From the Rough

Golf without discretion

Tiger Woods doesn’t know how to follow directions

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Update: Woods apparently ducked a post-round interview with TNT’s Jim Huber. Not good.

When asked to describe his game plan for this week’s British Open prior to today’s first round, Tiger Woods went back to the well to describe the comparisons between Turnberry and Woods’ last Open victory venue, Royal Liverpool.

“I think it’s the same,” Tiger Woods said Tuesday, comparing Liverpool and Turnberry. “You have to be committed to either putting the ball short of the bunkers or carrying them or skirting past them. You have to make sure you really know what you’re doing, especially with the cross winds in some of these fairways. The last three champions here [Tom Watson '77, Greg Norman '86, Nick Price '94] are some of the best ballstrikers.”

At Royal Liverpool, Woods hit one driver all week while and managed to stay out of the bunkers. In what was considered to be a near flawless performance, he walked away with the trophy and proved once again that you don’t have to be long off the tee to win the Claret Jug. Now if only Tiger could’ve followed his own directions regarding his plan of attack at Turnberry.

On a seemingly windless day, Woods went out early and came away looking ragged, posting a one-over 71 that left him six back of Tom Watson. Forget the plan to hit irons off the tee; Tiger hit the driver on multiple occasions. And he paid for it in spades.

The wayward tee-shots at Turnberry forced him to play from a couple of precarious lies that left the world number one frustrated with his lack of consistency. A topped approach shot on the ninth summed up the day perfectly: Tiger just didn’t play his game.

Even with the poor start, Woods came away from the round with high expectations for tomorrow: “I certainly made a few mistakes out there. Realistically I should have shot about one- or two-under par,” Woods said afterwards.

Let’s see if Tiger can follow those words up tomorrow with a round that gets him back into contention.

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Written by Jonathan Wall

07/16/2009 at 3:20 pm

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