This years final major started today with the 91st PGA Championship from Hazeltine. Coming off two straight victories, Tiger Woods looks to gain this years first major win. In a change from years past Woods did not take the week before the major off. As of right now it looks like that was a good decision. In what looks like the Tiger of 2002, woods has yet to bogey a single hole and is flag hunting like it’s the final group on Sunday.
Currently Woods is in the lead at 5 under par. At a course that is the 4thlongest in major history length was suppose to be a major fator. What is Woods’ answer to that; his 5th birdie of the day came after his approach into the 7thhole par 5 with only a 6 iron. Woods is on to the 8th hole, his 17thof the day, with a 1 shot lead over Padraig Harrington, and Hunter Mahan.
Woods just missed about a 12 foot birdie putt at the 8th. He seemed a little cautious with that putt but an easy tap in par never hurts. Woods is headed to his final hole of the day with a one shot lead.
Woods’ tee shot on the 9th right down the middle. Woods, for the most part, has left the driver in the bag today using mostly his 3 and 5 woods off the tee. The 9th hole tee shot, much of the same, was Woods’ 5 wood.
Tigers approach on the 9th was the perfect distance pin high and about 15 feet left of the hole. After hitting his 12th out of 14 fairway of the day Woods was only left with a 9 iron into the green.
With a tough side hill putt, Tiger misses his birdie attempt on the high side of the hole. However, Woods is left with just a tap in par for a first round 67 and a 1 shot lead at the moment.
Phil Mickelsons roundwill begin within the hour with live hole updates from me throughout his entire round.
1st hole: Phil’s tee shot on the first hole just rolls into the first cut of rough. Phil used his driver on the first tee and played a big cut shot to this point. His approach shot just a three-quarter swing that landed on the left side of green. With a ride side pin position Phil is faced with a long birdie putt. Phil’s birdie putt went a little long and right of the hole but he was able to tap in the comebacker for par.
2nd hole: Phil uses his driver again and blasts his tee shot down the middle of the fairway. Phils aggressiveness off the tee looks to have paid off as his approach spins back to about 5 feet from hole. Phil pushes birdie putt to the right and burns the edge. Tap in for par.
3rd hole: Coming to his first par 5, unreachable even for Phil, Mickelson uses a fairway wood off the tee and his drive falls safely in the fairway. After a lay-up shot, Phils approach was over hooked and ended up in the right rough just past the hole. Phil has some work left to get up and down for a par. In what seemed like a good lie, Phil scuffs his chip and is left with about an 8 to 10 footer for par. Phil makes his par putt and is on the 4th hole still at EVEN par.
4th hole: Phils tee shot on the par 3 fourth hole made it to the upper level coming to rest on the back right side of the green. He will be faced with about a 25 foot putt for birdie. Phil hits a good lag putt that come sup just short of hole. Finishes the hole with an easy tap in par.
5th hole: Phils tee shot perfect down the left center of fairway. His approach was right on line but came up about 15 feet short of hole. Should have an uphill putt for birdie coming up. A big right to left swinger, Phil misses his birdie attempt. An easy tap in Phil misses par putt. This leaves Phil at 1 over par going into the 6th.
6th hole: Phil pulls back on his tee shot and hits a short drive down the right side. His approach is good but not in ideal birdie rang. After a good lag putt Phil makes a short 6 footer for par.
7th hole: For the first time today Phil looks comfortable with his swing as he bombs his drive down the fairway. His second shot hits the middle of the green giving Phil a long shot at eagle. Phils eagle putt barely slides by but he has an easy tap in birdie to get back to EVEN par.
8th hole: Phils tee shot on the par 3 is a good one. About 10 feet from the hole Phil will have a left to right breaker for his birdie. After a really wuick stroke Phil misses his birdie putt on the low side and taps it in for par.
9th hole: Phil hooked his drive into the left rough. Better than first thought, Phil had somewhat of an open shot on his approach which he pushed into the right greenside bunker. His bunker shot stops about 10 feet past hole. Philspar putt roles past hole. With the tap in bogey Phil ends his fist 9 at 1 over par six shots back of Woods.
10th hole: Seemingly having control problems off the tee today as yet another has went wayward for Phil. His tee shot on this hole was hooked well right into the gallery. Probably expecting his lie to be a flyer, Phil’s approach comes up about 15 yards short of the green in the left rough. Phils troubles continue as his chip attempt comes up short and goes into greenside bunker. His 4th shot of the hole stops just past hole. Phil’s short comebacker goes begging as Mickelsontaps in for a double bogey. Not a good way to start his second 9.
11th hole: Holding nothing back, Phil kills his tee shot down the left side of the fairway. After yet another approach shot hooked to the left, Phil hit one of hits famous flop shots that put him in a position to make a birdie. Phil is able to get a shot back with a solid putt.
12th hole: Phils tee shot again wayward as it flys to the right. Missing the bunkers on the right his ball has come to rest in the deep rough in between them. Phil hits a great hooking shot out of the rough that comes up just short of the green. Phils chip is a good one and he should escape with a par.
13th hole: Phils tee shot on the par 3 was safely to the right side of the green. His lag put went about 3 feet just to the right of the hole which he tapped in for par.
14th hole: Phil hooks his tee shot into the right side fairway bunker. His bunker shot safely onto middle of green. Another boring hole for Mickelson as he two putts for a par.
15th hole: Coming to the par 5 15th Mickelson bombs a drive right down the center of the fairway. Phils second shot from fairway goes way left into the crowd near the green. Phil hits a great chip shot that goes 15 feet past hole. Phil blows his birdie putt past the hole and makes 4 footer coming back for par.
16th hole: Phil, with water looming on the right, tees off with an iron to the middle of the fairway. Phil gives himself a chance with a birdie with his approach that lands 10ft short of pin. Phil misses yet another birdie putt and taps it in for par.
17th hole: Tee shot to the center of the green. Another two putt par for Mickelson.
18th hole: His last tee shot of the day looked a lot like the others as Phil badly hooked it into the right trees. His second shot, though, sailed through the trees and onto the front edge of the green giving Phil a chance to birdie his final hole of the day. Phils birdie putt misses to the right and he taps it in for a par. Phil wont be happy with a first round score of 74, a full 7 shots back of the leader Woods.