Tiger Woods Leads McDowell, Mickelson, Stricker in WGC-Cadillac Championship

Day Two at the WGC-Cadillac Championship


Tiger Woods Leads McDowell, Mickelson, Stricker in WGC-Cadillac Championship

On another almost perfect day in Doral, the incredible talent of the world’s best golfers was on display.  Yesterday Tiger Woods had 9 birdies, today he posted 8.  The 17 birdies in two days is a personal best.  He leads the rest by 2 strokes going into the weekend

His 7-under 65 gave him a two-shot lead over 2010 U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell, and a three-shot advantage over Phil Mickelson and Steve Stricker.

On Wednesday Steve Stricker and Tiger Woods spent about 45 minutes together working on putting strokes.

“I’ve always liked the way he putts it,” Stricker said. “We’ve talked a lot about it over the years. We have the same ideas, although we do different things to get it there. We have the same principles. He’s open to hearing what I have to say sometimes.”

It appears to have been of some help to Tiger whose putting has been somewhat erratic.  He produced 22 one-putt greens for the tournament, and on Friday he hit 15-of-18 greens in regulation.

Tiger has won 26 of 31 times when he has been in the lead after 36 holes.

Mickelson shot 67-67.  “I saw Tiger was playing well and I wanted to make a couple birdies to get in the group with him,” Mickelson said. “It seems since 2007, when we played at Deutsche Bank in Boston, I’ve been playing some of my best golf when we get paired together.”

Graeme McDowell saw it this way:  “I saw Phil sneaking up the leaderboard there behind me, and I said to (caddie) Kenny (Comboy), ‘Let’s spoil this party tomorrow,’ ” McDowell said. “I’m sure they would have liked Tiger and Phil in the last group tomorrow, would have been great for the tournament, but I certainly will enjoy the position of being in the last group and the mix. That’s right where I want to be.”

Saturday is known as “moving day” in the PGA.  Who will be playing in the final pair on Sunday?  I sure wouldn’t bet against Tiger who is playing some of his best golf in years.  But McDowell, Mickelson, “Bubba”, and Stricker are not letting up.

By the way, number one in the world, Rory McIlroy had his first sub-par round of 2013.  He shot a round of 69 that included six birdies.  He finished at 2 under par for the tournament.

James Turnage

Columnist-The Guardian Express

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