Calm down, everyone. The wise Ernie Els didn’t mean any disrespect, rather he pointed out the facts. After Tiger Woods played beautifully to beat Aaron Baddeley 4&3 in the Presidents Cup singles, many have proclaimed that Tiger is on pace to return to his pre-hydrant-era form. During Els’ presser at the South African Open, he was asked his thoughts on Tiger’s “comeback,” to which he replied:
“I don’t know if he made that strong a comeback, he only won two out of five matche,” said Els. “I think a strong Presidents Cup would be Jim Furyk (who won all five matches).
“I know he (Tiger) won his singles match, but by then things were basically over.
“You know, two out of five, it’s better than one out of five,” said Els, a reference to his own record at Royal Melbourne.
Tiger’s ballstriking and swing looked increasingly better with each “rep” in Australia. While he was average at best in the first session of the Presidents Cup, he continued to improve and then the putts finally dropped in Sunday singles.
The previous week Tiger finished third at the Australian Open at The Lakes. Thing is, he shot a lackluster 75 after he held the 36-hole lead. And though he redeemed himself in the final round to finish two strokes behind champion Greg Chalmers, he started from too far behind to really be considered a factor.
Until Tiger wins, which he hasn’t done in over two years, and contends regularly every week he tees it up, I don’t consider that he’s “back” — and it doesn’t sound like Els will, either.