Monday, 27 February 2017

It Was the Power of the Putter for Rickie Fowler

I have to admit, I was awfully pleased to see Rickie Fowler close the deal at the Honda yesterday. He's a great kid with a terrific attitude. Jack Nicklaus, whose wife, Barbara, has "adopted" Rickie and acts as his Florida mom, couldn't help but rave on air about what a fine kid Rickie is. And did I mention that he went to the Olympics and had a great time?

It wasn't even close in the end; not because Rickie didn't make it interesting with a couple of balls in the water. It wasn't close in the end because none of the also-rans could mount a charge in the difficult conditions, with swirling winds, sometimes upwards of twenty miles per hour. Only Jonny Vegas was able to go low early with a terrific 64. But he was too far back to challenge, eventually finishing tied for fourth.

And ultimately, as it often is, it was the "power of the putter" that kept any wolves at bay for Rickie. When things were starting to look bad, and his ballstriking was shaky, Rickie drained a couple of long birdie putts and was able to come home with plenty of shots to spare. You can get away with some iffy ballstriking if you can putt. That putter covers a multitude of sins. Three of these and one of those still makes four, as the great Walter Hagen said. 

It's worth noting that Rickie never missed a putt inside seven feet for four rounds. That, my friends, is rolling your rock. Well done, Rickie.