Tiger Woods and Rickie Fowler will be paired together today for just the second time in a final round. The two were paired together last year on Sunday at the Memorial Tournament, won by woods. Fowler posted 84. The only other Woods/Fowler pairings came in rounds one and two of the 2012 Players Championship and again earlier this season in the first two rounds of the Farmers Insurance Open.
Of his seven Arnold Palmer Invitational wins, this week’s defending champion has held at least a share of the 54-hole lead six times. In second place in 2009, Woods trailed Sean O’Hair by five strokes, but won by one of O’Hair.
In search of his second career PGA Tour win (2012 Wells Fargo Championship), Rickie Fowler posted three birdies on each nine en route to a 5-under 67. He will begin Sunday’s final round two strokes back.
Fowler is making his seventh start of the season this week, with both top-1o finishes, T6s, coming in back-to-back starts at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions and Farmers Insurance Open. Fowler posted rounds of 77-65 in the first two rounds of the Farmers Insurance Open, where he was paired with Woods.
Fowler is considered by many to be one of the up and coming future stars of the PGA Tour. During Tiger’s absence from the PGA Tour, while recovering from personal issues and injury, it was Fowler who was among the select few PGA Tour newcomers to assume the media spotlight.
Ultimately for Fowler to realize his potential he’s going to have to slay the dragon. Trailing by two with one round to play, on a golf course Woods has already won 7 times, provides Fowler yet another opportunity to cement himself among golf’s top young stars.