Tiger Woods Is In The Same Old Hole Again

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A reminder: Tiger Woods has never won a major when trying to come from behind after 54 holes. He'll have to do it to win the British Open.

After Tiger's Saturday 72, he sits at one-under entering Sunday at Muirfield, just two shots back of leader Lee Westwood, allergic to leads and majors in equal measure. Woods will be in Sunday's second-to-last group with Adam Scott, as he's tied for second with Hunter Mahan, who shot a 68 on Saturday to move up the board. Henrik Stenson, Zach Johnson, and Angel Cabrera sit behind that pack at one-over, and Phil Mickelson's at two-over. And, arguably, all of those guys are better bets than Tiger, whose futility when off the lead at majors is legendary.

Woods has had the lead or a share of it at a major when the third round concluded 15 times; he's gone on to win 14 of those times, failing to do so in his most recent attempt at the 2009 PGA Championship. But Tiger's played the weekend at a major and trailed entering Sunday 49 times, and he's failed to win those events all 49 times. This worry about Tiger's abilities on Sunday isn't about him not being the "old Tiger," whatever that is: It's about Tiger never having made a charge from behind to get a major.


The "new Tiger" has also had some issues on Sundays that have nothing to do with this old worry. Since winning the 2008 U.S. Open, Woods has shot in the 60s just five times in final rounds of majors, and has done so outside of Augusta National just once. His two Sundays at the British Open since 2008 are even worse: He hasn't gone lower than 72.

If Tiger's going to roar to his 15th major this Sunday, he'll be doing something neither the old Tiger or the new Tiger has done before.


[Golf Channel/PGA Tour]

Photo: Scott Heppell/AP