Tiger Woods encouraged by return to competitive action at Congressional
Last Updated: 28/06/14 1:44pm
Tiger Woods insisted he was encouraged by his return to tournament golf despite missing the halfway cut at the Quicken Loans National.
The tournament host added an error-strewn 75 to his opening 74 to finish on seven over par at Congressional, four shots outside the cut mark.
Playing in his first event since undergoing back surgery in March, Woods briefly raised hopes of making the weekend when he birdied the ninth and 10th to get to four over.
But he then bogeyed the next four holes as he missed the cut for the first time in 27 starts, although he declared afterwards that he was delighted to have returned to action ahead of schedule.
"I am really encouraged by what happened this week," he said afterwards. "I missed the cut by four shots, that's a lot, but what I was able to do physically and the speed I had and the distance I was hitting the golf ball again, I hadn't done that in a very long time.
Back in action
"I needed to get back into competitive feel, to hit shots and shake some stuff off and see how things were. I came back four weeks earlier than we thought I could, but I've had no setbacks. I got my feel for playing tournament golf.
“I made a ton of simple mistakes, misjudging things and missing shots on the wrong sides, and I didn’t get up and down on a lot of simple shots. But those are little things I can correct, which is nice.”
Woods was also pleased to get through the two rounds without suffering any pain in his back, although he was disappointed that his short-game was not yet up to scratch.
“The thing I was worried about most was hitting driver,” he added. “But I roasted them mostly, the last two days I hit driver really well.
“The short-game was off. I’ve been practising on Bermuda grass, I even grew the rough up at my house, but when you come here and play ryegrass it’s totally different and it showed.
“I probably should have spent more time on the chipping green than I did, but that’s the way it goes.”
Woods felt he had a good chance to scrape in for the weekend before the tough 11th – the toughest hole on the course – scuppered his momentum.
“I had a couple of simple holes, but I just had to get past the 11th,” he said. “That’s a really tough tee shot and a tough hole, period.
“If I could get the ball on the fairway there I figured I could probably have a decent shot into the pin, but I lost it right. I hit a really good wedge shot for my third, but the wind just didn’t move it at all.
“It felt like a lot of times I was a yard off here and there and that’s obviously what makes the difference between going one way or the other.”
Watch the third round of the Quicken Loans National from 6pm on Sky Sports 4.