Bunker mentality the key as Rose aims for third straight win

Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:59am EDT
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By Tony Jimenez

HOYLAKE England (Reuters) - World number three Justin Rose is planning to adopt a bunker mentality in this week's British Open as he goes in search of a rare third victory in successive tournaments.

The 33-year-old Englishman followed up his triumph at the Quicken Loans National in Maryland last month by capturing the Scottish Open title at Royal Aberdeen on Sunday.

Rose believes the key to making it three wins in a row at Hoylake will be to keep away from the sand traps.

"It's important in links golf to keep the ball out of the bunkers," he told reporters on Tuesday. "They are true penalties.

"Typically if you take on the first set of bunkers you're not always rewarded because very often they are so well designed that there's the next set of bunkers at 280, 290, 300 yards so your decision is to take all of the bunkers out normally."

Ryder Cup team mate Rory McIlroy said earlier in the day that the par-fives would be the most important holes at Royal Liverpool this week and Rose agreed.

"Some of the par-fives are going to play relatively easily," said the 2013 U.S. Open winner at Merion. "If you don't make four you're actually dropping a shot.

"It's a very fair golf course. The fairways are relatively flat, the greens are relatively flat yet the trouble is there - the rough is relatively thick but nothing is extreme.   Continued...

Justin Rose of England speaks during a news conference ahead of the British Open Championship at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, northern England July 15, 2014.    REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth