In the big picture, though, its somewhat meaningless.
His 08 win streak is modest at one - three going back to last year - but to hear the talk, 16 of 16 this seasons not impossible. He does have that Year of 2000, unbeatable look about him, doesnt he?
Still, lose this week and Tigers again nothing more than a victim of an unpredictable format, with very few jumping off the grand slam train.
The greatest amateur match player ever, hes simply more vulnerable at this level because 63 shooters with one good round in the holster crouch at every corner, from Peter OMalley to Nick OHern to quite possibly J.B .Holmes.
So a Tiger defeat would be only mildly surprising, not shocking. Certainly for any man who conquers Tiger its a scrapbook, tell-the-grandkids-about-it-moment.
But this isnt the Giants against the Patriots; most in golf dont root for the underdog. And yet nothing chops Gulliver down to size like Match Play.
Want a Tiger/Phil final? It could well be David Toms against Soren Hansen.
For now, anticipation lives, Tiger looming large, all those gunslingers lurking in the Arizona desert brush.
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