ONE OF the greatest compliments you can pay Justin Rose is that it comes as no surprise whatsoever when he wins another title, as he did on Sunday in the National at Congressional.
It may have been the Englishman’s first victory this season, but it kept up his run of winning a PGA Tour event every year since 2010. That is a very impressive statistic.
Rose had his fair share of hurdles to overcome, too. He trailed the leaders by three shots going into the final day but patiently worked his way to the top of the leaderboard.
Then after finding the water and bogeying the last, he didn’t panic as some might but kept his nerve to beat American Shawn Stefani in a play-off at that very same 18th hole.
Rose is a must for the Ryder Cup in September and that title goes a little further towards cementing his qualification. He is currently in the last automatic spot, something that I’m sure will please Europe captain Paul McGinley, since it would leave him with three picks intact.
Also looking very likely to make the team at Gleneagles is Jamie Donaldson, who finished one off the leaders at the BMW International Open in Germany at the weekend and is third in the European points list.
The Welshman is a really good player and it’s nice to see rookies who aren’t scared of making the team.
Donaldson didn’t quite make it into the four-man play-off, won by Paraguay’s Fabrizio Zanotti at the fifth extra hole, although Henrik Stenson did as the Swede scored his fourth consecutive top-10 finish.
A first title since his extraordinary DP World Tour Championship win in Dubai last year can’t be far off.
Just as Rose showed his class in the spotlight of a play-off, so too did Bernhard Langer. The German, who topped the Champions Tour money list in 2012 and 2013, proved he’s still got it by recovering from losing a four-shot lead to take the Senior Players Championship on a play-off.
Sam Torrance OBE is a multiple Ryder Cup-winning golfer and media commentator. Follow him on Twitter @torrancesam