Rickie Fowler held no punches in crediting Phil Mickelson’s success in 2013 winning both the Scottish Open and The Open Championship in consecutive weeks for his preparation to play the week before each major so far in the 2014 season.
Taking that queue from Mickelson has been paying dividends so far for the former Oklahoma State Cowboy.
Fowler, who’s best finish in a major championship prior to 2014 was a T5 at the 2011 Open Championship, has logged back-to-back top-5 finishes in majors in 2014 after teeing it up the week before the major.
Prior to The Masters, Fowler finished sixth at the Shell Houston Open before finishing T5 at Augusta. Where his best finish prior to this season was a T27 in 2012.
In the week leading up to the US Open, Fowler again teed it up the week prior in the St. Jude Classic where he finished T13 leading in to his T2 finish at Pinehurst No. 2.
In an interview with Sportal at the Scottish Open last week, Fowler explained how he enjoyed playing the week prior to a major championship.
“The biggest thing for me is I’ve enjoyed playing the week prior, leading up to a major,” Fowler said on Wednesday.
“This year I’ve played in the first two majors and played the weeks leading up and had decent finishes, good finishes.
“(It’s about) kind of going through the checklist and making sure the game’s on point and seeing what we may need to work on for the week after.
“I think it’s been good preparation after two great finishes and we’ll see if we can go out and get a good week here and get ready for the next one.”
Fowler also explained that in growing up and learning to play golf — He learned more about ‘How’ to play the game instead of learning how to swing the club.
“I’ve definitely enjoyed playing a lot of the old style courses. I grew up learning the game from an older gentleman. Definitely more old school, didn’t grow up learning how to swing a golf club but more learning how to play the game,” said Fowler.
“I think that’s why I appreciate links golf maybe more than a lot of guys.
“In the younger generation from the US I enjoy coming over here, kind of playing the golf course, using your imagination to get around and hit different shots.
“You don’t get a whole lot of that in the US you get some of that at other courses but it’s fun for me to come over here and have fun playing golf.”
Although Fowler has only one PGA Tour win to his resume, he has shown the ability this season to step up and step his game up in the biggest tournaments.
Could Royal Liverpool be the course he breaks through for his first career major?
I for one cannot argue with the results so far in majors this season. I am not looking over Fowler this week at Royal Liverpool.