Sun, May 06, 2007 - Page 22 News List

Tiger Woods seizes share of the lead at Wachovia

AFP , CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA

Tiger Woods seized a share of the halfway lead in the US$6.4 million Wachovia Championship on Friday, alongside Vijay Singh and Arron Oberholser.

Woods hit only five fairways, but managed not to make a bogey until his final hole as he carded a 4-under-par 68 for a 6-under total of 138.

Fiji's Singh, who like Woods played in benign morning conditions, posted a 71 while Oberholser fired a 69 to complete the trio, who led Ted Purdy (69) and Jason Bohn (72) by one shot.

Ken Duke (70) was a further shot back on 140.

Woods, who has never won here, signed for five birdies against the one bogey.

`Very pleased'

"I'm very pleased with my score," said Woods, who was making his first start since last month's Masters.

"I missed a couple of short ones but also got away with a couple of bad drives," he said.

"I pretty much have maximized my rounds. I didn't hit it very good today. I made a couple of good par saves to keep the middle part of my round going," Woods said.

First-round leader Padraig Harrington recovered from a poor start to regain the outright lead with two holes to play, only to drop four shots on his way to a nightmare finish.

Harrington bogeyed the par-3 17th before taking a triple-bogey at the par-4 18th, when he found the water left of the green with his approach shot, and compounded his problems by three-putting.

He trudged off the green three strokes from the lead after a 75.

Singh, meanwhile, made a sluggish start, dropping two shots on his outward half, but he finished strong, picking up three strokes in his last three holes.

His highlight was an eagle at the par-5 seventh, where he he hit a 3-iron to 1m.

`Putting it together'

"That's the way this game is," Singh said. "I wasn't playing bad. I just wasn't putting it together and then all of a sudden, something good happened."

Oberholser also finished strong with birdies at his final three holes.

"I'm striking the ball very well but I'm going to have to putt better," Oberholser said. "I'll be honest -- I never feel totally comfortable on this course. It's a lot like Augusta, where you have to think from the green backwards, and play accordingly."

Oberholser will play his third round in relative peace and quiet with Purdy.

Woods and Singh will slug it out in the final pairing.

Their relationship has been somewhat frosty since the 2000 Presidents Cup, when Singh's caddie wore a cap with the words "Tiger Who?" stitched on the back before a singles match between the two.

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