Tiger Woods got off to a good start in his first WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play appearance since 2013, winning his opening match against Aaron Wise 3-up on Wednesday.
The Big Cat’s second match on Thursday against Brandt Snedeker turned out to be a different story.
It was a good battle, with Woods and Snedeker tying the first two holes with pars.
Snedeker then claimed the first lead of the day, draining a 13-foot putt for birdie on the 430-yard par-4 third hole.
Woods brought the match back to all square with a par on the fourth hole when Snedeker hit his tee shot into the native area in front of the green and made bogey.
Both players hit the green on the driveable par-4 fifth hole and two-putted for birdie to remain tied. Snedeker then birdied Nos. 6 and 7 to go 2-up.
Woods answered by draining a 25-foot birdie putt on on the eighth hole to cut Snedeker’s lead to 1-up, and both players parred the ninth hole to maintain Snedeker’s lead at the halfway point.
Three more pars followed on Nos. 10, 11 and 12, and then Woods got into some trouble.
After hitting his tee shot into the left-side water, his recovery shot went over the green and he failed to get it up and down, settling for a double bogey. Snedeker made bogey, but it was enough to go 2-up with five holes to play.
Woods fought back with a beautiful 170-yard approach to two feet on the 14th hole, which he drained for birdie to get back to 1-down.
Tiger Woods with a perfect putt.
He knew this one was in. ? pic.twitter.com/HvMA0HNZl8
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) March 28, 2019
Both players parred the par-4 15th hole, but an errant drive into the left-side rough on No. 16 proved costly for Tiger, setting up a bogey. Snedeker parred and went 2-up with two holes to play.
When Woods failed to win the 17th hole (he missed his 23-footer for birdie), the match was over, and Snedeker triumphed, 2&1.
Woods’s record is now 1-1-0 (one point) while Snedeker’s in 1-0-1 — he tied his match with Patrick Cantlay on Wednesday — which is worth 1.5 points.
Cantlay also won his Thursday match against Aaron Wise, so he too is 1-0-1 with 1.5 points.
Only one player moves on from each group into the round of 16. In order for Tiger to continue, he will need to win his Friday match against Cantlay, and Wise will need to beat Snedeker.
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