Tiger Woods grinds it out to stay within the hunt at US Open

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PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. — Nineteen years in the past, Tiger Woods made golf look simple when the U.S. Open was performed at Pebble Seashore. On Thursday, it was a grind as Woods wanted a number of clutch par putts simply to remain inside placing distance after the opening spherical of the 119th U.S. Open.

After enjoying the entrance 9 in 1-under, together with a double-bogey on the par-Three fifth, Woods performed the again 9 in even-par, draining putts from so far as 30 toes to maintain his scorecard in purple numbers. He’ll begin the second spherical 5 pictures behind Justin Rose, who fired a 6-under 65 on Thursday.

“It was typical Pebble Seashore the place the primary seven holes you may get it going after which after that you simply’re type of preventing and type of hanging on,” Woods mentioned. “I proved that immediately. I had it going early and needed to combat off by the center a part of the spherical and hung in there with pars. I’m more than happy to shoot below par immediately.”

Woods, who received his 15th main on the Masters, however missed the lower within the PGA Championship at Bethpage, made a 5-footer for birdie on the par-Four fourth gap, however took a double when his tee-shot on the par-Three fifth went method left and bounced off a cart path. He responded with birdies on the par-5 sixth and the par-Three seventh, the place he made a 23-footer.

He made a 30-footer to save lots of par on the par-5 14th, and scrambled out of the bunker to make a 7-footer for par on the 17th. He closed along with his 10th straight par on the 18th after his second shot landed within the bunker left of the inexperienced.

“I didn’t hit my irons as crisp as I’d like,” Woods mentioned. “I attempted to overlook the ball within the appropriate spots and a few occasions the place I had wedges in my hand I used to be simply dumping it into the middle of the inexperienced and shifting on.”

Woods seems significantly better bodily and mentally than he did at Bethpage, the place he regarded drained and rusty. He’ll should play higher than he did Thursday to maintain up with a area that appears able to publish extra low numbers in Friday’s second spherical.

“As I mentioned, I performed the primary seven holes, aside from that dangerous tee shot on 5, and I did what I used to be presupposed to do by these first seven holes,” Woods mentioned. “And after that I used to be simply hanging round and hoping that I may make a birdie right here and there. The one mistake I made was in all probability at 14 attempting to hold that ball again there to the flag, and I clipped it and dumped my ball within the heart of the inexperienced and tried to make my bogey, however occurred to make a putt.”