Tiger Woods was on pace for a great round on Friday after shooting 3-under through his first seven holes.
Then he stepped on the tee box at No. 17, the famed island green that has wreaked havoc on The Players Championship for years.
Woods put two balls in the water on the par-3, leading to a quadruple-bogey that derailed his front nine. He was forced to grind out some pars with a few birdies on the back nine. Woods signed for a 1-under 71, dropping to 3-under for the tournament. He walked off the course T-26.
After his round, Woods talked about how he feels about the week so far and his disastrous experience Friday on No. 17.
Here’s the best of what Woods had to say Friday:
Happy, not happy this week?
I’m very happy with the way I’ve been grinding around this golf course. I’ve missed a few opportunities to gets up-and-down for birdie. Overall, I think I’ve putted pretty solidly and other than 17 today, I really haven’t done a whole lot wrong. I very easily could be up near that lead, there’s no way I would be leading, but I would be close enough to that lead, given the weekend and the forecast.
Reaction to the two shots on No. 17?
Well, the second wedge shot, not really, I hit it too flat. But the first one I was a bit surprised it went that far. I took something off that wedge and it flew a lot further than I thought. The other guys took a little read off of that.
No. 17 tougher from the tee or drop area?
No, I mean both shots I’m just trying to hit the ball into the slope and just walk away with a 20, 25-footer and move on about my business. As I said, the second one I hit too flat and too hot. But the first one from the regular tee was a good shot, it just flew a little bit too far.
How demoralizing is a hole like No. 17?
Well, I was pretty ticked, no doubt about that, and I was bound and determined to get it all back and get it back to five, and I thought that would have been a hell of a fight. Ended up getting back to three, still was a good fight to get to that point, but as of right now I’m six back, which is definitely doable on this golf course, especially with the weather coming in, and I just need to go out there and put it together this weekend, because right now literally anybody who makes the cut has got a chance to win this tournament.
Consider re-teeing rather than the drop zone?
I did, but I figured I can handle an 80-yard shot and obviously I can’t.
Are you playing the Valspar?
I don’t know, let me go have lunch first.