Tiger Woods Open Pairing My Best Day in Golf, Says Nick Dougherty

Tiger Woods Open Pairing My Best Day in Golf, Says Nick Dougherty

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Nick Dougherty lines up his putt as Tiger Woods walks behind him during the third round of the 107th U.S. Open Championship at Oakmont Country Club on June 16, 2007.
Ross Kinnaird

Forget the wins: Nick Dougherty says his best day in golf was playing with Tiger Woods in the third round of the 2007 U.S. Open at Oakmont.

The three-time European tour winner told The Guardian that Oakmont was a challenge despite firing a first-round 68 to take the early lead before closing the week tied for seventh.

But the highlight of his career came when he was paired with Woods for the third round of the tournament and watched the 14-time major winner go to work on one of golf’s toughest tracks.

“He hit 13 of 14 fairways. He hit 17 of 18 greens. It was picture perfect; fading it to right flags, drawing it to left flags,” Dougherty said in an interview. “The American coverage that night was speaking about one of the greatest ever major championship rounds. He was only one shot under that day because he missed everything. He didn’t putt badly but kept grazing the hole. He could have shot 64. Tiger Woods is a superstar to me on the course.”

Dougherty shot a 74 that day and was physically drained by the demands of the course, but it didn’t seem to matter much.

“People ask about my best day in golf. It wasn’t any of the wins,” Dougherty said. “That was my best day in golf; playing with Tiger Woods, third round of the US Open. People win, someone wins every week, whereas playing with a bit of history … That was better than leading the US Open.”