SAN FRANCISCO – The process that Tiger Woods goes through to play racing golf is not described in detail, but it is understood to involve more than a few fingertips and random swings in the range of the car.
Woods is usually awake a few hours ahead of his time, taking a warm-up workout and visiting with a trainer, usually to do neck and back work.
Because he no longer travels with his physical training specialist, Woods often relies on coaches provided by the PGA Tour or, in the case of this week’s PGA Championship, those located at TPC Harding Park.
So it shows that during one of the days of practice round before the PGA Championship, Woods felt good enough to give up the stop while preparing for the tournament, a pleasant surprise for him in his tough battle.
Great deal? Maybe not. But for a guy who makes news because he changed claimants, Woods doing it within a week of touring without any physical issues is something to note.
This could be the biggest rise for Woods after his tie for 37th in the PGA Championship, where he shot a final 67 round, made a few more hits and generally left San Francisco with a better view. brighter than the uncertain, misty sky portrayed.
“For me, I always see health,” said Joe LaCava, Woods box. “I think he feels good and looks healthy. That’s great for me. If he’m feeling and looking healthy, I know he can play. There were a lot of good quality discs, and [Sunday], we had easier conditions, but he hit a lot of handcuff shots, which I always love to see. ”
Woods clearly has work to do. He struggled in the greens, had trouble getting the ball on the road constantly, and was not his usual stellar self with his iron game – yet he still ended up in principle, turning it back to what it should have been a really bad round on Saturday at a 72, and was able to leave Harding Park with a lot to build.
But everything goes back to his health. He now expects a tight stretch, some of which explain why he did not play more up to this point. Woods has this holiday week before the start of the FedEx Cup Football Games with the Northern Trust at TPC Boston on August 20th.
In 47th place in the FedEx Cup standings, Woods cannot afford to miss that tournament if he intends to go to Atlanta for the Championship Tour, where he won in 2018 for his 80th PGA Tour victory. . Woods has 604 points – with 500 of them coming from his victory in October at the Zozo Championship in Japan.
That means the possibility that he will play a few weeks in a row, something he has not done since the Hero World Challenge and the Presidents Cup in December. And in that Presidential Cup, he was able to spend a day because of his stiff back.
“We’ve been training for this,” Woods said. “Trying to strengthen my strength and patience, this ability to make sure I can handle that kind of workload. We knew I once started playing again when I got involved in Memorial that it would be a load hard work, and my training sessions we have been pushing it hard enough, making sure I get my strength and endurance.
“It will not be any different. We will make it very difficult to make sure I can stay strong and have the stamina to move on.”
That’s all well and good, but there’s still the issue of Woods playing. He has only played twice in the nine weeks the PGA Tour returns from forced leave due to the coronavirus pandemic. Now he could play potentially four times in five weeks, including the US Open.
“Some work needs to be done,” LaCava said. “He knows it. He has to tighten up his short game a bit, work on that house. You just keep working on it. To me, it’s just a lack of golf on the tournament, you know what i mean? you can not copy it at home.I understand.He does not play those events and would not add tournaments.He was stuck during the virus, so I get it.It is not a complaint, just a “But I just think he needs more repetition at this point.”
Woods is likely to take them and it will be a balancing act. He wants to make it to the Championship Championship, but he seemed unaware that there is only one week break between him and the US Open planned. He needs to play, but he does not need to play much.
And he has to work on his game in the areas that put the most stress on his back – placement, bunker game, wedge shots.
Getting used to different surfaces and placement speeds requires extensive practice, one of the reasons he went to a longer confusion. The bunkers caused trouble for everyone in Harding Park and Woods who converted only 2 of the 11 chances to escape was partly because of this and the placement. And Woods remains more mediocre at best when it comes to hitting wedge shots, with his approaches averaging 42 feet for his hole distance from 100 to 125 yards.
Woods went to a different model of Scotty Cameron kisser that he has been used to for most of his career with mixed results; his troubles had more to do with green speeds and to adapt to them than fines. And he said working with a longer dish helps him practice longer.
“Hopefully there will be at least two more tournaments to enter the winner circle,” LaCava said. “He has won a victory this season [Japan], but he would like to have one in the calendar year. He has only played four times [in 2020]. To me, not so much the Tourism Championship – that would be a bonus at this point – it just gives us two more chances to win a tournament. This is what we are looking for. ”
Of course, Woods and LaCava are looking beyond the FedEx play-off. Open US is next month. The master is scheduled for November. In the middle, there is a defense for the title Zozo, likely in a country to be transferred to the United States.
There is a lot of golf to play. How much of it – and how effective it can be – are big questions for Woods.