blackrican23

Woods is back in peak form as Masters arrives

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blackrican23

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Tiger Woods had his lowest finish as a pro at the Masters last year when he tied for 40th. But he carries a renewed confidence into this week’s Masters after winning three times this year and reclaiming his No. 1 world ranking. He served notice yesterday he is ready to claim another Green Jacket.

“I feel comfortable with every aspect of my game,†he said at Augusta National, where the 2013 Masters begins tomorrow. “I feel that I’ve improved and I’ve got more consistent and I think the wins show that. That’s something that I’m proud of. Hopefully, I can continue it this week and the rest of the year.â€

 

Woods returned to the No. 1 spot in golf after capturing wins this year at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral and the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines. He has won six times in the past 12 months after a two-year drought.

 

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He now looks like the guy who won 14 major championships before crashing his SUV into a fire hydrant in his driveway on Thanksgiving night 2009. That led to scandal, divorce and eventual loss of his No. 1 ranking. Having worked so hard to reclaim the top spot, he isn’t taking it for granted.

“There are a lot of players who try to get there and have never been able to do it,†Woods said. “I’ve been able to get there a few times throughout my career. To battle the injuries that I’ve come through and to get through all that and to win enough golf tournaments and to win consistently enough to get to that point is something I’m very proud of.â€

He credits his recent string of success to being healthy physically after suffering a series of neck and leg injuries.

“I couldn’t practice, couldn’t play, sat out major championships and just wasn’t able to do any of the sessions that I needed to do to improve,†Woods said. “And I was making a swing change with Sean [Foley]. All that happened at the same time. So the number one concern was get healthy, get strong enough where I can practice. Once I started to be able to practice, things turned and they turned quickly.â€

He says he has found “balance†in his life between being a golfer, father and new boyfriend of ski champion Lindsey Vonn.

“I think life is all about having a balance,†he said, “and trying to find equilibrium and not getting things one way or the other, and I feel very balanced.â€

Woods, 37, is a four-time Masters champion, but hasn’t won a Green Jacket since 2005, when he beat Chris DiMarco on the first playoff hole. Since then he has finished in the top four five times. But his worst finish as a pro came last year when he tied for 40th after rounds of 72, 75, 72 and 74.

“Obviously, I’m not real happy with the fact that I haven’t won more,†Woods said, “but I’ve been in the mix. I just haven’t gotten it done. But the whole idea is to give myself opportunities, and as of right now, I’m tied for second on the all-time win list here, so that’s not too bad either.â€

 

http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/golf/woods_is_back_in_peak_form_as_masters_pswM2jeWVbjcggRgHouJ9I

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Mofo2

I hear there is some 14 year old Chinese boy that has qualified for the tournament and he has been practising with Tiger!

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blackrican23

I enjoy watching Tiger down the stretch on a lazy sunday afternoon

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Mofo2

He is a shadow of his former self, I gues all the secret shagging fuelled him :D

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GRIM

Woods got a new gf so he might me a bit pumped and motivated

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blackrican23

his putting is better than ever, his drive accuracy is still arwy but his iron game is still tiger woods,  and now healthy , shadow of himself is stretching it

 

 

masters this weekend lets see tiger win a 5th green jacket and pass palmer

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Mofo2

His driving wasn't his main issue, his putting had gone to shit as had his work around the green!

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blackrican23

you must not have been watching him recently , his putting has been impeccable

 

 

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Putting: It Apparently Matters
Tour Data Suggest Tiger Woods Owes His Comeback to One Basic Skill—Sinking Putts

 

 

Tiger Woods is about to let you down again. Not necessarily on the golf course, mind you—but in the realm of inspiring redemption narratives.

If he'd been thinking cinematically, the disgraced golf legend could have clawed back to the top of the sport with the intervention of a Rasputin-like swing guru (his new coach, Sean Foley, for instance) or from the calming influence of a flaxen-haired athletic muse and true love (maybe his new girlfriend, the skier Lindsey Vonn).

But the humdrum truth of the matter is that Tiger Woods has won three tournaments this year and reclaimed the top spot in the World Golf Rankings for a pretty pedestrian reason: He's been sinking more putts.

 

This season, Woods has hit 67% of greens in regulation, which is about flat with 67.6% last year. His average drive has travelled 295 yards in 2013 compared with 297.4 last year. He's hit 54.9% of fairways this season (No. 144 on the PGA Tour) compared with 63.1% last season (he was No. 66). His approach shots are landing on average 34 feet, eight inches from the hole this season compared with 33 feet, six

 

But when Woods pulls his putter out of his bag, he morphs into George Archer or Ben Crenshaw—two of the greatest putters of all time. He's averaging 8.19 one-putts per round, compared with 7.2 last season, moving his ranking from 38th to 11th in that category. He has one-putted 131 holes this season through 17 rounds with an average distance of seven feet, 10 inches. And in the all-important metric of strokes gained through putting, which measures a player's proficiency at various distances compared to his competitors, Woods is the best on the PGA Tour, gaining 1.476 strokes on the field each round. Last year he was No. 35 in this category, gaining just .33 strokes per round.

"Most people don't look at the numbers," said Hank Haney, Woods's former coach, who now coaches swimmer Michael Phelps on the Golf Channel's "The Haney Project." But "that's what the numbers say. Tiger Woods is an unbelievably talented golfer. If he putts well, it's game over."

Putting is golf's darkest art, a skill that confounds and mystifies. It requires a combination of acuity with physics, topography and touch that's rare in sports. "It's not difficult, but it's very complex," said Dave Pelz, the former aerospace engineer turned short-game guru. "You can do five or six things right, but if you do one thing wrong you miss."

Golfers can win if they're inconsistent off the tee or from the fairway. Whack a tee shot into the gorse or an approach into the sand and there's still a chance to recover. But it's nearly impossible to win a tournament with a wandering putter, as a missed putt always costs the golfer a stroke.

Woods's agent, Mark Steinberg, chalked his client's improved putting up to the fact that he's finally comfortable with his new swing. Steinberg said Woods spent so many hours rehabbing his injured knee and trying to adjust to the stronger grip his new swing requires—he keeps his arms closer to his body and shifts his weight to his left when club meets ball—that he didn't have much time to practice putts. "Changing a golf swing requires a crazy amount of repetitions," Steinberg said. When Woods got healthy, he added, "he got his swing grooved and that allowed him to focus again on his short game."

Woods also benefitted from a lesson with fellow golfer Steve Stricker, on the practice green at the Doral Resort and Spa last month before the WGC Cadillac Championship. Stricker, one of the game's best putters, told Woods to keep his hands more in line with the ball. Woods then averaged just 25 putts per round and won the tournament.

That chat, and the extra putting practice, should continue to pay dividends this week at the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club, where Woods is poised to resume his quest for a 15th major championship (18 will tie Jack Nicklaus's record).

Steinberg and others who have watched Woods say his putting stroke hasn't changed. It still has the same slight arc he developed with his dad when he was a toddler. Haney said when Woods works on his swing he focuses on new adjustments. When he works on putting, it's about getting back to what he has always done.

Unlike most shots, in which the golfer largely controls the flight of the ball through the air, a putt's terrestrial trajectory can be altered by a lot more variables—the speed of the green, the contours of the earth, a spike mark, or any little object that might be in the ball's path.

As a result, putting successfully is more about having a consistent stroke that makes the ball behave reliably no matter what bizarre impediments the golf Gods throw up.

"When pros aren't putting well they're trying to force the ball into the hole instead of rolling the ball down their line and letting the hole catch it," said Kevin Weeks, another notable short-game guru.

For many golfers, reading a putting green is one of the weakest parts of their game. Pelz has tested this with a machine that shows the pros usually misjudge the line and speed needed to put a ball in the hole. Lack of practice exacerbates the mistakes because players lose the touch that comes with a perfectly repeatable stroke.

"With Tiger, after his bad year he started with a new teacher and then he spent 95% of his time on his new swing and not with his putter," Pelz said. "Do that and you start to lose your feel and your speed and once that goes you start losing your lines because you're questioning your reads. Then you're in big trouble."

It's worth mentioning that Woods's putter has had a little help. He's undoubtedly better from the rough this season, where his shots are landing 43 feet, four inches from the hole, compared with 48 feet, seven inches last season. But he's also had more practice from the rough, averaging 3.3 shots per round from the tall stuff compared with 2.4 swings per round from there last season.

In the end, tapping putts for hours may be the most boring form of practice in golf—and might seem far more tedious and ineffectual than a new love match or a seemingly sweet new swing that helps keep a balky knee healthy.

For Woods now, though, boring is the path to dominance.

 

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323550604578410942397369774.html

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Mofo2

I was merely pointing out the main part of his game that was in trouble was his putting, if he has improved his form, its because that's the part that was most seriously Affecting his game and it is now corrected!

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blackrican23

Did you see that Shot on 15 ?

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Mofo2

No mate, I got sidetracked and missed the golf, he has recovered his form but I guess today will be the day we see how well he can position himself going into the last 18.....incidentally I am a 12 handicap golfer!

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blackrican23

Tiger Woods penalized 2 shots

 

 

 

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Tiger Woods got a bad break Friday in the second round of the Masters when his approach shot to the 15th green bounced off the flagstick and into the water.

He also took a bad drop, leading to a two-stroke penalty that was levied on Saturday morning.

Woods was not disqualified because of a relatively recent rule that allows the rules committee discretion when it comes to violations reported after the fact. Masters officials reviewed the drop on Saturday morning, applying the revision to "Decision 33-7/4.5", which, according to the USGA's website, addresses "the situation where a player is not aware he has breached a Rule because of facts that he did not know and could not reasonably have discovered prior to returning his score card.

"Under this revised decision and at the discretion of the Committee, the player still receives the penalty associated with the breach of the underlying Rule, but is not disqualified."

Woods had 87 yards to the hole for his third shot.

Under Rule 26-1, Woods had three options at the yellow-staked (not lateral) hazard, which is a pond that fronts the green:

• He could have played from a designated drop area, which he chose not to do because he did not like the lie.

• He could drop the ball, keeping the point where it last crossed the margin of the water between the hole and the spot on which the ball would be dropped. Since the ball entered the water well left of Woods' position from the fairway, it would seem he did not choose this option -- which would have allowed him to drop on a straight line as far back as he wanted.

• Or, he could return to the original spot from which he played, and drop "as nearly as possible,'' from where he played the third shot.

This is the option Woods took, and the question appeared to be: Did Woods drop the ball as near as possible to his original spot?

After the round, Woods said: "I went back to where I played it from, but I went 2 yards further back and I took, tried to take 2 yards off the shot of what I felt I hit.''

On a CBS-TV highlights show late Friday night, analyst David Feherty showed the replay and questioned the legality of the drop.

 

 

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Mofo2

If the ruling is disqualification I guess it helps to be called Tiger!

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blackrican23

No he's covered under New rule 33

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Mofo2

There has been questions asked about the validity of the rule application, seems odd to me!

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blackrican23

Tiger Recovers From Penalty

 

 

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Tiger Woods admitted he made a mistake, was fine with the two-stroke penalty, and never considered withdrawing from the Masters.

 

Now he'd like to get about the business of trying to win his fifth green jacket.


After a tumultuous day that saw Woods wake up to the news that his status in the tournament was in question, getting a reprieve from disqualification due to a rarely invoked rule (but having two strokes added to his score), Woods was looking forward to Sunday's final round, which finds him four strokes back of leaders Brandt Snedeker and Angel Cabrera.

 

 

"It started off obviously different, but I'm right there in the ballgame," Woods said after a 2-under-par 70 at Augusta National left him in a tie for seventh place.

Adam Scott, Marc Leishman, Jason Day and Matt Kuchar are also ahead of Woods, who is tied with Tim Clark.

"As of right now, I'm four back with a great shot to win this championship," Woods said immediately after his round.

That possibility appeared in question early Saturday morning, when television replays and social media conversation heightened about the drop Woods took on the 15th hole during Friday's second round.

Having just clanged his approach shot off the flagstick and into the water, Woods chose the option to drop from his original hitting spot. However, he later told reporters he did so two yards behind where he had just hit.

Those media interviews raised the concerns of the Masters rules committee, led by chairman Fred Ridley, who earlier had reviewed tape of Woods' drop and deemed it within the rules. That is why he said nothing to Woods when he signed his Friday scorecard.

In retrospect, Woods appeared confused over the rules afforded him in such a situation: Play from a drop area (which he declined to do), play from a line going backward from where the ball entered the hazard or play from the original spot.

Woods seemingly tried to do a combination of the latter two, although he admitted the circumstances left him a bit dazed.

 

I wasn't even really thinking," Woods said. "I was still a little ticked at what happened, and I was just trying to figure out, 'OK, I need to take some yardage off this shot,' and that's all I was thinking about was trying to make sure I took some yardage off of it, and evidently it was pretty obvious, I didn't drop in the right spot."

That should have meant a two-stroke penalty and a triple-bogey 8. But Woods wrote down a bogey 6 after a great up-and-down, then bogeyed the final hole and signed for what he thought was a 71.

During this time, Ridley said, the Masters rules committee became aware of a concern that Woods had violated the drop rules via a television viewer. They looked at video and determined he was OK, never mentioning it. When the committee revisited the issue later, they determined that Woods had violated Rule 26 -- but that Rule 33-7 also should be invoked.

That rule saves a player from disqualification in the event he signed his scorecard without the committee bringing forth the proper information.

"Tiger was entitled to have the benefit of that decision when he signed his scorecard," Ridley said. "And to me it would have been grossly unfair to Tiger to have disqualified him after our committee had made that decision."

The ruling sparked a good bit of conversation -- including many players and commentators calling for Woods to withdraw or disqualify himself. Woods said he never considered that option.

"Under the rules of golf, I can play," he said. "I was able to go out there and compete and play. ... Evidently this is the (Padraig) Harrington rule, I guess. If this happened a year or two ago, I wouldn't have the opportunity to play. But the rules have changed, and under the rules of golf, I was able to play."

Actually, Woods -- and many others -- were misinformed. The Harrington rule, which is 33-7/4.5, was added two years ago but didn't apply in this case. The broader rule allows a committee the leeway to void a disqualification -- although it's rarely invoked.

Nonetheless, several came to Woods' defense. Graeme McDowell did so on Twitter. Defending Masters champion Bubba Watson said spectators or fans -- as happened in this case originally -- should not be allowed to call in rules violations. Woods' friend, Steve Stricker, also thinks the ruling was just.

"The way it all played out, they got it right," he said. "I don't think he should have been DQ'd, although he did take an illegal drop. But everybody knew about it before he signed the card. That's why they waived the DQ part of it."

Had Woods not been assessed the penalty, he would enter Sunday's round just two shots out of the lead.

Either way, he will have to do something he's never done -- come from behind to win a major championship. All 14 of Woods' major victories occurred with him at least sharing the 54-hole lead. Seven of his PGA Tour wins -- the last at the 2012 Memorial -- have come after deficits of three strokes or more.

 

Woods joked that it's "never good" when he has a text from his agent, Mark Steinberg, so early in the morning. He was alerted to the issues on his drop on No. 15, then drove to Augusta National to meet with Ridley.

After the situation was resolved, Woods went back to his rental home.

"Normal," he said. "I went to the gym. Got all activated and ready to go, and once I came to the golf course, I was ready to play."

He birdied the first hole Saturday but was unable to get much going on the front side, making another birdie at the sixth, but bogeys at the fourth and ninth. After another bogey at the 11th, Woods birdied the 12th and 13th holes, then gave himself a 10-foot eagle try at Friday's troublesome 15th hole, two-putting for birdie.

Woods then made nice par saves at each of the final three holes, twice getting up-and-down from bunkers.

Overall, Woods had his shaky moments. He hit just six fairways and 11 greens. He needed 28 putts, three times missing from inside 4 feet, including a 2-footer at the eighth hole.

Woods does have a few historical notes going for him. Four of the last six Masters winners trailed after 54 holes. And just one of the last four and just four of the last 15 major winners overall went on to win.

 

http://espn.go.com/golf/masters13/story/_/id/9168163/2013-masters-penalized-tiger-woods-right-ballgame-70

 

 

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Mofo2

Those mistakes have always resulted in disqualification, I guess it can happen!

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