Tiger Woods makes majors vow as putting woes extend barren run

Tiger Woods vows to have a more impressive showing in the coming days after struggling in the opening round of the PGA Championship, alongside Keegan Bradley and Adam Scott

Tiger Woods is looking for answers after the first round of the PGA Championship (

Image: Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Tiger Woods three-putted his last two holes at the PGA Championship on Thursday to extend his run of failing to break par in the opening round of any tournament to 455 days.

The 15-time Major champion had battled into the red numbers by draining a 13-foot birdie putt on No.7 – his 16th hole. But the winner at Valhalla in 2000 then raced a birdie putt on No.8 past the hole and missed the return.

And the American superstar repeated the sin at his final hole when this time he left his first putt seven feet short to card a one-over 72. He sat 10 shots off the clubhouse lead. “It wasn’t the way I like to finish off rounds,” said the world No. 807. “I three-whipped the last two holes. Bad speed on 8; whipped it past the hole. And 9, hit it short.

“Hit it off the heel of the putt and blocked the second one. So it wasn’t very good on the last two holes. Long way to go. Let’s see what happens.”

Woods, 48 and sporting a greying goatee, last broke par on the opening day at the Genesis Invitational in February 2023. This is only his fifth event since – and his first since making his record 24th consecutive cut at the Masters last month. He started slowly by bogeying the par-three 11th when he found thick rough off the tee and chipped into a greenside bunker.

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Tiger Woods has been struggling with his shot at the PGA Championship ( Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

“It took me probably three holes to get back into competitive flow again and get a feel for hitting the ball out there in competition, adrenaline, temperatures, green speeds,” he said. “These are all things that normally I adjust to very quickly, and it just took me a few holes to get into it. I am getting stronger for sure. It’s just that I just don’t play a whole lot of competitive rounds.”

Playing in a group with Keegan Bradley and Adam Scott, it took 15 holes for all three Majors champions to hit the fairway on the same hole. The 2011 US PGA winner Bradley made three birdies in his closing six holes for a 69. But the 2013 Masters champion Scott made 17 pars and one bogey in his 72.

On the other hand, Xander Schauffele had an opening day to remember. After falling to Rory McIlroy at the Wells Fargo Championship a week ago, the American carded a nine-under-par 62 at Valhalla.

That was the lowest round in U.S. PGA history, equaling the best 18-hole score for the four major events. Despite having an incredible opening round, Schauffele is not putting too much stoke on his performance, instead focusing on what lies ahead.

“It was a great start but we still have three rounds to play. We got put on the clock actually as we made the turn,” he said. “I kinda got in a rhythm and had nobody ahead of us and then just got the ball rolling.”

Woods, Bradley and Scott all will look to have better showings in the coming days. Meanwhile, Schauffle will hope to have the same luck for the rest of the PGA Championship.

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