A 90 per cent shot? Tiger seeks to maintain awesome Sunday record

Randy Kelley
March 12, 2018

Woods will surely fancy his chances of claiming his 80th PGA Tour title on Sunday, with unheralded rookie Conners - who again impressed with a 68 - the only man above him on the leaderboard.

The 14-time Major victor then went into a share of the lead with a birdie at the par-5 fifth hole before the highlight of his round when he chipped-in from some 30-feet behind the flag at the uphill par-4 ninth hole, and with the third birdie of his round momentarily taking Woods into the lead.

Woods is tied in second place at eight-under with England's Justin Rose (66) and American Brandt Snedeker (67) and with Woods to be again paired with Snedeker over the final day as he was in today's third round.

"I've played myself right there into contention so it should be a fun Sunday", Woods said.

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Whatever the outcome, Woods has left no doubt in his past two events that he is destined for further glory, as long as his body holds up and excitement for next month's Masters is going into overdrive. I'm excited. I've been ready to go. Then he made his major mistake of the day, hitting over the green at the 13th, leaving him with a almost impossible chip that he left in a bunker.

Former world number one Woods, playing his fourth US PGA Tour event since returning in January from spinal fusion surgery last April, fired a three-under par 68 for a four-under total of 138. "I know it's packed up there, but at least I got a shot".

"It feels like it's back to "12 or "13", said Joe LaCava, Woods" caddie since 2011".

This is the 70th time Woods will be tied or within one of the lead entering the final round; he won on 62 of those occasions. "I just need to execute". I made that one. He twice matched birdies with Woods with 12-foot putts, and after falling two shots behind and the crowd getting louder by the hole for Woods, Snedeker battled back with a pair of birdies for a 67.

Woods has been slowed by mistakes, some leading to big numbers the last time he played at the Honda Classic. "I did a lot of guessing - guessed pretty good, also got fooled a few times". I've got a shot going into tomorrow.

"The environment was incredible", Woods said of the boisterous gallery that followed him.

It was a reminder that an entire generation of golfers - from Jordan Spieth to Jon Rahm to Justin Thomas, and to the great (this week) Corey Conners himself - has come of age not knowing what it feels like to be sucked into the black hole of a Tiger Woods weekend charge, when the rest of the sport's collective gravity is no match for his.

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