AUGUSTA, Georgia (Reuters) - Here’s a quick quiz question. Without doing an Internet search, who finished second at the 2015 Masters?
While Jordan Spieth was making history by matching the Masters record score on his way to a four-stroke victory for his maiden major, Justin Rose quietly picked up second-place crumbs with Phil Mickelson. If you call $880,000 crumbs.
Rose has returned to Augusta National in solid though unspectacular form, but said you can throw out the form book. He has not come to finish second again.
“I feel all of my backroom work has been fantastic and my preparation has been coming along nicely,” the 35-year-old Englishman told reporters on Tuesday.
Rose loves Augusta, but he has not quite conquered it despite making the cut in all 10 of his appearances.
"You begin to develop that relationship with the course, the venue, the feel, the tournament, and it’s somewhere I feel very, very comfortable," he said.
"I’ve had a lot of good rounds here. Last year I was able to put four together in a row. I take a lot of confidence from that.
"If you get beaten by a better guy on the week, you tip your cap but I know what I was able to do last year tells me I’ve got what it takes to win the tournament.”
Even without a green jacket, the 2013 U.S. Open champion at least has one major title under his belt, which he believes eases the pressure because it spares him from a certain line of questioning.
"It is very difficult to face questions all the time about being the best player not to win a major," Rose said.
"There’s enough pressure trying to win these without trying to justify your great play and your billing in the game."
Editing by Larry Fine