Tiger Woods couldn’t make a putt to save his life on Thursday — but what else is new these days? — and missed a five-footer on the 18th hole at Dove Mountain to lose to Nick Watney in the second round of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. Given Tiger’s putting woes lately, it shouldn’t have been a surprise, but I was admittedly shocked (initial reaction went something like *gasp,* followed by “wow”). So was Watney.
He had putted out and was preparing to go to the first tee and he was still in shock in the interview by the 18th green.
“I’m definitely in a little bit of shock,” said Watney.
Woods missed three putts within ten feet in the last six holes. He said afterwards that he was pushing everything, but it wouldn’t be hard to fix. (Yeah, definitely looked like he was shoving it a little right.) In my opinion, it’s more mental than anything else. I’ve never been to the Match Play, but the greens look like a pain in the you-know-what — and just tricky and maybe even a tad stupid.
Well, I’m just glad I chose Watney over Tiger in my bracket…(no, it’s not anything personal, but he hasn’t putted well lately).
In other news…
*Dustin Johnson clobbered Francesco Molinari 7&5. He’ll face Mark Wilson in the third round.
*Playing in this event for the first time in nine years, Paul Lawrie managed to hold off Ryo Ishikawa 1-up. Lawrie will face fellow Scot Martin Laird, who beat Matteo Manassero 2&1. Which totally messed up my bracket. Plus, I was rooting for a Ryo vs. Manny match. That would have been really fun. Oh well.
*Thursday’s tweet of the day goes to…Lee Westwood, who poked some fun at himself for making it past the second round of this event for the first time.
Feel like the 1st man on the moon! 1 giant step through to Friday at the matchplay! Need more clothes. Didn’t pack for long enough!
— Lee Westwood (@WestwoodLee) February 23, 2012
He jokingly told Golf Channel’s Steve Sands after beating Robert Karlsson 3&2: “I don’t know what Fridays are like here…First thing I’m going to do is fill up my courtesy car because I’ve never had to drive on a Friday before…I have to get more fuel…”
Westy will play Watney in the third round.
*In the Torrey Pines rematch, Brandt Snedeker outlasted Kyle Stanley 2&1 and will face Peter Hanson, who throttled Ernie Els 5&4.
*Rory McIlroy’s short game is looking super sharp! His chipping was excellent. He joked in his post-win interview that it’s because he’s been getting a lot of practice around the greens since his ballstriking hasn’t been too good. McIlroy beat Anders Hansen 3&2 and will play against Miguel Angel Jimenez, aka “The Most Interesting Man in the World,” who held off infamous spitter Keegan Bradley 2&1.
*Who else is still standing? Steve Stricker vs. Hunter Mahan; Matt Kuchar vs. Martin Kaymer; John Senden vs. Sang-Moon Bae.
*How’s your bracket looking? Here are the current rankings in the WUP group.
(AP Photo/Eric Risberg)