Tournament article


Tiger Woods leads the ZOZO Championship with 64 finish on Round 1

Tiger Woods chose this first ever US PGA and Japan Tour co-sanctioned ZOZO Championship to be his opening game for the 2019-2020 season. This was his first tournament after his 5th knee surgery, but there was nothing to worry about. Tiger made 9 birdies and 3 bogies on Round 1 to score 64 and became the leader with 1 shot deficit.

It has been 13 years, since Tiger last came to Japan, but he has done as he always does. With a great performance, he rocked the crowd. The amount of the spectators was 18536, best ever sine the record was taken from 1992.

Tiger was welcomed by the spectators by "standing ovation" at the starting 10th tee box. He was wondering whether to use 5W or 3W on his tee shot, and he chose 3W which got caught in the water. He bogeyed that hole and went on to bogey 3 holes in a row.
"I had terrible start today. Bad shots followed another, it didn't look like I could adjust, but I am surprised myself that I was able to bounce back and go 6 under par from there."

The "Tiger Charge" that he himself was even surprised started from 14th, where he holed the 4-meter birdie putt. Then on 15 he darted the shot to 1.5 meters, and on 16 it was 3 meters. He made 3 consecutive birdies and made it even easily.

Tiger went on making birdie at 18 and after the turn, he also made 3 birdies in a row from 3 to 5. Now on the roll, Tiger holed the 6-meter birdie putt on 7.

"Until I had my 5th knee surgery in August. I couldn't even bend down to read the lines. I am glad that I could bend down and read the lines today."

Tiger' superb performance is the evidence that he is back on the track. At last hole Par 4 9th, he shot into the right side tree and showed his anger for a moment, but luckily it got great kick by the tree and was out on the roughs. From there Tiger shot it to 2-meter to the pin and made the birdie finish to end the day with a big smile. Tiger left the green waving to the screaming fans.

"A round this great hasn't happened in a long time. Today's birdie putts except the 7th which was right to left, all the others were left to right line. What a crazy day this was. I was amazed to see so many fans today. I am having really fun playing in front of the Japanese fans. I was longing for the cheers from my Japanese fans."

Already a dramatic round by Tiger Woods. Fans must be really happy that there is still 3 more days left.