Tagged in: tiger woods

Tiger closes inconsistent Memorial with 4-over 76

Tiger Woods wrapped up the Memorial Tournament on Sunday with a 76 in his final round, putting him six strokes over par for the week.  

Consistency was an issue in his first official tournament since February, and he was tied for 41st place when he finished play at Muirfield Village Golf Club. He was more than 10 strokes behind leader Jon Rahm going into the clubhouse.

Woods was under par in two of his first three rounds, but he had just three birdies to go with five bogeys and a double bogey in Round 4 in Dublin, Ohio.

The round started well for Woods, opening with a birdie on the first hole thanks to a long putt.

He was accurate with his drive for the first few holes, but it was his short game that abandoned him as the round started to unravel.

A bogey on No. 4, double bogey on No. 7, and two more bogeys on No. 8 and 9 ruined any opportunity he had at a promising final round, ending up four over on the front nine.

In his defense, the problems were consistent for just about everyone playing Sunday Things got a little better on the back nine, seeing more fairways and greens in regulation. He navigated the tough conditions to earn pars before closing with a strong run on the final few holes.

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Though his work on the green was rough earlier in the day, the back-to-back birdies featured putts of 17 and 21 feet.

He also hit the fairway on 10 out of 14 drives, the most of any round this week, per PGATour.com. The closing performance should provide plenty of momentum heading forward this season.

A bogey on 18 is also excusable, as it came after a brief weather delay before he returned for his final three strokes.

This was the first PGA Tour event for Woods since the Genesis Invitational, before the campaign was suspended because of the coronavirus. Fans last saw him at Capital One’s “The Match: Champions for Charity” in May, an exhibition alongside Phil Mickelson, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning.

Regardless of the result this week, Woods saw the value in competing against the best in the world.

“Well, I think that getting back into the flow and competing again and playing at this level, I hadn’t done that in a while,” he said, per Mike Wells of ESPN. “Playing home and playing out here is so very different.” The next step is to stay healthy, particularly with his back apparently feeling stiff at times during this tournament, per Wells.

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Tiger Woods produces late birdies to make Memorial cut

Tiger Woods fought back from looking almost convinced to miss the cut at the Memorial to produce two birdies in the last three holes to survive until the weekend.

Yet as much as this great escape reminded the game of the 44-year-old’s enduring competitive spirit, for Woods, himself, this was further evidence of Father Time’s cruelty. “Ageing is not fun,” Woods said after his 76. “Early on in my career I thought it was fantastic because I was getting better and better and better. And now I’m just trying to hold on.”

In fairness, this was Woods first competitive event in five months and only his third of 2020. Rust was predictable. Except it was worrying that, after birdieing his third hole (the 12th) when hitting his tee-shot to within two feet on the 170-yard par three, he proceeded to drop six shots in the following eight holes.

Woods’s back was sore and his body language gave it away. “I wasn’t quite moving as well as I’d like and couldn’t quite turn back and couldn’t quite clear – It was a bit of a struggle,”

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Woods, the five-time Memorial champion, said. “It started this morning during the warm-up. It wasn’t quite as good as I’d like. [But] I finished birdie-birdie-par and that’s about the only positive to it today. I would like to have the opportunity to play tomorrow.”

Alongside Woods at Muirfield Village, Rory McIlroy shot a level-par 72 for two-under, five better than his playing partner.

The Northern Irishman faces a fight for the world No 1 position this weekend with Jon Rahm looming menacingly on the leaderboard on an assignment to become just the second Spaniard in history to top the rankings.

Jose Maria Olazabal never managed it and neither did Sergio Garcia, despite both winning the Masters. The late Severiano Ballesteros stands alone and as the great conquistador happens to be Rahm’s inspiration, prepare for some rich Iberian emotion should the 25-year-old climb to the summit in Ohio.

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Tiger grouped with Mcilroy, Koepka for Memorial

The head-to-head showdown many fans were hoping for this week at Muirfield Village will have to wait until at least the weekend.

Brooks Koepka will play in one of four featured groups for the first two rounds of the Memorial Tournament. However, he will not be grouped with Bryson DeChambeau, the winner in Detroit two weeks ago who has involuntarily become somewhat of a rival to Koepka.

Instead, Koepka draws the No. 1-ranked player in the world, Rory McIlroy, and five-time Memorial champion Tiger Woods, who will play on Tour for the first time since the Genesis Invitational in February.

Woods has played just three times this season, winning the Zozo Championship, tying for ninth at the Farmers Insurance Open and ending up solo 68th at Riviera. McIlroy had seven consecutive top-5s, including a victory, to start the season, but since the Tour returned from its three-month absence during the COVID-19 pandemic, McIlroy has no top-10s in three starts.

Koepka is coming off a missed cut last week at Muirfield Village and has just one top-10 this season as he continues to recover from an ‘excruciating’ injury to his left knee, which he re-injured in October after undergoing a stem-cell treatment following last year’s Tour Championship.

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DeChambeau will be grouped with last week’s Workday Charity Open winner Collin Morikawa and defending Memorial champion Patrick Cantlay.

The other two featured groups will be Justin Thomas, Dustin Johnson and Xander Schauffele, and Phil Mickelson, Justin Rose and Shane Lowry.

While Woods, McIlroy and Koepka is one heckuva draw, golf fans on Twitter had been lobbying for a Koepka-DeChambeau pairing after Koepka appeared to take a couple of shots at the bulked-up DeChambeau last week, first tweeting only a GIF of “Eastbound and Down” character Kenny Powers attacking a cameraman over alleged steroid allegations, and then telling reporters that he was going to “run the table” after committing to the Memorial late Friday, seemingly a reference to DeChambeau’s recent casino speak.

The perceived shots come after Koepka called DeChambeau out for slow play last August at The Northern Trust, causing DeChambeau to seek out Koepka’s caddie, Ricky Elliott, and tell him that he wished Koepka would make those kind of comments to his face.

The two later met on the range at Liberty National and apparently squashed the beef. Though neither player revealed what was said, less than two months later DeChambeau revealed in Las Vegas that he was going to transform his body in a quest to add speed and distance.

Nearly 40 pounds later, DeChambeau has, and two weeks removed from his victory in Detroit he finds himself ranked seventh in the world, right behind Koepka.

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Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning knocked off Phill Mickelson, Tom Brady

Rain filled the South Florida air on Sunday, threatening to make a mess of The Match: Champions for Charity at Medalist Golf Club.

Instead, four sporting icons didn’t let bad weather dampen what turned out to be an exciting, fun-filled exhibition that raised $20 million for COVID-19 relief efforts while highlighting the ups and downs of competitive golf.

Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning triumphed 1 up over Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady in Hobe Sound, Florida, but the outcome never really mattered. Mickelson trash-talked, as did announcer Charles Barkley. 

Justin Thomas, the No. 4 player in the world, dished some dirt and offered some barbs while serving as an on-course reporter. Celebrities called in and offered challenge donations. Ultimately, after $10 million was pledged by the four players and WarnerMedia previous to the match, another $10 million was raised over the course of the afternoon via online and text donations and other pledges.

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“Phil said he was nervous, so imagine us,” stated Manning, the retired two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback who is a member at Augusta National. “To go behind the ropes and get in these guys’ world and in the arena with them was really an incredible experience.

“I was not comfortable the whole time, but raising $20 million as people are going through such tough times, it’s something I’ll always remember and cherish.”

Things got off to a slow start due to the poor weather, which delayed the start by some 50 minutes.

But once the players got going, there was some excellent banter and good golf. All of the players were outfitted with custom golf carts, with cameras focused on their faces and microphones available for questions from the announcers.

Mickelson hit a few wayward shots to start, but the 44-time PGA Tour winner settled down and served as a cheerleader for Brady, trying to keep him in the game. The duo rallied on the back nine as the format shifted to modified alternate shot. Mickelson bombed a tee shot onto the short par-4 11th green, and Brady holed the eagle putt to bring them to 2 down.

“This is where it changes,” Mickelson said. He missed a good opportunity to bring the match close at the 13th but got within one hole when Manning missed a short par putt at the 14th. They could get no closer as the players proceeded in heavy rain and near darkness.

After Woods hit his tee shot in the fairway at the 18th, with Manning knocking the approach to the front of the green, all that was left was a two-putt par for the victory.

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Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning favored to defeat Phill Mickelson, Tom Brady in charity golf

The match is set, the trash-talking has started and the odds are on the board for a star-studded, 18-hole event to raise money for coronavirus relief efforts on Memorial Day weekend.

Caesars Sportsbook on Monday opened Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning as the favorites over Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady in “The Match: Champions for Charity” showdown May 24 at the Medalist Golf Club in Hobe South, Florida.

Woods and Manning were installed as -175 favorites, with Brady and Mickelson at +150 at Caesars.

The event will be televised on TNT and TBS at 3 p.m. ET. The four members will make a combined $10 million donation to relief efforts. The 18-hole match will consist of nine holes of best ball and nine holes of modified alternate shot.

Two years ago, Mickelson bested Woods in a head-to-head, made-for-TV event in Las Vegas.

Last week, in an online promotion for this year’s challenge, Mickelson ribbed Woods by showing off the trophy he conquered by defeating him in 2018. “Tiger doesn’t strike us as somebody who’s really going to get up for an event like this, for lack of a better phrase,” said Jeff Davis, director of risk for Caesars Sportsbook. “Phil kind of eats this stuff up.”

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The early betting action on the match had been even at the DraftKings sportsbook, where 60% of the bets were on Woods and Manning, while 55% of the money wagered was on the underdogs, Mickelson and Brady.

Jeff Sherman, a golf odds specialist at the SuperBook at Westgate Las Vegas, researched Brady’s and Manning’s golf matches online, watching old pro-am events they played in and videos of their swings.

“From what I could find, I believe Brady’s like an 8 handicap, and Manning’s like a 6 handicap,” Sherman said. “So, slight edge to Manning there.”

Sherman compared the handle on the 2018 event between Mickelson and Woods to how much is wagered on a “good NBA game,” but said he expects this year’s version of “The Match” to attract potentially four times as much betting interest.

“For a standout event like that, it was less than I anticipated,” Sherman stated “I think one has the potential to do three or four times that, just based on this being by itself on a Sunday, when people can get involved. “There’s definitely going to be more involvement on this one, because it’s not up on many things.”

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Reed Builds 3-shot Bahamas lead as Tiger rallies

A tropical breeze replaced the raging wind and made golf a lot easier for Patrick Reed, Tiger Woods and just about everyone else Thursday in the Hero World Challenge.

Reed took advantage of the back nine at Albany Golf Club for the second straight day. He was tied for the lead until making six birdies over his last 10 holes for a 6-under 66 that gave him a three-shot lead over U.S. Open champion Gary Woodland.

”It’s one of those golf courses that when the wind lays down, it gives you opportunities to make birdies,” Reed said. ”But when the wind starts blowing, the golf course can get really challenging.

You need to give yourself as many opportunities as you can.” Woods, playing for the first time since he won in Japan for his record-tying 82nd career triumph on the PGA Tour, kept a clean card to match Reed’s 66 and remain six shots behind.

Unlike the opening round, when Woods started poorly and ended even worse to wipe out a good back nine, he played bogey-free and made up ground on the back nine.

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It started with a 6-iron that hopped onto the green at the par-5 11th and rolled 7 feet away for an eagle. He followed with a 7-iron to 8 feet for another birdie. He didn’t make up any ground on Reed, but he at least cut down on the number of players ahead of him as he tries to win his holiday event for the first time since 2011.

”I just think it was less windy,” Woods said. ”It was a little bit easier today.”

Once he got through the front nine, where he spent much of the time scrambling for pars outside of a lone birdie, Woods didn’t miss too many shots coming in.

A week before he heads over to Australia as the playing captain for the U.S. team in the Presidents Cup, the game looked to be in order.

Woodland, who makes his Presidents Cup debut next week, lost ground with consecutive bogeys that left him six shots behind at one point. He fixed that by finishing with three straight birdies for a 69 and will be paired with Reed again on Friday for the third round.

The tournament ends Saturday so the American team can board a charter to Melbourne, arriving on Monday.

Dustin Johnson, who withdrew from the Bahamas to have one more week for his knee to recover, plans to fly in on Saturday to join the rest of the Americans on the charter.

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