Tue, Aug 04, 2009 - Page 18 News List

Woods back to winning ways at Buick Open

REUTERS , GRAND BLANC, MICHIGAN

Tiger Woods watches his tee shot on the 13th during the final round of the Buick Open at Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club in Grand Blanc, Michigan, on Sunday.

PHOTO: AFP

The businesslike nature of Tiger Woods’ Buick Open win on Sunday signaled the world No. 1 has come to terms with his big British Open letdown and got his game back on track for the PGA Championship.

Almost overlooked in the outpouring of emotion that surrounded what might have been the final Buick Open was a superb week of steadily improving play from Woods, establishing him as the odds-on-favorite going into the year’s final major at Hazeltine Golf Club later this month.

For the first time in his career, Woods will play back-to-back events before heading into a major and moves on to Akron, Ohio, for the World Golf Championship event at Firestone Golf Club where he has won six times.

“I know what I’m doing wrong,” Woods told reporters after collecting his fourth win of the season and 69th of his career. “It’s just a matter of getting enough reps in. Next few days, I’ll be able to do that and hopefully solidify come Thursday. Firestone’s always a difficult track. If we don’t get any rain down there, it’ll be hard and fast.”

Back in action for the first time since The Open, where he missed the cut in a major for only the second time as a professional, Woods appeared to suffering from a major hangover when he arrived at Warwick Hills.

After an erratic opening round 71 left him eight shots off the pace, sparking suggestions he might even miss consecutive cuts for the first time as a pro, Woods hit back in spectacular style with a 63 — his lowest round of the year — on Friday, followed by a 65 and a bogey-free 69 on Sunday.

“I didn’t do a very good job the first day, but after that I got it going pretty good,” Woods said. “Hopefully, I’ll get a little bit of work in the next few days and be ready for Thursday. I’ve got a few things to work on, but I can use this as a little momentum going into the next two weeks.”

■CZECH OPEN

AFP, PRAGUE

Swedish rookie Oskar Henningsson, playing in his first European Tour season, captured his maiden title on Sunday with a two shot victory at the Czech Open.

Hennigsson, 23, who triumphed at the Qualifying School last November, shot a final round 67 for a 13-under total, beating England’s Sam Little and overnight leader Steve Webster, who finished tied for second.

The Swede had been three shots behind Webster after the third round, but birdies at the first, fourth and eighth holes edged him in front.

He had two more birdies on the way and even a bogey on the last couldn’t dent his victory march as he became only the third player after Jose Maria Olazabal and Gordon Brand Jr to win Qualifying School and then land a title in their maiden European Tour season.

“It feels great. I’m overwhelmed,” said the champion, who had started the tournament with a double-bogey at his first hole on Thursday. “I had no expectations that I would win this week, it feels strange, but good. I’ve a 10-hour trip home by car, so I will have a lot of time to think about it and what I have done.”

Zimbabwe’s Marc Cayeux, England’s Graeme Storm and Spain’s Ignacio Garrido — who led for much of the day before four bogeys in a row from the 10th — were tied for fourth on 10-under.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top