Woods Completes World Domination

By George WhiteMarch 2, 2003, 5:00 pm
Tiger Woods put another giant checkmark on his list of tournaments Sunday. He had never before won the WCG-Accenture Match Play Championship, but that one is now in the books. Woods took care of that with finality when he toppled David Toms, ranked No. 6 in the pre-tournament ratings, 2 and l, in 35 holes.
 
The Match Play Championship was the only one of the four World Golf Championship events that Woods had not won. He has played in 14 WGC events and won seven of them

Its really pretty cool to have all four, said Woods. I guess theyre all different in their own right, but Im extremely happy to win this one. And this one was tough all week Im pretty stoked about it.

Woods dropped a four-foot putt for par on the 17th hole in the afternoon to finally subdue the pesky Toms. For most of the morning it looked a Tiger runaway, but he made three bogeys in the afternoon as the greens got progressively slicker and Toms made a tight match of it.
 
Adam Scott won the consolation match in an all-Australian affair, 1-up, over Peter Lonard after zooming ahead by six holes after only eight had been played. That match, too, tightened up considerably, Scott hanging on the last two holes to win.
 
Tiger led 4-up at the end of the morning round and increased it to 5-up when he birdied the first hole of the afternoon. He appeared on his way to a quick TKO, but suddenly Toms threw a major scare into the world No. 1.
 
Match play is a very fickle thing, said a tired Woods after it was finally over. Theres so many different things that go, just the momentum, how it ebbs and flows.
 
Toms birdied Nos. 2 and 3 back-to-back to get back into it, now only three holes down. Woods birdied the sixth hole to go back up by four, but then sprayed the ball badly on Nos. 8 and 9 for bogeys. Suddenly it was tight again, Tiger up by only two as the homeward half began.
 
Giving him those holes back-to-back like that with bogeys, not like he made back-to-back birdies ' I gave him those two holes, said Tiger. And thats ' you just cant do that in match play.
 
And I didnt putt well today. My speed was off. The greens were so fast out there. I dont know what they were rolling, but they were rolling pretty quick.
 
The match tightened further when Toms birdied the par-5 11th and Woods didnt. Now the big five-hole lead was reduced to the minimum, Woods 1-up as they played the 12th. The two traded holes again before the 17th, which Toms started by blocking his tee shot into the right rough with a tree in his line to the flag. Woods, after a perfect drive, hit a 7-iron 195 yards, the ball skipping into a bunker. However, he was able to get up-and-down in two shots for the win.
 
Im not going to quit ' thats not my nature, said Toms. Its a battle within yourself and I was able to overcome that.
 
The fact that Toms was never able to get the lead loomed large all day. I think that was huge from the momentum standpoint, that he never really got all the momentum, said Tiger. He got a lot of it, but he didnt get all of it.
 
Toms was impressed all week by Woods and the way he had to play. Hes the greatest player in the world, he said, but this week ' with the soft conditions ' he had to go to a different type game to win matches.
 
You guys dont realize for a guy who hits the ball that hard, as much spin as he puts on it ' he had to just chip the ball around the golf course, Toms said in praising Woods. If he hits it on the nose, the ball spins back off the green. So every time he stepped up, he was hitting one to two more clubs than he normally would (because the course was so damp.)
 
Woods was involved in only one other struggle all week, the Saturday semifinal with Scott. Tiger shot a 5-under 67 in the regulation 18, but so did a hot Scott. Woods won the first extra hole when Scott blew his first putt three feet past the flag, then missed the comeback attempt for a bogey.
 
Woods shot 3-under while stopping Carl Pettersson, 2-up, in the first match. Pettersson was 1-under in the 17-hole set. Woods defeated K.J. Choi while shooting 2-under for 15 holes, then buried Stephen Leaney with a six-birdie, one-bogey performance.
 
Next he toppled Scott Hoch, 5 and 4, during a day when Hoch was shooting 3-under in the 14 holes they played. Woods had five birdies and an eagle. Next came the 5-under par in the semis against Scott ' a total of 22-under for just 77 holes. If youre keeping score, thats an average tally of better than 68 for every 18 holes.
 
Woods has now won two of the three tournaments he has entered since coming back from knee surgery in the off-season. He won the Buick Invitational three weeks ago and finished three shots out of the lead at the Nissan Open two weeks ago.
 
Im starting to feel good, Woods said. Theres no doubt about it. I was on a tear, actually, from 99 into 2000. It kind of rolled over into it.
 
I started to putting the pieces together at the end of last year. At the Grand Slam I started to play better. My practice sessions at home, Im starting to hit some balls. I was starting to work on some things that I know I used to do in my golf swing that I havent been able to do because of my leg, and things were starting to come together, and Im pretty excited about that.
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage of the Accenture Match Play Championship
  • Tiger Decides to Skip Dubai
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.