Published: Sun, August 12, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Tiger Woods gets in the hunt despite his putting problems

Tiger Woods gets in the hunt despite his putting problems

"I knew the golf course would be very playable this morning so I thought if I came out and shot two under it would be a very good score", said Lowry, speaking to RTE Sport after he completed his second round.

OFF THE TEE (2:48 p.m. ET): Another little pull with the iron and this one flirts with the water but lands a few yards right of it and holds up on the edge of the intermediate cut.

That par was the most disappointing of the 10 straight Woods made to finish his third round Saturday at the PGA Championship.

Spieth made four birdies in the last five holes of the front nine to move all the way to 7 under before a wild drive on the par-4 12th derailed his momentum. You're never going to win a major.

Well, it depends on how you look at it. Woods is the most intriguing challenger, of course, because he has made remarkably fast progress in this comeback, and because he was four off the 54-hole lead at Carnoustie - just like he is at Bellerive - before he surged to the top of the board and flipped the sports world on its ear. He said so many times he felt the yardage he had into a green matched up nicely with the club he wanted to hit, meaning full, fluid shots. "If they were firm, I don't think I would have a chance with the way the greens are situated and the places they're putting the flags".

"I left pretty much every single putt short on the back nine", said Woods. That includes a 4-foot miss after missing a 20-footer for eagle on No. 17. It was a massively squandered opportunity, one that could easily have seen him grouped with Koepka in the final pairing.

Hitting the ball well and in the hunt. Among the other chargers and faders were Rickie Fowler, in a three-way tie for third at 9 under, the eighth time in his career that he is in the top five entering the final round of a major.

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They are a good team, a solid team, an experienced team. "It has been a hard pre-season with all the worldwide players coming back step by step and without the good levels and freshness necessary to play 90 minutes".

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Woods shot 31 on the front and was primed to shoot 65 or lower and couldn't do it. It is a trend he has yet to buck.

Tiger Woods knew the shot was good.

Koepka is trying to become the first player since Woods to capture the U.S. Open and PGA in the same year. Koepka appears fearless with the driver. Tiger's driver still remains a liability. Tiger Woods was finished, and so were hundreds of the sunbaked fans who'd camped there all day, waiting as Woods marched around the course and up the leaderboard.

Ten years removed from his 14th and most recent major title, in many ways Woods's four-under 66 was, for nine holes at least, a rollicking trip down Memory Lane, given the third round charges that were once his calling card having largely disappeared. Because it's fun to imagine, really, this what if becoming WHAT IF becoming what will it take?

The challenge for the field will be to catch a player so physically and mentally tough that he lifts weights even during major championships. He's wearing red and most certainly feeling confident. Why can't he do it again?

Still, there was enough trouble if you got too aggressive or sloppy, or decided you didn't quite belong in that company. He has won tour events from behind, several from more than 4 strokes.

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