Justin Rose is happy with his position at the U.S. Open, saying he can play with “freedom” in the final round at Pebble Beach.
The 2013 champion carded a three-under 68 on Saturday, a birdie at the last hole putting him within a stroke of leader Gary Woodland.
Rose said being second meant he could go into Sunday with “nothing to lose”.
“I’m in a great position… had a great day with Gary. He’s awesome to play with. For both of us, we are good friends, we have the same stable of management,” he said.
“From that point of view, it’s going to be a fun day. One back gives me the freedom to feel like I’ve got everything to gain, nothing to lose. It’s always a position that, it doesn’t mean I have to approach the day any differently, if I was one ahead. I’m close enough that I have to build my plan, build my round of golf, be disciplined.
“I’m not chasing, really, I’m so close to Gary that I have to go out and play my game. And I think it’s going to be dictated by the pin placements and the weather as to how aggressive you can be and what it will take to win.”
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) June 16, 2019
Rose mixed five birdies with two bogeys in the third round despite hitting just nine greens in regulation.
The Englishman, who needed only 23 putts during his round, said he had taken a step forward in terms of his ball-striking.
“Maybe a one-click improvement. I don’t know about my stats. My stats probably aren’t great, hitting fairways, hitting greens,” Rose said.
“But I hit more quality golf shots. I did the right thing with the golf ball on a couple of occasions. You think, ‘Okay, that’s closer’.
“So hopefully we can hit a couple more tomorrow. But I think [it’s] going [in] the right direction.”