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Stricker's putting woes ahead of U.S. Open
At the age of 45, Steve Stricker's major hopes are starting to slowly edge away, making this weeks U.S. Open perhaps one of the most important in the Wisconsinite's career.

The man know as Mr. September has not had a May to remember leading up the championship, with uncharacteristic problems on the green.

"The last month has been a little unlike what I've been doing the last five or six years," Stricker told media on Tuesday.

"I just haven't been able to get the ball in the hole really as well as I have been over the last few years. But otherwise I'm hitting the ball fine, so I'm looking forward to this week.

"I put a lot of time in chipping and putting (practice) at home and I'm trying to get that a little bit straighter in my mind. Hopefully I'll put it all together this week. I enjoy the course. I love being here."

A return to San Francisco's Olympic Club course, where he tied for fifth in 1998, could be the tonic Stricket needs.

"Besides the last month or so, I've been playing fairly smart, but the last month has been a little different. I've thrown some shots away and really not taken care of my game the way I normally do.

"So hopefully with what's on the line this week I'll be a little bit sharper mentally and get things going."

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