Tiger Woods admitted it was
Tiger Woods reflected on a “fun” opening round of the Farmers Insurance Open and expressed his delight at being back in PGA Tour competition.
With barely any tournament golf over the last two years blighted by a series of back problems, Woods fired a level-par 72 on the South Course at Torrey Pines – four shots lower than his scrappy effort 12 months ago which led to an aborted comeback.
Looking noticeably fitter and more mobile than last year following spinal fusion surgery, Woods attributed his slow start to a touch of rust as he bogeyed two of the first five holes, but he dropped only one further shot while making three birdies.
Woods did admit he needs to improve his iron-play in particular after rarely knocking his approaches inside 20 feet, although he was agonisingly close to celebrating a hole-in-one after shaving the cup with his tee shot at the 190-yard 16th.
Highlights from Tiger Woods' first official PGA Tour round for a year as he recovered from a nervy start to finish on level par at the Farmers Insurance Open.
“It was fun to compete again. It was fun to be out there,” said the 42-year-old, an eight-time champion at Torrey Pines including his 2008 US Open victory. “I still feel the same excitement, the same nerves, and it was fun to feel the competitive rush again, have a scorecard in my hand and try and post a number
“But I didn’t hit anything close, didn’t give myself a lot of looks and consequently didn’t have a lot of chances for birdies. I’ve got to hit my irons better than I did today. It’s hard to make a lot of birdies when you don’t give yourself a lot of looks.
“The greens were bumpy and I hit a lot of good putts. I missed one at 13, but I hit a lot of good ones, which is good, it’s a good sign going into tomorrow.
“Hopefully, I’ll drive a little better, get my irons obviously a lot closer and we get the better of the two greens tomorrow. So we’ll see what happens.”
Woods revealed he did not know how close he had come to an ace at the 16th as he could not see the bottom of the pin from the tee.
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“It felt good, looked good, and then we were listening for some noise,” added Woods, who also admitted he was surprised by the overall quality of the scoring across both courses.
“I didn’t think there were going to be that many good scores out there,” he said. “I mean I’m in over 80th spot and shot even par.”