Rusty Fowler stays positive after Abu Dhabi toil

Sat Jan 17, 2015 6:00am EST
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By Matt Smith

ABU DHABI (Reuters) - Rickie Fowler admitted he is struggling for rhythm after slumping to a third-round 73 at Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship on Saturday which left him among the tournament’s also-rans.

The American began his Middle East debut confidently, matching world number one and playing partner Rory McIlroy with a first-round five-under 67.

But a triple bogey in a second-round 75 dashed any hopes Fowler had of adding to his meager trophy haul and the 26-year-old was unable to arrest his form slump in Saturday’s third round.

“It’s just golf, it was a little rough today,” a downbeat Fowler told Reuters.

“The course is great, nothing has changed. I just got into a bad rhythm for a couple of days. I made some good swings on the last.”

Fowler, relegated to the early starters after narrowly making the cut, did little positive on the front nine, bogeying the sixth hole as he struggled to find the fairways.

He double-bogeyed the 10th, made his first birdie on 13, dropped another shot at 15 before a final-hole eagle added gloss to a tough day on the National course.

Fowler said that last putt would give him something to take into Sunday’s final round after which he will fly home to the United States to begin his build-up to April’s U.S. Masters.   Continued...

Rickie Fowler of the U.S. tees off on the third hole during the Abu Dhabi Golf championship January 16, 2015. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah