PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland – For many years of Tiger Woods watchers, the worrying signs were immediately apparent as he entered the grounds of Royal Portrush upon his arrival from Florida.
There was a slow, steady cadence to his speech, a faltering walk, and the tiger's message that he had not even opened his golf bag during a two-week holiday in Thailand after the US Open.
Woods admitted on Tuesday that his game was not where he wanted it, some problems at the driving range on Wednesday and then the cool, rainy temperatures that are kryptonitic for a man with a bad back.
The result was no surprise. Woods, who has played only twelve rounds of golf since his dazzling Masters win in April, missed the cut at The Open by a sizeable amount. He had several problems, namely a rusty game and a stiff attitude, of which he frankly admits that they are part of a new normal state.
But there was more twitching and distortion than ever before in the competition's 1
Was this something heavier? Another disk problem than the part of the back he had merged? Another injury?
Woods sometimes reminded of 2015 when he had to record numerous successes in three major championships, including cutting losses after just three tournaments.
Although Woods may never have studied this subject in detail, he was far more open about the ups and downs he is experiencing. And when he was asked if this was even comparable to the fighting a few years ago, Woods quickly put the brakes on.
"You can not compare them," Woods said after a second round 70, leaving him five strokes from the cut line. That's just that I'm not playing well and not good points, and it adds up to high scores. "
Das It is significant that Woods could easily have danced around this question, instead he answered it directly, and it should give some relief to those worried about his physical condition.
Nevertheless, he decided next week At the WGC FedEx St. Jude Invitational, a world championship in the Gulf, Memphis says he just wants to "take a break." "Playing two rounds of golf last month does not seem like much of a hassle, but Woods has the long journey to go Thailand with his family and then a cram session to prepare for the Open, which included a trip to Northern Ireland.
Playing five out of six weeks, including the Memphis tournament the following week, never seemed feasible, although the 43-year-old Woods could have skipped the first FedEx instead Cup playoff event. If he plays the Northern Trust and makes it to the Tour Championship, he will play for three consecutive weeks for the first time in a year after playing only once in a row.
"It's just a matter of being consistent," he said. "The & # 39; As an older athlete, it's hardest to accept that you're not as constant as you were at 23. The things are And I will have my hot weeks, I will be there to win and I will win tournaments.
"But there are times when I will simply not be there. And that was not the case with some of them. I had a different body some years ago and could be a bit more consistent. Of course it is difficult to find consistency when playing so seldom, the lack of golf after winning the Master was understandable, a missed cut in the PGA Championship part of the Fallout, but then, after a draw for the ninth At the Memorial and a draw for the 21st at the US Open, Woods again decided not to play between majors.
Maybe he had no choice, no one should treat him to a family vacation, but if Woods has a lesson to learn here, then it is no longer a viable option to compete without competition, and establishing the balance between rest and rehabilitation and major punches will be a constant challenge.
Understandably, after winning the Masters, expectations rose again Speaking of Jack Nicklaus – Record of 18 majors who were in the game, Sam Snead's 82 PGA Tour victory record with another win explained what would be needed to get back to # 1 in the world.
Instead It was a slow, steady air leak from Tiger's big balloon. Woods admitted how much the tournament had taken him, but he would not say how hard it was to get back up to those heights. Was he unable, unmotivated? Maybe he was happy for one of the rare situations in his athletic life.
Max Kellerman says Tiger Woods will never be who he once was, but his size will show through several times to win several big titles.
For the first time he missed two cuts in the same year in which he won a big championship. Only once before had he done so – in 2015, at the height of his fights, he had missed three. By now he has missed 10 major cuts in his career, three in the last two years.
"It's more frustrating than anything else because it's a great championship and I love playing at these events," Woods said. "I love the atmosphere, I just love the stress of playing in a major, and unfortunately, I just had the chance to win one and I managed to do it, but I did not do the other three well." , [PgPGA Championship's new schedule, postponed to May, proved negative.] Instead of the heat from St. Louis last summer at the PGA, where Woods finished second, he missed the cut The cool Bethpage Black.Pebble Beach also provided the stabbing cool temperatures.Over a few days in practice, Royal Portrush was barely mild.
But Woods on Friday sounded much more optimistic than a guy worried about his future. He talked about running in the FedEx Cup playoffs, emphasizing the need to be cautious about his schedule to extend his career.
And then there were the results. Sure, Woods missed the cut with several punches, almost all because of the five-hole track he had played on Thursday over 4. He also failed to play one of the par 5 birdies and played this in 2 over, which is not conducive to the difference ersetzung. Despite the hassle, he still shot 70 on Friday, and that included cheating the last two holes.
For a guy who did not have it, Woods & # 39; s game certainly had a lot of good. But that's with the perspective of its limits. Getting healthy, of course, is essential, otherwise we should expect more weeks, such as the short he has experienced at Royal Portrush.