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December 14 2011

3:33 PM

Poulter: Expect push from U.S.

The United States doesn't have a player in the top five in the Official World Golf Ranking, but Englishman Ian Poulter doesn't think the U.S. needs to worry. With a bevy of young Americans on the rise, Poulter expects the U.S. to return to form soon.

"There is some great talent coming out of the States," Poulter told reporters this week on the eve of the Australian Masters in Melbourne. "I'm not going to say they are in a slump in any way, shape or form; they have some fantastic players.

"But I think certainly in the next 18 months, two years, we will see a push from those young guys in the States."

The youngsters certainly will enter the 2012 season with some momentum. Of the 16 players in their 20s who won PGA TOUR events in 2011, 11 of them were from the U.S. – including FedExCup winner Bill Haas, runner-up Webb Simpson and Rookie of the Year Keegan Bradley.

Poulter, arguably the TOUR's snappiest dresser, especially likes the potential of another fashionable golfer -- Rickie Fowler.

Although Fowler, who turned 24 on Tuesday, has yet to win a PGA TOUR event, he did break through recently with a six-stroke win on the OneAsia Tour at the Kolon Korea Open.

"Obviously it won't take him long to start winning plenty of tournaments,” Poulter said. “He won in Asia, but he hasn't won over there. I'm sure it won't be long before he makes a hard push up the world rankings."

Fowler currently ranks 29th in the Official World Golf Ranking – just one spot behind Poulter.

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