Patrick Cantlay plays a spectacular chip at the Genesis Open

Doug Mendoza
February 19, 2018

For example, he missed the green on seven of the eight par-3s.

Three-time major champion Jordan Spieth posted a four-under-par 67 to earn a share of ninth position at seven under, alongside US PGA Championship victor Justin Thomas (70), reigning PGA Tour Rookie of the Year Xander Schauffele (68), Martin Laird (68) and Ryan Moore (70). But imagine the chaos the well-lubed fans surrounding the infamous par-3 16th at TPC Scottsdale during the Phoenix Open cause, and you get a snapshot of what Woods faces on each and every shot. He registered 1.455 putts per GIR and 3.226 SG: Putting with 25 total putts. "When I get my mind on something, I can focus and do pretty well at the game of golf".

"You've got to know that this golf course is going to make you mess up, the grass, the way the ball bounces on it, you're going to have shots you think are flawless and ended up not ideal", he said.

"He is very close, " said Rory McIlroy, who played with Woods for the first two rounds and also played casually with him over Thanksgiving.

After going out in 2-over 37, Woods birdied the 10th hole to put himself right around the projected cut.

"This golf course, you know you're going to make some mistakes because of the bounces you're going to get on putts and chips and everything, so you just need to stay in there and hopefully the birdies outweigh the bogeys".

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Playing on Friday afternoon, the noise was so loud, McIlroy said, that the first thing he would do after signing his card was take a couple of Advil.

"My wedge game is fine", he said. "That's something that I've been trying to do at home and trying to simulate rounds where I go full bore at it, but it's never the same as in a tournament". "He's obviously not driving it well, he's not hitting the shots that he wants to".

"I'm very pleased. I'm very excited about it", Woods said as darkness settled Friday over Riviera Country Club. "Give him a little bit of time".

With AP Photos.Tiger Woods waited 12 years to get back to Riviera and lasted only two days. "The two tournaments I've played have been really tough tests, " he said of Torrey Pines and Riviera.

Woods, as host of the tourney that benefits his foundation, will stick around for the weekend even though he won't be on the tee sheet.

The four-time major victor said he needed "a couple of Advil" after completing the second round of the Genesis Open, and added that he sympathised with playing partner Tiger Woods who has had to deal with noisy distractions throughout his career.

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