Birdie-birdie finish lifts Woods at Honda Classic

Updated: 03 March 2012 12:29 IST

A birdie-birdie finish lifted Tiger Woods to a two-under par 68 on Friday, ensuring the former world number one will be around for the weekend at the Honda Classic.

Birdie-birdie finish lifts Woods at Honda Classic

Palm Beach Gardens, Florida:

A birdie-birdie finish lifted Tiger Woods to a two-under par 68 on Friday, ensuring the former world number one will be around for the weekend at the Honda Classic.

Woods, a 14-time major champion who is without a tour-level victory in more than two years, was at one-under 139, seven shots off the lead held by England's Justin Rose and Tom Gillis.

But he was in better shape than he had been after a one-over 71 in the first round at the PGA National.

It wasn't all smooth sailing on Friday, as Woods delivered a round that included five birdies, one bogey and a double-bogey at the par-three fifth hole.

He said he didn't actually strike the ball as well as he did the day before.

"I got it going, lost it, got it going, lost it and then got it going," Woods said. "It was a little bit of a fight today - probably the worst I've hit the ball in months."

Woods, who teed off on the 10th hole, was at even par for the round when he arrived at the eighth, where he drained a six-foot putt for birdie.

At the ninth he made a 10-footer.

"I didn't really have it today," Woods said. "But I scored. That's something I can take out of the round. I know I putted a lot better today. I finally got putts to the hole, and that was kind of the goal today, not leave one putt short."

Woods escaped with a birdie at the par-four fourth despite an errant tee shot that hit a spectator.

At the par-five fifth he was less lucky, taking a double-bogey after finding the water off the tee.

His tee shot on the sixth also had spectators ducking, but he saved par with a six-foot putt.

"I figured something out at the very end, the last four holes, after the tee shot I hit on six," he said.

"Unfortunately, it took me that long to figure it out. But once I figured it out, I hit some good shots coming in."

Despite his improved scoring on Friday, Woods wasn't able to build the kind of momentum that saw unheralded Brian Harman set a course-record 61.

Three other players had matched the previous record of 64 on Friday before Harman completed his round.

Gillis and Rose were just one shot in front of Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy and Dicky Pride, with Harman, Vaughn Taylor and Jimmy Walker sharing fifth on 134.

Woods's score put him in a tie for 31st.

Topics : Golf Rory McIlroy Honda Justin Rose Tom Gillis Tiger Woods
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