Tiger got off to a hot start on Sunday afternoon while paired with Rickie Fowler. Tiger began his round with 3 straight birdies. On the par 3 fifth, Tiger came up short on his approach leaving a tricky bunker shot. Woods was able to hole the bunker shot like retro Tiger. Tiger 3-putted for bogey on the next hole, a par 5, which has been very uncharacteristic of Tiger this weekend. However, Tiger was able to birdie the following hole and would make the turn with a score of 32.
On hole 13, Tiger made another 3-putt bogey, the first of back-to-back bogeys. On 14, the bogey was caused by an errant shot off the tee that found the sandy waste area. On 17, Tiger hit a conservative shot into the par 3. Left with a 25-foot putt, Tiger would just get the ball to the hole for a nice birdie. On 18, Tiger sprayed his tee shot, a 3 wood, into the waste area to the right of the fairway. His second shot came up well short of the green and into the water hazard. Tiger could not save sink his bogey attempt leaving a double bogey finish. Tiger finished 32 – 38 = 70, good for -8 overall.
Now for some grades:
Driver: Tiger got off to a hot start hitting his first 3 fairways. Missing the fairway at Albany Golf Club can be very costly because of the sandy waste areas, which are littered with vegetation. His driver definitely cost him 2 or 3 shots off his final score. Tiger finished his round missing 5 straight fairways. C
Irons: Iron’s continue to be Tiger’s strength. Although they weren’t as strong as day's prior, they really did not cost him any shots. His well-struck shots are setting up nice birdie chances and his misses are leaving some very straightforward wedge shots. One terrible mistake made by Woods was his water ball on 18. This error was mainly due to a terrible drive, but he has to avoid that water and know when to play a little more conservative. B+
Wedges: Wedge game still looks good. The highlight of the day has to be the bunker shot Tiger dunked on the fifth hole for a birdie. A
Putting: Tiger had 2 costly 3-putts. Tiger’s lag putting was not that great today leaving himself some testers for par. Tiger still had some good moments though, including sinking a long birdie putt on 17. B-
Overall, I’d give Tiger’s round a grade of B. He had some great holes, but he also made a few mental errors that cost him 4 or 5 shots. If Tiger does not make these mistakes, his 70 could have been in the mid-60s. These errors could partially be due to fatigue, which will get better the more he plays.
Moving forward, I’d like to see Tiger shoot in the 60s in the final day and try to give the guys in front of him a run for their money.