Hoffman leads, but Tiger left smiling again

02 December, 2017, 00:45 | Author: Douglas Reid
  • Tiger Woods tries to drive the 7th green during the pro-am for the Hero World Challenge at Albany Golf Club in Nassau Bahamas on Wednesday Nov. 29 2017. Woods is playing for the first time since back surgery in April

The eagle at the par-5 No. 9 hole got Woods to 8 under for the tournament and moved him one shot ahead of Charley Hoffman and Tommy Fleetwood at the time.

Five more pars followed but on the 18th Woods' tee-shot found the sand bordering the fairway, forcing him to hack out and leaving him with a hard up and down to save par, which he duly failed.

It was not a smooth ride though all the way as Woods soon found out.

On the back nine, he picked up three more birdies before a bogey on the 15th pegged him back again. "I've still got a long way to go", added Woods, who also missed the entire 2015-2016 season.

"I didn't know what I could do".

"The only thing I struggled with was the speed of the greens".

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"I'm just getting back".

Fresh from winning the European Tour's Race to Dubai title, Fleetwood - who arrived here only on Tuesday after travelling to six countries in last 10 weeks - came up with a brilliant show in a star-studded field.

"I hadn't played in a while after some of the difficulties I've been through". This round featured five birdies and even included a signature Tiger fist pump (early in the round when he saved par with a putt from just off the green at the par-4 fourth).

The back nine, as he admitted himself, was a little disappointing, with just one birdie coming his way at the par five 11th. "They were a foot faster than yesterday, they were really dry and rolling out".

Twice runner-up Henrik Stenson was tied 12th at two-under 70, while holder Hideki Matsuyama was tied 14th at 1-under.

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