The 2013 champion was nicely placed on one under par for the tournament after making three birdies in a back-nine 34 and adding another at the first.
But Rose gave a shot back at the next, and he then came to grief at the seventh – the hole he had spoken about as a potential danger in his pre-tournament press conference.
“I’ve played so well really for two days, I feel like I’ve outplayed a couple of guys that I played with,” said Rose, who birdied the eighth to get back to two over but saw Masters champion Jordan Spieth and Jason Day finish five and two under respectively.
“I played really well and just got nothing out of it. I needed something to go??for me and I kind of had the opposite happen on seven.”
Rose admitted he “chunked” his second shot to the uphill par four, but was??then severely punished when his third shot narrowly failed to reach the green??and rolled back into a greenside bunker, from where he needed two shots to??escape.
“That’s not a good golf hole, let’s just be honest about it,” Rose added. “I??don’t mind the ball coming back into the bunker, but when it comes back down the??bunker on a downslope and you can’t hit a shot because you’ve got fescue grasses??hanging over the top and you can’t make a swing.
“I knew that would be the hardest hole on the course. I fully knew how??difficult that particular part of the golf course is. Shame on me for bringing??it into play with my second shot. Other than that, I played really, really well??for two days. Hit a lot of great shots and haven’t made any mid-range putts.
“I had a five-foot putt on the first today, and I said to my caddie I don’t??have the first idea what this is going to do. It felt like outdoor bingo at that??point. Early on in the round they’re in reasonable shape, but some of the bad??greens are especially bad.
“The 13th green is how fescue greens should be, and 50 per cent of the other??greens are manageable, but then the other 50 per cent are very tough to putt on.??So it can be a bit of lottery, which isn’t ideal but you just have to deal with??it the best you can.”
Meanwhile, Rose’s Ryder Cup team-mate Lee Westwood shared the view of Masters champion Jordan Spieth after both fell??foul of the flexible course set-up at Chambers Bay on Friday.
The 18th hole was played as a 617-yard par five in the first round and a??514-yard par four in the second, with the first hole a par four on Thursday and??par five on Friday to maintain a par of 70.
Spieth labelled it a “dumb hole” as a par four after carding a double-bogey??six in his 67, while Westwood was four under par for the day before taking a??triple-bogey seven to card a 69 and finish two over.
“Played great today. Shame about 18,” Westwood wrote on Twitter. “I know I??made triple but it’s a stupid par 4 and a great par 5.”
Westwood and Spieth both found sand off the tee, with the Englishman then??coming up short of the green with his third short and taking four more shots to??get down.