayed round early today.
Five shots clear on a course that suits, with the wearisome pro-am stuff out of the way? And not a hugely frightening crowd battling to rein him in, despite some superlative stuff from Tag Ridings and last week’s winner Troy Matteson - two eagles in his round Friday.
It’s yours to throw away Justin and this time I’m betting you’ll keep your head enough to make it. Hope that’s not the kiss of death!
|« Funai Classic Round Three: Justin Rose is the Tim Henman of golf - discuss||Funai Classic Round One: Justin's too cheap, but don't get carried away by the "choker" tag »|
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