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March 21 2012

9:24 PM

Rose nears end of marathon stretch

By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM

ORLANDO -- When Justin Rose tees it up on Thursday at Bay Hill, he'll be playing in his sixth straight PGA TOUR event.

The results have been pretty impressive, too. The Englishman finished 13th or better in three of his four stroke play events -- including a win at the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship and a tie for fifth at The Honda Classic.

Rose acknowledged Wednesday that maintaining his focus has been a bit of a challenge. Granted, that first-round loss at the Accenture Match Play Championship might as well have been a week off but Rose quickly worked his way back into contention at PGA National the following week before winning at Doral.

Maybe that 27-hole stretch during the middle of last week's Transitions Championship where Rose says his game "went AWOL" was understandable, after all. He ended up in a tie for 29th at Innisbrook and then played in the Tavistock Cup on Monday and Tuesday.

Now, Rose is looking for a way to “kick it into gear for four more rounds” at the Arnold Palmer Invitational before taking a well-deserved break.

"I had two weeks where I guess you're using up a lot of mental energy," Rose said. "But it's as much the physical side right now, too. ... I have not played more than three in a row for the last couple years, and the reason I decided to play so many was I felt my game was good and I felt all the courses suited me and I felt like I wanted to chase down a win and chase down a good start to the season."

Mission accomplished. This week is a home game for the Englishman, who is raising his family in the Orlando area. And Rose, who tied for third at Bay Hill a year ago, is looking forward to a chance to "recharge the batteries" next week prior to the Masters.

"I feel like I'm in the fortunate position where going into Augusta, I'm not trying to do anything different with my game," Rose said. "I feel like I've got all the shots right now. So it's not a case of having to prepare really hard. It's about going there mentally fresh I think. So I will keep practicing and really working on my short game more than anything. But I'll be focusing on the recovery side."

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