Blog Entry

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Posted on: February 22, 2012 5:23 pm
Edited on: February 22, 2012 6:27 pm
 
Tiger Woods survived a tough first round match at the Accenture. (Getty)

By Shane Bacon

If you ever wanted a view of where Tiger Woods’ golf game has been the last two and a half years, you needed to spend a few hours watching his first round match at the Accenture Match Play on Wednesday.

Luck had always been on Tiger’s side for so many years, but the first hole showed that wasn’t really the case anymore. His opponent, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, a man that said Tiger was beatable before the match began, had a short birdie putt on the first hole that went on a victory lap before falling in to put the rather unknown 1-up. Tiger lost the next hole as well, and while he steadied the ship, and eventually won, it was anything but pretty.

Missed opportunities when it seemed like Fernandez-Castano was giving him the hole, powering birdie putts past the hole forcing him to mark and re-putt and looking fairly lost with his golf swing, the greatest thing you can say about Tiger’s Wednesday is he’s lucky he played a guy that didn’t seem ready to slam the door on the 14-time major winner.  

But, he did win, and that’s what this is all about. Tiger made a mess of the 18th hole after missing a fairly routine birdie putt on the 17th hole, but a clutch par save on the last gave him the win, and he advances to the second round to play a red-hot Nick Watney.

Tiger’s game plan on Wednesday seemed off. He had opportunities to play match play golf against someone that might not know exactly how to win these type of matches, but he continued to hit the hero shot and didn’t seem to get away with hit. His drive on No. 2 was just the start, but a few other decisions weren’t exactly right for the format. 

The strangest shot might have come on the final hole, when all Tiger really needed was to find the green and force his opponent to make birdie off a slippery slope, but Woods missed it in the toughest place he could have to leave a nasty up-and-in from the greenside bunker.

He got it, gave a muted fist pump, and is on to Thursday. Was it his best stuff? No, not by a long shot. Is advancing the only thing that matters at Marana? Absolutely, and we will see another freshly pressed Nike shirt in the second round. 

For more golf news, rumors and analysis, follow Shane Bacon and Eye On Golf on twitter.  

Category: Golf
Comments

Since: Feb 25, 2010
Posted on: February 22, 2012 8:47 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Wow!  The whole Tiger thing, losing his MoJo is so unreal.  It's almost like watching a movie in slow motion every time you watch him play.  Today's round of golf was so amazing.  He's totally lost "it."



Since: Jan 17, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2012 7:28 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

VaHawk, TW did not birdie 18, that was a par save...just to set the record straight, since you don't seem to be paying attention.



Since: Jan 17, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2012 7:22 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Bama2003, No, the event TW won is an "unofficial" event, and I think it only involved 18 players by invitation.  Not exactly a decent test.



Since: Nov 13, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2012 7:08 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Dude, this is match play....you can play like complete horse apples as long as you have a better score on more holes than your opponent.  Surviving is the name of this game.



Since: Feb 25, 2011
Posted on: February 22, 2012 6:56 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Didn't Tiger win the Chevron world challenge back in December? Doesn't tha count as a win?



Since: Aug 18, 2010
Posted on: February 22, 2012 6:40 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

 You just hear more about it now because he is perceived to actually be "beatable" now.  
How does perception have anything to do with this.  Tiger has not won in well over two years.  There is no question that Tiger is beatable.  The question is can he win.  So far, the answer is no. 



Since: Sep 16, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2012 6:25 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

VaHawk: I believe that was just a par on the last hole, as with whatsisname, but Woods was already 1-up.



Since: Sep 16, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2012 6:22 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Not sure who he's playing tomorrow, but what he had today won't be enough to win against too many of the remaining players. He was fortunate the other guy played just as badly as he did. He did manage an amazing up-and-down when it mattered most, and maybe he'll gain some momentum from winning this match, even if it was against a player he could have beaten with his eyes closed three years ago. Looks like Sergio's mother bought him those blue shoes at Walmart.



Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: February 22, 2012 6:19 pm
 

Typical first round Tiger

Tiger always seems to have close matches in his first round of match play tournaments, even when he wins them.  The lower-ranked guys just seem to give Tiger trouble in the first round of match play.  We'll see how it goes from here, though.  When he was number one, he often played the lowest guy on the totem pole.  Now, the quality of his opposition has been slightly elevated.  

In the end, though, if you want to win, you have to beat players from all parts of the draw.  As for players talking about how "beatable" Tiger is, they have been doing it for ten years.  You just hear more about it now because he is perceived to actually be "beatable" now.  
It may be now, or it may take awhile longer, but we'll definitely know when he is truly "back."   



Since: Aug 20, 2007
Posted on: February 22, 2012 6:17 pm
 

Tiger Woods 'survives' in every sense of the word

Talking trash? The guy was just expressing confidence that he thought he had a chance IF Tiger didn't play his best. Trash talk would be saying that he thought he would beat Tiger no matter what. Media likes to blow up comments. I am for Tiger... I want to see him turn his act around and shut up a whole lot of people! 


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