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How Tiger Woods was consistently inconsistent to start the US Open



MAMARONECK, NY – Tiger Woods’ first round at the US Open has been a microcosm of the state of his golf game since returning after being shut down for three months due to the coronavirus – he has had some difficult moments, some good moments, and many moments of inconsistency.

There were sections of bogies. A back-to-back birdie run. A messy double on the last hole of the day. A steady diet of missing fairways.

In the end, the scorecard added up to a 3-over-73.

A lot has happened to reach that number. This is how his first round at Winged Foot went:

No. 1: Par-4: 451 meters

Tiger Woods opens his US Open at Winged Foot by hitting the first fairway, finding the green and throwing two putts for par. He wouldn̵

7;t mind repeating that 71 more times.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com6h ago

Result: par

Total for the day: Even

No. 2: Par-4, 484 meters

Welcome to the US Open at Winged Foot. Tiger Woods took second place after a bad tee shot into the fairway bunker left him 40 yards behind Thomas and Morikawa. Dumped approach into the Greenside trap, but up and down. Pars work here.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com6h ago

Result: par

Total for the day: Even

No. 3: Par-3, 243 meters

Not that he wants to make it a habit, but save Tiger Woods with another sand. He paces up and down on the third to save Par. All three players missed the green – get used to it, it’s a 240 yard par 3 – and Woods and Morikawa both managed to convert while Thomas couldn’t.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com6h ago

Result: par

Total for the day: Even

No. 4: Par-4, 467 meters

It’s never good when you have to hit a putt and then go back and get an iron. This happened to Tiger Woods the fourth time. Just 20 feet from the leading edge, his putt rolled past the hole, over a slope, and away from the green. His comeback chip slipped past 6 feet. He rolled that up, but it was a lot of trouble just doing bogey.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

Result: leprechaun

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 5: Par-4, 502 meters

Another missed fairway then leads to the dreaded one-foot-in, one-foot-out-of-the-bunker shot for Tiger Woods. Another bogey. It was an early fight on a tough track in favorable conditions.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

Result: leprechaun

Total for the day: 2 over

No. 6: Par-4, 321 meters

Maybe the strategy is iron off the tee? Tiger Woods is just finding his second fairway by putting the heavy wood down on the sixth. He carves a wedge in the right needle and rolls in a 5-foot boat for his first championship birdie.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

Result: Birdie

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 7: Par-3, 162 meters

Tiger Woods with a solid approach to the par-3 seventh. The yardage cannot be converted but these are stress free holes. He needed a little break after going through the first five.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

Result: par

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 8: Par-4, 490 meters

Tiger returns to the driver in 8th place which means he’s rough again. The difference between fairway and rough – although it missed only a few meters – is very large with Winged Foot. And that little mistake on the tee comes with another bogey.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

Result: leprechaun

Total for the day: 2 over

No. 9: Par-5, 565 meters

A wide drive and another missed fairway at the lonely par 5 on the front have robbed Tiger Woods of the chance to break the green in two. But he repositioned himself to have a long birdie putt – it fell. He goes out in 1-over 36. It took a lot of work.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

Result: Birdie

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 10: Par-3, 214 meters

The putter gets a little hot for Tiger. After substituting one for Birdie to close the top nine, he drops another on the 10th to bring himself back to an even level. Two big birdies there.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

Result: Birdie

Total for the day: Even

No. 11: Par-4, 384 meters

Watch out … Tiger Woods is tough. After his bogey in 8th place, he fired three consecutive birdies to come under 1 at the US Open. Given the early struggle, the turnaround was a bit of a surprise. He’s not the only one who made it in the group. Justin Thomas also posted three straight birdies.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

Result: Birdie

Total for the day: 1 under

No. 12: Par-5, 633 meters

Golf is cruel. Tiger Woods had an 8-foot birdie for the fourth straight year at 12. Started walking after that … but then he curls up.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com3h ago

Result: par

Total for the day: 1 under

No. 13: Par-3, 212 meters

Tiger Woods with a mistake from teeing off on the long 13th par 3 hole. Misses the green and can’t climb this time. A strong run is stopped with a bogey to bring it back to an even level.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com3h ago

Result: leprechaun

Total for the day: Even

No. 14: Par-4, 452 meters

How bad is the rough with Winged Foot? Tiger Woods missed the fairway on the 14th – heard that already? – but only had 160 meters to the green. He couldn’t get it there. Hacked it but could only advance about 130. Not his best pitch leaves him with a 12-foot par. Can not do it. All of those good vibes from the three straight birdies are gone.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com3h ago

Result: leprechaun

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 15: Par-4, 426 meters

If you have any questions about bunkering at Winged Foot, Tiger Woods is the right contact. He’s seen more than a couple of them. At 15 he found another from the tee. He muscled his 180 yards approach to the back of the green, then gently lured him into a two-putt par over the hole.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

Result: par

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 16: Par-4, 498 meters

The 16th hole is not a birdie hole. It’s a monster 498 meters away. Of course, Tiger Woods is rolling in a 20 foot boat for the third birdie of the day by that point. No matter what happens on the last two holes, he will sign a scorecard with lots of circles (birdies), squares (bogeys) and pars.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

Result: Birdie

Total for the day: Even

No. 17: Par-4, 504 meters

The hills and valleys around Tiger Woods continue. Steals one with a birdie at 16 and returns it with a bogey at 17. As he goes to the final tee, he has done this: five birdies, six bogeys, six pars.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

Result: leprechaun

Total for the day: 1 over

No. 18: Par-4, 469 meters

What a strange round for Tiger Woods. He missed fairways, found lots of bunkers, rolled in long putts and threw a chip on the final hole. He carded six bogies, six pars, five birdies and a double. It’s one of the most complicated ways to shoot 3-over 73.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com1h ago

Result: Double bogey

Total for the day: 3-over 73


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