Justin Rose hopes Tony Jacklin can be his “lucky charm” again as he bids to end another of his English compatriot’s records.
Rose became the first English US Open champion in 2013 since Jacklin way back in 1970.
Now he aims to be the first Englishman to win The Open in England since Jacklin in 1969 at Royal Lytham.
“I like those stats because he was the last person to win the US Open – maybe Tony is my good luck charm,” smiled Rose.
Rose hasn’t played competitively for two weeks to prepare for this week’s event at Royal St George’s in Kent.
Rose, 40, the world No.47, says his build up has given the chance for some niggling injuries to heal.
The European Ryder Cup ace missed the cut at the US Open last month.
But he has previously had top ten finishes at both the Masters and US PGA Championship this year.
Now Rose is hoping to improve on his tied second place at the Open at Carnoustie in 2018 and is itching to play following last year’s cancellation due to Covid-19.
He aims to catch alight like at Augusta earlier this year where his storming first round seven-under-par included seven birdies and an eagle.
Rose, who famously came tied fourth as a teenage amateur at Royal Birkdale in 1998, said: “I am ready to go.
“Coming back to play in front of an Open home crowd will be brilliant.
“We haven’t had an Open for two years so it will be pretty special.
“My focus is the Majors this year and I have had two weeks off before all of them.
“That has been my strategy this year and is Covid-related as well.
“It is hard to come in and do all the necessary preparations the week of the event.
“So it has worked well.
“The US Open was a bit of a strange one.
“I felt decent and well prepared but it didn’t work out.
“But Augusta I was right up there for most of it.
“Even the PGA Championship, I had 15 birdies on the weekend.
“I am showing enough good stuff.
“I feel like my game inherently is there.
“I need to find consistency and a little bit more.
“But I am showing some of those types of rounds where I am having eight or nine birdies.
“There are some encouraging signs.”
Rose came tied 44th on 11-over par in 2011 the last time The Open was in Kent.
But he feels the latest changes to the course have since made Royal St George’s fairer.
He explained: “I came down here last week and spent a couple of quiet days.
“For the first time ever I really started to love Royal St George’s.
“The subtle changes they have made to the golf course in the last few years have been brilliant.
“Some of the greens are a little bit bigger and essentially they have shortened the golf course.
“They have brought the front of the green towards the tee area but more importantly made it a little wider off the tee.
“Which I think with all the wet weather we have had and the rough being so thick, I think is a good combination.
“If you do hit a poor tee shot you are going to be in trouble and struggle.
“But at the same time because the fairways here are undulating, in the past I think a lot of players have felt you can hit a decent tee shot and still be in trouble.
“I think it is a lot fairer this year and I have really enjoyed it.”