NASSAU, Bahamas – Last year at this point, Tiger Woods was tired and ticked off.
At the 2016 Hero World Challenge, where he was making his return to competition following a 15-month absence because of back surgery, Woods 3 under through nine and cruising.
But he bogeyed the 11th hole and played his final three holes in 4 over par to finish with a 73.
It was a similar start for Woods on Thursday at Albany, where he made the turn in 1 under, but this time he added birdies at Nos. 10, 13 and 14 and salvaged a bogey at the 15th hole after a wayward drive. It all added up to an opening 69.
“Last year I got tired,” said Woods, tied for eighth, three shots off the lead. “I was 3 or 4 under par and then make a couple [double bogeys], a couple bogeys here or there and lose the round.”
As encouraging as his start was, it was Woods’ ability to finish his round that seemed to give him confidence.
“This year obviously with my back better, my training sessions have been much better, my strength is up, and I didn't feel tired at all, which is great,” he said.