Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Justin Rose bids to emulate golf legend Ben Hogan

June 10, 2014 -- Updated 2122 GMT (0522 HKT)
12 months ago at Merion Justin Rose sampled the emotion of winning his first major.
12 months ago at Merion Justin Rose sampled the emotion of winning his first major.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Justin Rose defends his U.S. Open title at Pinehurst
  • Rose bidding to become first man for 25 years to repeat
  • Phil Mickelson looking to complete career grand slam
  • Tiger Woods ruled out through injury

Follow us at @WorldSportCNN and like us on Facebook

(CNN) -- Justin Rose is looking to repeat the feat of golfing legend Ben Hogan as he defends his U.S. Open title at Pinehurst's No.2 course this week.

Rose won his first major title at Merion and will be looking for a rare double success in North Carolina.

Hogan won both the 1950 and 1951 U.S. Opens with his initial victory at Merion.

Only Curtis Strange, 25 years ago, has completed two wins in two years in the tournament since Hogan's double triumph.

Rose admits that the Merion precedent has been on his mind as he contemplates his title defense which begins Thursday.

Rose bests Mickelson in U.S. Open
'Blessings in a Backpack'
How Justin Rose shines under pressure

"I've allowed myself that thought for sure," Rose told gathered reporters. "I feel like the U.S. Open test suits me.

"For me being defending champion, I don't even like that word, defending, because it puts you already behind the eight ball. You don't want to be out there being defensive at all."

Read: Emotional Rose shares boyhood dream

Rose heads a strong English contingent, which also includes Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, Luke Donald and Paul Casey, all seeking an elusive first major.

A keen football fan, he nonetheless rated their collective chances of success at Pinehurst above that of England at the World Cup in Brazil.

"I would say there's probably more chance of one of us winning the major than England winning the World Cup potentially," Rose said. "So sad to say, but."

"Blind faith that England will get far in the tournament prevails, so we'll see," Rose added.

Phil Mickelson, runner-up to Rose last year, cruelly occupying that position for the sixth time at the U.S. Open believes he is capable of another strong challenge despite indifferent form this year.

"I feel as good about my game today as I have all year," Mickelson said.

Read: Injured Mickelson skips Texas Open

"It's not saying a lot, because I haven't played well all year, but last week was a good week for me. I started to slowly put it together."

His 11th placed finish at the St.Jude Classic Sunday was his best of the season, but he went into last year's British Open at Muirfield on a similar run and triumphed in style.

Masters winner Bubba Watson is also strongly tipped to challenge for his second major of the season, but believes Pinehurst's domed greens will test his patience.

"I wouldn't say unfair. I would just say they're very difficult," he said. "When I say unfriendly it's because they're trying to beat you," he added.

Former world number one Tiger Woods is sitting out his second straight major as he rehabilitates after back surgery, with Australian Adam Scott going into the week as the top-ranked player.

Read: Woods to miss Masters

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
September 12, 2014 -- Updated 1251 GMT (2051 HKT)
It's a big dilemma: Be with your wife for the birth of your first child, or stay at work and try to earn $11 million. For Billy Horschel, it's a no-brainer.
September 12, 2014 -- Updated 1140 GMT (1940 HKT)
She's just 19 but Hyo Joo Kim is already showing she's ready for the big time after recording the lowest ever round at a major championship.
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 1706 GMT (0106 HKT)
Masters champion Bubba Watson says winning the $10 million FedEx Cup jackpot would bring forward his retirement from the game.
September 12, 2014 -- Updated 1131 GMT (1931 HKT)
EVIAN-LES-BAINS, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 15: A view of the 14th green during the third round of The Evian Championship at the Evian Resort Golf Club on September 15, 2013 in Evian-les-Bains, France. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
The world's top women golfers will be chasing a $3.25 million prize purse at one of the most stunning courses on the LPGA Tour.
September 3, 2014 -- Updated 1219 GMT (2019 HKT)
Tom Watson selects Keegan Bradley, Hunter Mahan and Webb Simpson as his wildcard picks for the Ryder Cup contest with Europe.
September 2, 2014 -- Updated 1352 GMT (2152 HKT)
Ian Poulter kept Europe clinging on in their Ryder Cup battle with the United States in Chicago.
Ian Poulter, who has constantly haunted the U.S. in Ryder Cup golf, is back after being chosen as a wildcard by European captain Paul McGinley.
August 25, 2014 -- Updated 1540 GMT (2340 HKT)
Tiger Woods has split with his longtime coach Sean Foley after not winning a major during their four-year tenure.
August 11, 2014 -- Updated 1105 GMT (1905 HKT)
Success just keeps on coming for Rory McIlroy, but the world No. 1 is already targeting more titles following his second PGA Championship win.
August 8, 2014 -- Updated 1424 GMT (2224 HKT)
From Seve's "spine-shivering" moment to Jack Nicklaus' "perfect explosion," David Cannon has captured many of golf's defining images.
August 7, 2014 -- Updated 1320 GMT (2120 HKT)
They came home as casualties of war -- physically shattered and mentally broken. But golf is proving to be an unlikely salvation for U.S. veterans.
August 5, 2014 -- Updated 1231 GMT (2031 HKT)
You are the one hitting the shots, but the man standing over your shoulder could hold the key to your golfing destiny.
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 1227 GMT (2027 HKT)
PINEHURST, NC - JUNE 10: Rory McIlroy (R) of Northern Ireland talks with his dad Gerry McIlroy (L) during a practice round prior to the start of the 114th U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club, Course No. 2 on June 10, 2014 in Pinehurst, North Carolina. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
He has been there for all three of his son's major wins, but the latest triumph may well have been the sweetest yet for Rory McIlroy's father.
ADVERTISEMENT