Woods Hits Better At The Australian Masters, To Defend Title
First he claimed that it was probably the highest score he could have shot in the first round and then would lead the Australian trio at home. World number two Tiger Woods made a superb first round at the Australian Masters, opening the competition with a 2-under 69 which gives him lot of confidence for defending the title at Victoria Golf Club. Tiger, whose 281-week hegemony has been broken by Lee Westwood last month, made a bogey and other three birdies to finish four shots ahead of Aussies Daniel Gaunt, Adam Bland and Alistair Presnell.
Woods, who missed two greens in regulation, claimed 19 putts on the nine but then had to hole a seven-foot par putt on the last hole in order to avoid his second bogey. Better shots are already noticed in his play. “I’m probably hitting the ball better for stretches of six or seven holes but nothing like this for the entire day. I really hit it good today,” said Tiger who also added that he feels he’s playing better than he did China and there he didn’t play too bad. As for the Aussies, Presnell and Bland both shot 6-under 65. Meanwhile, Geoff Ogilvy finished his first round with a 72. Winner of the PGA Tour Andre Stolz groups with the Australian trio. Woods is now looking for the first title of the season, the American having not won one since last year when he collected his 82nd in career. He tried though to go higher as possible at Victoria, looking birdies on the par-four first and par-three fourth.
However, Woods knew something was missing from finishing the round in a perfect way. And that were the putts, which if he could have holed few more, it could have been ‘easily four, six, under… but I’m right there’. Later on, Sergio Garcia started the Masters with a double bogey to finish with 73, while Camilo Villegas ended with a 71. Finally, Robert Allenby combined seven bogeys with five birdies to be a further stroke back on two over.
Wood, Kim share top spot at Serapong
Moving to Singapore, Chris Wood shares the Open leadership with South Korean Kim Bi-o. The English finished the first round with an eight-under-par 63 to get the top spot of the $6 million tournament that gathers 108 players. Just hours after the start, the play has been postponed due to heavy rain as Ian Poulter, who is the defending champion in Singapore, Martin Kaymer and Graeme McDowell, few of the main contenders for the trophy, were forced to wait until late afternoon for making their appearances.
As for the South Korean, the 20-year-old Kim finished the round with eight birdies, but he also other four from inside 10 feet. Champion Phil Mickelson, who just announced his presence at the Abu Dhabi tour in January, finished with a four-under-par 67. Finally, Mc Dowell, Nick Dougherty and South Korean Kang-Kyung-nam are the only ones among top 23 to be part of the more demanding Singaporean scheme.11