English golf fans have been made to wait almost a quarter of a century to witness one of their own hoisting the Claret Jug aloft, but approaching the 144th Open Championship there is genuine hope Sir Nick Faldo’s 1992 achievement can be emulated.
Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood have gone closest since Faldo, finishing as runner-up in 2008 and 2010 respectively, though both remain empty handed where the big four tournaments are concerned.
However, it’s the man who has just carded a pair of 66s at the Scottish Open, whose stock has risen higher than the aforementioned duo heading into majors these days.
World number seven Justin Rose bagged the 2013 US Open and has since finished within the top 25 at five of the last six majors he’s contested – ending up 27th at Chambers Bay most recently .
He’s now the 16/1 third favourite with Ladbrokes to lift the Claret Jug when the only British Major pays its 29th visit to St Andrews next week.
His top effort since the glory of Merion arrived at this year’s Masters where he finished co-second behind the imperious Jordan Spieth, with a 72-hole score of -14 that, on so many other occasions, would have earned him a Green Jacket.
Although Rose hasn’t always got to grips with rigours of The Open – his highest finish remains a tie for fourth on debut – his best placement in six attempts arrived last year after he took the Scottish Open title.
Such a commanding display on the similar terrain of the Royal Aberdeen links course clearly stood Rose in very good stead for his Open tilt at Royal Liverpool, another classic links venue.
Following on from that, the 34-year-old starred for Europe on another Scottish links course at Gleneagles, where he secured his team the most points of any individual player.
At the time of writing Rose sits just one shot off the clubhouse lead at the Scottish Open after 36, and the fact that he’s playing at a brand new venue also denotes his game really is in fine nick.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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