Rickie Fowler shoots brilliant 67 to move into contention
By Bernie D'Amato under US Open
Closing the gap. ©USGA/Darren Carroll.

Closing the gap. ©USGA/Darren Carroll.

Rickie Fowler was the first player to break par on a difficult day at Pinehurst No. 2. Fowler’s three-under 67 brought him to three-under for the tournament, currently four strokes behind Martin Kaymer.

In April, Rickie finished T5 at the Masters, which was his best finish at a major since he finished T5 at the 2011 British Open. His success is welcomed by many in the golfing community who are ready to see the 25-year-old win tournaments on a regular basis.

Fowler’s work with swing instructor Butch Harmon has helped his game, and when he gets the putter going, he is one of the best players in the game. In the third round, Fowler had 24 putts en route to a 67, which tied Erik Compton for the lowest score of the day.

Rickie’s round included five birdies and two bogeys. He said he did a good job of limiting his mistakes, “Very, very pleased with today’s work. Swing-wise, I didn’t drive it very well today but kept it in play and stayed out of trouble when I could. Kind of minimized mistakes when I was in trouble, and actually made some good swings in bad spots. One was behind the green on 9. I had a good look for par from about 18 feet and just accepted bogey. I had to do that a couple of times. But other than that, made some really good iron swings, and got up and down when I needed to.”

Fowler is pleased to be in contention (T2), and once the third round is over, he will be within striking distance of Martin Kaymer, “I look at it as similar to what Bubba was doing at the Masters. He was so far out in front that you can’t focus on him. I can put myself in contention with the rest of the group, and see what Martin does. If he goes out and posts double digits, it’s going to be impossible for us to catch him. It’s like a second tournament going on. See what Martin does. He’s obviously on top of his game and playing well.”

2014 U.S. Open leaderboard.

 –Bernie D’Amato