Woods struggles at his former playground

By Jay CoffinApril 6, 2012, 11:19 pm

AUGUSTA, Ga. – Tiger Woods lost his game and could not find it at, of all places, Augusta National.

Imagine that.

The place Woods once dominated more than anyone not named Jack Nicklaus, no longer is his playground. No longer does he dominate these hallowed grounds. No longer does he feel comfortable here.

Woods shot 3-over-par 75 Friday and stands at 3 over, eight shots behind 52-year-old Fred Couples and Jason Dufner.

The game’s main attraction wouldn’t admit it, but he seemed lost. Lost with the flatstick in his hands, lost with irons in his hands and lost on the par 5s, which he’s overpowered since the mid-1990s.

“I have it in stretches,” Woods said, referring to his swing. “I get into streaks where it's really good and then I lose it for a little bit. That's obviously very frustrating.”

Woods, 36, has won four Masters but hasn’t won here since 2005. He’s never been worse than fourth place after the midway point in each of those four Masters wins. The past two years, Woods tied for fourth with a one-dimensional swing. He’s now tied for 40th place and was the high man in his grouping with Miguel Angel Jimenez (3 under) and Sang-Moon Bae (2 over).

There have been more clues lately that would suggest Woods was on the verge of playing well, not evidence to the contrary. The Arnold Palmer Invitational victory is the most obvious clue. The first-round 72 was another because it was vintage Tiger, the one who would grind out an even-par score with a D-plus game.

Woods shot a D-plus score with a D-plus game Friday. He missed putts shorter than 6 feet on six occasions and twice made bogey from the middle of the fairway when he blocked approach shots well right of the green.

The par-3 16th hole produced another wild unforced error. With the hole cut in the front portion of the green, most players were hoisting the ball 20 feet past and letting it trickle back toward the hole.

Woods had 9-iron in his hand and blew it 30 yards right, into a greenside bunker. He dropped the club, turned around, kicked it and dropped an infamous slur he’s been known to say on occasion. The ball ended up in a fried-egg lie. He blasted out and was not able to make par.

“It’s a simple 9-iron,” Woods said. “It’s not that hard. It’s a very easy golf shot. I laid the shaft down and stuck it to the right just like I did on 15.”

That’s the thing. There was no such thing as a routine shot for Woods in Round 2. It seemed like most times he was standing over the ball he had no idea where it was going. He doesn’t resemble the man who torched Bay Hill two weeks ago and walked away with a five-shot victory. There he played the par 5s in 12 under par. Here he’s played them in 1 under (one birdie, seven pars) through two rounds.

Look, the whole world knows Woods record here is still better than anyone of his generation – Phil Mickelson included – but this isn’t the same place for him. Smart money says Woods will find a way to creep into the top-10 by the end of the week, but a victory is now unlikely no matter how Woods tries to spin it.

“I’ve been around the block for a number of years, and I understand how to be patient, I understand how to grind it out and the tournament is not over,” Woods said. “Last year I think on the final round I made up seven shots.

“I can do this.”

If he does, he’ll have to pass world-class players named Westwood, Garcia, Watson, Kuchar and McIlroy, among others.

And if happens Woods will have to find his game at a place he once dominated, but no longer does.

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Rose leads with play stopped in Indonesia; Snedeker withdraws

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.


Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'


President at the Presidents Cup


Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump


Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73


Cart on the green


Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green


Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open


Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National


Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open


Trump golf properties

Vandalism

Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses

Finances


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers


Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover


Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up


Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.