Rose misses PGA Tour record

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Justin Rose missed a 14-foot birdie putt on No 18 for a US PGA Tour record, settling 12-under 60 on Thursday in the Funai Classic at Disney.

Updated: February 25, 2007 11:37 IST
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Justin Rose missed a 14-foot birdie putt on No 18 for a US PGA Tour record, settling 12-under 60 on Thursday and a four-stroke lead in the Funai Classic at Disney. Rose still set course and tournament records, but just missed equalling the tour record of 59 shared by Al Geiberger (1977), Chip Beck (1991) and David Duval (1999) The 26-year-old Englishman dropped his putter, put his hands on his knees and dropped his head after missing his birdie attempt. He paused, looked up and managed a wry smile. "I did everything right to shoot 59,'' Rose said. "All I wanted to do was have a putt at 59.'' Rose hit a 6-iron from 190 yards on the 433-yard 18th. The ball bounced 6 inches from the hole, rolled past and stopped near the fringe. Rose tipped his hat several times as he walked toward the green and couldn't stop smiling. He lined up the putt from both sides, took two practice swings, then pulled it just left. Best round After his initial reaction, he tapped in for his best round ever on the American tour, three shots better than his previous low set in the 2002 Deutsche Bank Championship and matched in the 2004 Canadian Open. "You never know if you're going to get that putt again,'' he said. Richard Johnson was alone in second place, four shots back. Tag Ridings, Steve Flesch, Bob Tway, Charles Howell III and JJ Henry were five strokes behind Rose. Howell's 65 may have been the most impressive considering he played the much tougher Magnolia Course. The others, including Rose and Johnson, played the Palm Course - the easiest course on tour last year by nearly a full stroke. Chances missed Howell will play the Palm in the second round on Friday, while Rose and the rest of the leaders move to the Mag, which played about a stroke and a half tougher than the Palm on Thursday. "I would much rather have Justin's position right now,'' Howell said. "But I'm not complaining with where I am.'' Rose started his record round with three straight birdies. He got even hotter with six consecutive birdies beginning at the par-5 seventh. At 10 under and heading to No 13, Rose turned to his caddie and said, "A 59 is on the card here.'' He needed three birdies over the final holes to make history. He gave himself chances, too, when he nearly hit the flag with shots on the final four holes. But he missed two good chances to go lower and two-putted each of the four par 5s.(AP)

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