Tiger Woods apologized on Friday for what he called a prank that some criticized as sexist during the first round of the Genesis Invitational on Thursday.
Woods passed a tampon to his close friend and fellow golfer Justin Thomas after he outdrove Thomas on the ninth hole. Thomas immediately dropped it to the ground, and the two golfers chuckled at the boyish prank. Some criticized Woods for his action, but he said it was not intended to offend anyone and was just two friends having fun. Woods and Thomas often play practical jokes on each other during rounds, and this incident was supposed to be just one of those games. Woods said, “If I offended anybody in any way, shape or form, I’m sorry.”
Tiger Woods Cards 4-Under 67, Best Round to Par Since 2020
Woods was playing in his first PGA Tour official event in almost seven months at the Genesis Invitational. He carded a 3-over 74 in the second round, putting him in danger of missing the cut in a tournament he hosts and has never won. However, he made it to the weekend on the number and turned things around with a fantastic performance on Saturday.
Playing in a field that included 23 of the top 25 players in the world, Woods carded a 4-under 67 in the third round of the Genesis Invitational. He came into the week ranked 1,294th in the world. He had not played in an official PGA Tour event in over seven months. After making the cut on the number, the 15-time major champion moved to 3 under after 54 holes.
Woods’ third-round score tied for the third lowest of the day. Denny McCarthy posted a 7-under 64, and Jon Rahm, who has been on fire lately, was 6 under. Woods’ performance tied his lowest score to par since he carded a 4-under 68 after 18 holes of the Masters in November 2020. He is seeking his first top-25 finish since he tied for ninth at the Farmers Insurance Open in January 2020.
Woods Battles Back after Difficult Second Round
Woods’ performance on Saturday was especially impressive since he had a difficult second round, carding a 3-over 74. He had some issues with his putting on Friday, but he made some adjustments that paid off on Saturday. Woods hit 9 of 14 fairways and 12 of 18 greens, averaging 306.4 yards off the tee. He said he felt good and made some nice adjustments with his putting, which was the thing that held him back on Friday.
Woods made an eagle on the par-5 first hole after his 316-yard drive rolled into the rough. He cut his second shot around a greenside bunker, and his ball stopped 3 feet past the hole. Woods also made a spectacular chip shot from the rough on the par-3 fourth hole, which saved par. His ball stopped a foot from the hole. He made a 12-foot birdie putt on the fifth hole to get to 5 under in the round. On the sixth hole, he added another great chip from the fringe to avoid a bogey.
While Tiger Woods was disappointed that he did not shoot a lower score, he felt good about his performance. He said, “I wanted to get in touch with the leaders today. I was hoping to shoot something a little bit lower than I did just so I could reach out to them hopefully with a low round tomorrow. I might be a little far away.”
Featured Image Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
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