Rory shows Tiger how it's done on Day 1

By Rex HoggardJanuary 26, 2012, 12:30 pm

ABU DHABI – Give Round 1 to the scrappy Ulsterman, but it was a TKO by nearly every measure.

Rory McIlroy scrambled liked, well, Tiger Woods for a 5-under 67 and a share of the lead at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, while Woods hit 17 of 18 greens but read them like a sixth-grader picking his way through an Ayn Rand tome and is three back following an uneventful 70.

Woods vs. McIlroy. Old vs. young. Present meet future.

Video: Score one for scrambling McIlroy

Not that the 36-years-young Woods was conceding anything to the 22-year-old. In fact, in a moment of honesty, McIlroy conceded he did get lulled into a long-driving contest with the former world No. 1.

“It did cross my mind a couples of time,” McIlroy said. “He took it way left on the (dogleg left) 16th. I was like, I’m not sure if I can take it down that line. When you see a guy out in front of you hitting it out there, you want to try and keep up with him.”

McIlroy didn’t keep up with Woods, flaring his drive right, but has a share of the lead following a few scrambling birdies, including a 40-footer from off the green at the eighth, and a bogey-free final nine.

“He didn’t drive it very good today, but he hit a lot of quality irons when he was in position to do it and his short game is great,” Woods said. “The putts that he made, they didn’t lip in, they poured in. It’s one of the reasons why he had a great year last year.”

Watch live coverage of Tiger Woods' second round beginning at 3AM ET Friday. Saturday and Sunday action airs live from 4-8AM ET.

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Rory: Phil said RC task force just copied Europe

By Randall MellFebruary 21, 2018, 7:21 pm

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Playing the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am two weeks ago, Rory McIlroy quizzed Phil Mickelson about what the Americans got out of the U.S. Ryder Cup task force’s overhaul.

McIlroy and Mickelson were paired together at Pebble Beach.

“Basically, all they are doing is copying what the Europeans have done,” McIlroy said.  “That's what he said.”

The Europeans claimed their sixth of seven Ryder Cups with their victory at Gleneagles in 2014. That brought about a sea change in the way the United States approached the Ryder Cup. Mickelson called out the tactics in Gleneagles of captain Tom Watson, who was outmaneuvered by European captain Paul McGinley.

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The Americans defeated Europe at Hazeltine two years ago with that new European model.

“He said the first thing they did in that task force was Phil played a video, a 12-minute video of Paul McGinley to all of them,” McIlroy said. “So, they are copying what we do, and it's working for them. It's more cohesive, and the team and the core of that team are more in control of what they are doing, instead of the PGA of America recruiting and someone telling them what to do.”

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Tiger Tracker: Honda Classic

By Tiger TrackerFebruary 21, 2018, 7:00 pm

Tiger Woods is making his third start of the year at the Honda Classic. We're tracking him at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

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Woods happy to help Furyk at Ryder Cup

By Ryan LavnerFebruary 21, 2018, 6:58 pm

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Tiger Woods didn't hesitate when Jim Furyk asked him to become a vice captain at the upcoming Ryder Cup.

Woods said Wednesday that Furyk asked he and Steve Stricker “a while ago” whether they were interested in being assistants in Paris as the Americans try to win a Ryder Cup on foreign soil for the first time in 25 years.

“He’s one of my best friends,” Woods said of Furyk, “and whatever he wants, whatever he needs, I’m there to help him. We’re worked well the last couple of years in the cups together.”

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Though Woods has said that he wants to be a playing vice captain, he has been an assistant at each of the past two international team competitions.

Furyk, Woods and Stricker were all assistants at Hazeltine, where the U.S. won in a rout.

“Jim is very detailed, very smart, very analytical, and he’s just a fantastic leader,” Woods said. “For him to ask Stricks and I together, it will be special for both of us.”

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Woods to hit '4 or 5' drivers each day at Honda

By Ryan LavnerFebruary 21, 2018, 6:25 pm

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Those hoping Tiger Woods will wield the driver early and often this week at PGA National likely will be disappointed.

Depending on wind direction, he said he will only hit “four or five” drivers each round.

During Wednesday’s pro-am, Woods hit driver on six holes. He found two fairways with the big stick and found the right rough four times, though a few of those misses were only a few yards off the fairway.

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In two starts this year, Woods has struggled mightily with every club off the tee, but driver has been especially troublesome. He has found only 36 percent of the fairways so far (30 of 84).

The Champion Course here is a par 70, with water and bunkers often lining the fairways. Putting the ball in play off the tee will be at a premium, and so Woods opted for a low, penetrating 2-iron six times in the pro-am.

Woods said he did not make any equipment changes following the missed cut at Riviera.