Aug
22
2011
Tiger Woods Still Close, Still Needs More Reps
By Stephanie Wei under Tiger Woods

Tiger: the fairway less taken

Team Tiger published a blog post on TigerWoods.com on Monday, which includes an assessment of Tiger’s game at the PGA, the ongoing caddie search, his new Nike shoes, playing in Notah Begay’s charity event, hoping to make the Presidents Cup.

Here’s a look at the highlights, starting with the most notable topic — a healthy Tiger says he wants to play on the Presidents Cup, but per Captain Fred Couples orders, he needs to add another event to his schedule:

I have trips to Asia and Australia, and hopefully I’ll get picked for the Presidents Cup team. I’ve had some conversations with U.S. captain Fred Couples, and we’ll see how it goes. Of course, I want to be on the team.

It’s always fun to play for your country, and we did pretty well two years ago in San Francisco. I’m just going to keep practicing and try to get better. It’s Freddie’s call, and he can make any choice he wants.

I might add another PGA Tour event to my schedule. Right now, I’m looking at my options.

His options? A second-rate-level or B-list Fall Series tournament or receiving an invite to play at a European Tour event. Gasp! He should suck it up, put aside his ego and sign up for Disney or Sea Island — even better, Justin Timberlake’s tournament in Vegas.

Tiger thanks buddy Bryon Bell for caddying raking bunkers for him at the WGC and PGA, but he’s yet to announce a permanent replacement.

He did a great job. He knows my game, and he knows me. Unfortunately, I was pretty rusty and didn’t have enough reps to contend in either tournament.

I haven’t decided on a new caddie yet, but am definitely thinking about it a lot. There’s a few guys I’m looking at, but it all depends on timing. At this point, I’m in no hurry to make a decision.

What am I looking for? Two things: A person with a lot of experience, and a person I’ll have fun with.

Paging John Wood (Hunter Mahan’s current caddie)! Meanwhile, as for working with swing coach Sean Foley, he says Foley is expecting another child so he hasn’t been able to see him…

I’ll keep working on my game, but my coach, Sean Foley, is pretty busy at the moment. His second child is due very soon, so he’s home taking care of his family.

Of course, the main goal these days is feeling healthy (but he still expects to win, according to his pressers).

It was nice to finally play in some tournaments and test out my left leg. Although I didn’t play as well as I wanted to, I hit more solid shots than people might think and more importantly, I had no problems with my knee and Achilles tendon. Right now, I’m healthy.

And he analyzes his swing and game during his embarrassing comeback to competitive golf after an eleven-week layoff.

At the PGA Championship, when I trusted my game and swing, it was there. When I didn’t, I fell back into my old patterns. I just need more reps.

I’m used to seeing the ball curve a lot, but now I’m hitting the ball much straighter, and it’s hard to trust that. Most of the tee shots I missed at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and PGA were straight balls into the left trees, bunkers or rough. I couldn’t cut the ball. I’m just not comfortable yet aiming straight, and it’s a whole new sight line for me.

If he really does want to be on the Presidents Cup squad, he’ll need to abide by Captain Couples mandate. Couples made it clear last week that Tiger must play more competitive golf, saying, “He can’t just show up the week before in Australia. I’m the captain, and he wants to be on the team. This is my chance to hold my rank above him one time.”

Combine that with Tiger saying he needs more reps — then adding a Fall Series event to his calendar seems logical.

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)