Golf: Rahm strong in pursuit of number one
LA JOLLA, United States, Jan 27, 2018 (BSS/AFP) – Jon Rahm’s six-under
par 66 left him one shot behind 36-hole leader Ryan Palmer on Friday and
within striking distance of a second straight Farmers Insurance Open crown
and the world number one ranking.
The 23-year-old Spaniard is thriving in the first pro title defense of his
“You know, it’s really fun to be the last person that won here and be
playing good again and have a chance to go back-to-back,” said Rahm, who had
six birdies without a bogey on the Torrey Pines North Course, where Palmer
carded a five-under par 67.
Palmer closed eagle-birdie to grab the lead with a 36-hole total of 133.
Rahm, meanwhile, did most of his damage early, teeing off on 10 and
opening with back-to-back birdies.
He was four-under for the round through eight holes, and added two more
birdies in his last three holes.
“I had the putter really hot on the first nine holes,” Rahm said. “I made
a lot of really good putts, four for birdie and par, but my short game kept
me alive today.”
Some six holes in, Rahm said, his swing “started feeling a little iffy off
“I wasn’t hitting it in the fairway, not comfortable, and I was able to
save some great pars out there today. Then I kind of pulled it back again on
the last few holes.”
Rahm arrived at Torrey Pines last year ranked 137th in the world.
His first US PGA Tour victory pushed him into the top 50 and he followed
with victories at the Irish Open and the DP World Tour Championship.
His victory on Sunday in the CareerBuilder Challenge saw him overtake
Jordan Spieth for number two in the world, and he said it’s “humbling” to
think he has the number one ranking in his sights.
“I’m just trying to keep going and trying to keep playing good golf,” Rahm
said. “What happens will happen, but so far I’m trying to focus on one round
at a time.”