Lefty One Back Tiger Struggles

By Sports NetworkJuly 6, 2006, 4:00 pm
Cialis Western OpenLEMONT, Ill. -- Joe Ogilvie, Lucas Glover, Daniel Chopra and David McKenzie share the lead at 5-under-par 66 after one round of the Western Open, one shot ahead of a group that includes Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh and Davis Love III.
Playing for the second time since the death of his father in May, Tiger Woods opened with a 1-over 72 on Thursday and is tied for 82nd place.
Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson overcame two early bogeys to shoot 4-under 67 Thursday.
Woods, a three-time Western Open champion, is now plus-13 in the three rounds of competitive golf he has played since finishing tied for third place at the Masters in April.
'I know what I'm doing wrong, I'm just having a hard time stopping it,' said Woods, who missed the U.S. Open cut three weeks ago at 12 over par.
Woods went birdie-bogey at the fifth and sixth holes, then bogeyed consecutive holes from the 14th. His last bogey at the par-5 15th came with a penalty, and he was 2 over before rolling in a 12-foot birdie putt at the 18th hole.
Asked if he was working on a swing adjustment, Woods responded, 'Yeah. I know what it is, I just have a hard time doing it in competition. Welcome to golf.'
In addition to winning this event in 1997, 1999 and 2003, Woods finished runner-up to Jim Furyk last year. He has won more than $2.4 million here -- a Western Open record.
It might be just the tournament to get his game back on track.
'I always feel good playing here,' Woods said. 'Even if I'm swinging the club great or I'm swinging the club poor, I always love playing this course.'
Also competing for the first time since the U.S. Open, Mickelson put together an up-and-down round that concluded with an eagle at his final hole, the par-5 ninth at Cog Hill Golf & Country Club's Dubsdread Course.
Of course, it was three weeks ago at Winged Foot where a disastrous double-bogey at the 72nd hole cost Mickelson his first U.S. Open title.
From 275 yards out on Thursday, he knocked his second shot at the ninth within 4 1/2 feet to set up the eagle -- rolling the ball past the hole and narrowly missing a rare double-eagle.
'Obviously to make an eagle required some luck,' Mickelson admitted. 'I was just trying to get on the green and the ball ended up rolling by the pin. But it's fun to finish a round of golf like that.'
Mickelson admitted to feeling more 'tuned in' to his golf game this past week. Preparing for the British Open in two weeks, he has been to Royal Liverpool to check out the course and work on some shots.
It's the same type of preparation he completed over a year's time for the U.S. Open -- preparation that paid off until the final hole.
Thursday, Mickelson began his round with a pair of bogeys, then didn't bogey another hole until the par-3 sixth -- his 15th hole. In between he collected five birdies, including three straight from the third.
It was the type of stretch he's been looking for since winning his second Masters title in April.
'I didn't feel like I played very well a couple of weeks ago,' Mickelson said. 'I haven't really struck it the way I wanted to since the Masters...But it was a fun round today.'
Charles Warren, Stephen Leaney and 2000 champion Robert Allenby joined Mickelson, Singh and Love in fifth place at 4-under-par 67. Behind them, a group of 10 players share 11th place at minus-3, including 2004 winner Stephen Ames.
In all, 37 players are within three shots of the four leaders after the first day. Defending champion Furyk opened with a 2-under 69 to share 21st place with 20 others.
Among the leaders, only two have ever made the cut at the Western Open (Glover and Ogilvie) and just one has a top-10 finish (Ogilvie, T9 1999). The four-way tie was the biggest logjam atop the Western Open leaderboard in 12 years.
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    After Further Review: Tiger's return comes at perfect time

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 2:19 am

    Each week, GolfChannel.com takes a look back at the week in golf. Here's what's weighing on our writers' minds.

    On the current state of golf as Tiger Woods returns to competition ...

    Less than four days before Tiger Woods returns to official competitive golf for the first time in a year, Jon Rahm, the new second-ranked player in the world, won on the PGA Tour and Rory McIlroy made an impressive 2018 debut on the European Tour (T-3).

    Not since Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus crossed paths at the 1960 U.S. Open has there been so many superstars all poised for big seasons, with world No. 1 Dustin Johnson having already won this year and Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas both coming off stellar seasons.

    It’s a good time for golf. - Rex Hoggard

    On Tommy Fleetwood's continued success ...

    There have been scores of talented European players whose skills didn’t translate to the PGA Tour … and maybe, in a few years, Tommy Fleetwood will prove to be no different.

    He sure looks like the real deal, though.  

    His title defense in Abu Dhabi – on the strength of a back-nine 30 in windy conditions – was his third title in the past 12 months and 11th top-10 overall. A few of those have come in majors and World Golf Championship events, too, which led the reigning Race to Dubai champion to accept PGA Tour membership for this season.

    Beginning at Riviera, he plans to play exclusively in the States through May, then reassess for the rest of the year. Hope he sticks, because he’s a fun personality with tons of game. - Ryan Lavner

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    Rahm passes Spieth to become world No. 2

    By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:25 am

    With his win Sunday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, Jon Rahm picked up his second PGA Tour victory and moved to No. 2 in the FedExCup points standings.

    He picked up one more No. 2, too.

    The 23-year-old Spaniard passed Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, behind only Dustin Johnson.

    In 19 months, since June 2016, Rahm has rocketed from No. 776 in the world to No. 2, thanks in part to his low divisor, his number of events played.

    Asked after his playoff victory over Andrew Landry to discuss his rapid ascent up the world rankings, Rahm was almost at a loss.

    “It's hard to believe to be honest, passing Jordan Spieth,” he said. “That's a three-time major champion. I only have two wins. He's got 10-plus, right? It's again – I've said it many times – I never thought I was going to be at this point in my life right now.”

    Rahm may only have two PGA Tour titles, but this is his fourth worldwide win in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. He also took the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and the DP World Tour Championship on his way to claiming the European Tour’s 2017 Rookie of the Year Award.

    Dating back to the start of last season on the PGA Tour, Rahm has racked up 12 top-10s, three runner-ups, and two wins.

    He will head to Torrey Pines next week ready to defend for the first time.

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    Brady compares self to Woods after winning AFC title

    By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 1:05 am

    Tom Brady and Tiger Woods are two of the all-time greats in their respective sports ... a fact that is not lost on the five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback.

    Fresh off leading the New England Patriots to a AFC Championship victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Brady was asked about winning the game despite a cut on his throwing hand - which made national news heading into the matchup.

    His response invoked the name of a certain 14-time major winner, something that would be tough to pull off, if not for the fact that he is, you know, Tom Brady.

    “I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that," the 40-year-old told reporters after the game. "It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament."

    Tiger Woods winning with his "C game" may be a distant memory for golf fans, but no matter what game he brings, his next chance to win comes next week at Torrey Pines during his official comeback to the PGA Tour.

    Brady has a shot at his sixth Super Bowl title in two weeks. The Patriots would probably benefit from him bringing a little better than his "C game" as well.

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    Rahm beats Landry in playoff to win CareerBuilder

    By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:00 am

    Jon Rahm birdied the fourth extra hole Sunday to defeat Andrew Landry in a playoff, win the CareerBuilder Challenge and move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Here’s how things played out in overtime at PGA West:

    Leaderboard: Rahm (-22), Landry (-22), John Huh (-20), Adam Hadwin (-20), Martin Piller (-20), Kevin Chappell (-19), Scott Piercy (-19)

    What it means: This is Rahm’s second PGA Tour win and his fourth worldwide victory in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. Rahm took the early lead Thursday with an opening 62 and after rounds of 67-70, he started the final round two back. On Sunday, he made five birdies without dropping a single shot on the intimidating Stadium Course. In the clubhouse at 22 under, Rahm watched as Landry made birdie on 18 to force a playoff.

    Rahm missed birdie putts that would have ended the tournament on the final hole of regulation and on each playoff hole. Finally, on his fourth trip down 18 of the day, his birdie bid found the cup. With the victory, Rahm passes Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, trailing only Dustin Johnson. He enters next week at Torrey Pines looking to defend for the first time.

    Best of the rest: A two-time Web.com winner playing his second full season on the PGA Tour, Landry shot 68 Sunday, making birdie on the 72nd hole to force extras. Once Rahm finally made birdie on the fourth playoff hole, Landry's putt to extend slid by on the right edge. This is Landry's best career finish on the PGA Tour. Had he won, he would have secured full Tour status through the 2019-20 season and earned invites to the Masters, Players, and PGA Championships.

    Round of the day: Sam Saunders fired an 8-under 64 to register this best finish of the season, a tie for eighth at 18 under. The reigning Web.com Tour Championship winner was 9 under par through 12 holes before making bogey at 13 and parring his way into the clubhouse.

    Biggest disappointment: Overnight leader Austin Cook was eyeing his second win of the season but never contended. The RSM champion carded two double bogeys Sunday en route to a 3-over 75, dropping him from the 54-hole lead to a tie for 14th.

    Shot of the day: Rahm's putt to win:

    Quote of the day: "One of us had to do it and either one of us would have been a well-deserving champion." - Rahm on his playoff victory over Landry