Stricker on Tiger: 'Has a ton of confidence' in putter

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AUGUSTA, Ga. – Few, if any, know Tiger Woods’ game as well as Steve Stricker, the world No. 1’s pro bono putting coach.

So when Stricker says the four-time Masters champion is ready to break out of his seven-year victory swoon at Augusta National, it may be worth a listen.

“It looks like he has a ton of confidence with that putter, which you need to have here,” said Stricker, who played 14 holes with Woods on Sunday at Augusta National.


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Stricker gave Woods an impromptu putting lesson before his four-stroke victory at Torrey Pines this year and again prior to his two-stroke triumph at Doral. Woods even joked at one point that with Stricker playing a limited schedule in 2013 perhaps he should put him on retainer during his weeks off.

Much has been made of Woods’ inability to don his fifth green jacket since 2005, although it should be pointed out he’s finished outside the top 5 just twice since then and has a pair of runner-up showings during the “drought.”

On Monday at Augusta National, Stricker dismissed Woods’ perceived slump at the year’s first major and pointed out the advice flows in both directions when the two are together.

“We talked pitching and chipping (on Sunday),” Stricker said. “I asked him what he tries to do. It’s mutual. He’s the best player in the world, No. 1 again, so it’s fun to bounce things off of him.”