Tiger Woods living in denial following brutal U.S. Open

Tiger Woods living in denial following brutal U.S. Open

Not exactly what you'd expect from one of the giants of the sport in the U.S. Open.

On a course that can cause problems in any weather, where triple bogeys or worse have been recorded on all but six holes, perhaps the most daunting prospect going into the weekend is Dustin Johnson with a four-shot lead.

Even so, there's plenty of reminders of how it can all go wrong - some of them from Johnson's own experiences, majority from the final few hours Friday afternoon in flawless weather from those trying to catch him.

On No. 1 on Friday - his 10th hole of the day, after playing even-par on the back nine - Woods ran into trouble after hitting his second shot in the deep rough. Johnson three-putted for par to finish one shot behind Jordan Spieth.

It wasn't so good for Tiger Woods, who hasn't made a U.S. Open cut since 2013.

It was a childish display from a five-time major victor celebrating his 48th birthday.

Harold Varner, playing in his second major, finished the tournament at plus-14.


'Dustin was in complete control of what he was doing, ' said Woods. Yesterday the world's best players were made to look like weekend hackers with barely a putt reaching the hole, others taking wicked deflections with the afternoon Poa Annua grass poking random pinheads through the surface.

The key, he said, was not getting angry. "So you just got to go find it and hit it again".

Woods' previous worst US Open round was a 77 in the third round at Oakland Hills in 1996.

He trotted after it and when the ball was about 15 feet beyond the hole, and still trickling, he hit it back towards the hole. Mickelson still had a chance to win until a double-bogey at the par-5 16th.

Then, calamity struck as Rose bogeyed his final two holes to fall five adrift - alongside another countryman Tommy Fleetwood, who shot a brilliant 66 - but that was a benevolent fate when place alongside the misfortune that struck Poulter.

Another shot went on the sixth, but like the Woods of old he kept fighting to the end and closed with back-to-back birdies to end 10 over. "But I'm playing well enough to shoot that number, given the conditions, and I just have to putt a little better". You have to be on. He had not missed the cut in a major since the 2014 PGA Championship. Those who would not make the cut now include Tiger Woods (+10), Jordan Spieth (+10), Bubba Watson (+13), Rory McIlroy (+13) and Sergio Garcia (+14). "(There were) a couple times where I hit a couple of bad iron shots, but every time I felt like I was able to save par, at least give myself a really good look at par. "I just felt like I was blown away by the wind Thursday", he told Sky Sports. After his second-round 72 put him at 10 over for the tournament, he didn't make the cut.

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