After firing a second-round 71, Tiger Woods details effort to ‘go back to what worked’ at Augusta

August 16, 2019

There’s a lot at stake for Tiger Woods at this week’s BMW Championship. Not only is he trying to earn his way into the FedEx Cup finale, the Tour Championship, where he’d be defending his title, he’s also hoping to make a strong case for himself as a captain’s pick for the upcoming Presidents Cup.

After firing back-to-back rounds of 71, Woods will likely need two weekend rounds in the mid-60s to launch himself far enough up the leaderboard to crack into the FedEx Cup top 30.

In a post-round interview after Thursday’s opening-round 71, Woods acknowledged that he is struggling with changes he is trying to incorporate in his swing plane.

“It’s just not sharp,” he said. “I’m trying to make changes in my swing, and it’s just not quite there yet. And so it’s just one of those things. I need reps, and I just haven’t really put in a lot of reps. [I’m] trying to change my plane a little bit, trying to get back to how I kind of had it at Augusta. It was working pretty good there.”

Following his round on Friday, Woods was again asked to expand on his swing-change progress, and he explained the complexities of readying for tournaments that require different shot shapes and trajectories, and why going back to his “Augusta feel” made sense.

“I was trying to get ready for Augusta, that would be the shape of the golf ball would be totally different than I normally would,” Woods said. “That’s one week. Next I’m playing Bethpage and that game won’t work there. So, then, all of a sudden, I play the U.S. Open and Memorial and the British Open. That’s all different shot shapes and shot trajectories and feels. You know, I figured I might as well go back to what worked.”

The other essential element of a good round, of course, is making putts, and Woods has yet to have a really great day on the greens.

“I certainly haven’t made as many putts,” he said. “Putt well and I’ll shoot good scores. I haven’t done that.”

Woods is currently 38th in the FedEx Cup standings, and must finish at 30th or better after this week to qualify for the Tour Championship.

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