How Tiger pretty much played himself out of The Open


Save 20% on CBD Products with "Save20"

PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland — Nobody had to say it for him. Tiger Woods said it himself.

His game was not ready for The Open.

“It’s not quite as sharp as I’d like to have it right now,” he admitted earlier in the week.

That much was clear in Thursday’s first round. He shot 41 on the front nine, his worst-ever start in this championship. He made just one birdie and signed for a 7-over 78.

Sure, he can go low on Friday and make the cut. But that is hard to envision when you look back on what he did in Round 1:

No. 1: Par 4, 421 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: Even

It’ll look like a routine par on the scorecard, but Tiger Woods’ start to The Open was far from simple. Tee shot, with an iron, wide left (with a little wince afterward). Approach rolls back into bunker, about 40 yards short of the green. He hits picture-perfect sand blast to 10 feet. Rolls in putt, gives mini-first pump. Oh, and it started raining halfway through the hole.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

No. 2: Par 5, 574 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: Even

The field has taken advantage of the par-5 second hole — it’s the second-easiest on the course. Still, Tiger could not give it a go after his tee shot found its way into a fairway bunker. Two holes, two bad tee balls. Forced to grind his way up to the green instead of attack, Woods settles for a par.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

No. 3: Par 3, 177 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: Even

Tiger with a pinpoint iron at the third hole. The 15-footer for birdie hits the edge. Three holes in, three pars. And now the sideways rain has stopped and the sun is shining.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com5h ago

No. 4: Par 4, 482 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: Even

Tiger hits his first fairway — and it finds its way into a divot. But he hits a strong approach to 25 feet and two-putts for another par. So far he has followed his normal Tiger game plan at majors — play conservative, ease into things and make some pars.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

No. 5: Par 4, 374 Yards

Score: Bogey
Total for the day: 1 over

With the tees up on Thursday, the par-4 fifth hole at Royal Portrush is drivable. DJ got there. So did Patrick Cantlay. Patrick Reed was right in front. Tiger doesn’t choose that option, instead laying back with a 3-wood. This is a birdie hole, a par-4 playing as the third-easiest on the course. Woods hits a wedge to the back of the green and three-putts for a bad, bad bogey.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

No. 6: Par 3, 194 Yards

Score: Double bogey
Total for the day: 3 over

The wheels are starting to fall off for Tiger Woods. He misses the green left at the par-3 sixth, then hits the shot all amateurs can identify with — a skulled flop shot. By the time his game of chase around the green ends, he writes a double on the scorecard to fall to 3 over. Heading toward danger zone as the rain picks up again.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com4h ago

No. 7: Par 5, 592 Yards

Score: Bogey
Total for the day: 4 over

Tiger Woods chunks his way up the par-5 seventh hole. A bad drive, a terrible layup, a line drive off a mound, a hacked-out iron. Then he stuffs a wedge from 101 yards for a tap-in, absolutely bizarre bogey. So that’s bogey, double, bogey over this three-hole stretch.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com3h ago

No. 8: Par 4, 434 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: 4 over

Tiger leaves a birdie putt two rolls short at the eighth hole. Ends the bad run, but still stands 4 over.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com3h ago

No. 9: Par 4, 432 Yards

Score: Bogey
Total for the day: 5 over

That was about as bad as it could get for Tiger Woods on his first nine at The Open. He bladed a wedge, he hacked it out of the rough, he three-putted. Sometimes, in golf, you can mask all that and sneak away with a decent number. Not this time. Tiger shoots 5-over 41 on the front.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com3h ago

No. 10: Par 4, 447 Yards

Score: Bogey
Total for the day: 6 over

Tiger continues to slide, starting his back nine with another bogey to fall to 6 over. Unless something jolts him into form, a score in the 80s is not out of the realm of possibility.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

No. 11: Par 4, 474 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: 6 over

On the 11th, Tiger was disgusted by his second shot and disgusted by his birdie putt. Fortunately for him, he knocked in the 6-foot comebacker for a needed par.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

No. 12: Par 5, 532 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: 6 over

Tiger’s search for a birdie continues. He misses a good chance at the par-5 12th. But the good news is it isn’t a bogey. He taps in par to stay 6 over.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

No. 13: Par 3, 194 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: 6 over

Tiger with a second consecutive chance at birdie. And another miss. Nothing good through 13 holes. Just no continuity in his game, no energy in his walk.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com2h ago

No. 14: Par 4, 473 Yards

Score: Bogey
Total for the day: 7 over

In his practice round earlier this week, Tiger Woods found himself in the deep bunker at No. 14. Left his first attempt in the bunker. Hit a few more, just in case he was back in it during competition. Well, guess what? That’s where he was in the first round. He got the ball out, but nowhere close. The bogey train rolls on.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com1h ago

No. 15: Par 4, 426 Yards

Score: Total for the day: 6 over

Tiger finally makes a birdie, rolling in a long putt at the 15th. As the ball tumbled into the hole, Woods threw his arms up in the air. After a day like he’s had, there’s not much more you can do than laugh.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com1h ago

No. 16: Par 3, 236 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: 6 over

Tiger had to work to avoid a bogey at the 16th after a poor tee shot. But he gets up and down from a tricky spot left of the green to salvage par. He walks to the 17th tee at 6 over.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com54m ago

No. 17: Par 4, 408 Yards

Score: Par
Total for the day: 6 over

Tiger with a boring par at the 17th. That’s saying something, given how things have gone in this opening round. Fairway, green and two putts at the par 4. But if he wants to be around for the weekend, he’s going to need to put it in high gear on Friday.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com39m ago

No. 18: Par 4, 474 Yards

Score: Bogey
Total for the day: 7-over 78

A fitting end to a bad day. Tiger Woods makes one more bogey — missing the fairway, missing the green, missing the par putt — to post a 7-over 78 in the first round of The Open at Royal Portrush.

Nick Pietruszkiewicz, ESPN.com13m ago

Related posts

Leave a Comment