Despite not winning a major and having some close calls this year, Tiger Woods has still had a promising turnaround year as we get set for Round 3 of the CIMB Asia Pacific Classic.
Woods has notched three victories and nine top-10 finishes in 19 PGA Tour events this season, and he had placed in the top 10 in his last three tournaments headed into the Mines.
Tiger finds himself tied for fifth place in Malaysia as Round 3 kicks off, five strokes behind leader Robert Garrigus. With a strong third day, he has the potential to set himself up nicely come Round 4.
Of course, the problem for Tiger all season long has been his inconsistency closing in tournaments. He's been in plenty of close battles, evidenced by his numerous top-10 finishes, but his struggles in the later rounds have held him back from being dominant.
Woods is second on tour in scoring average before the cut this year, but ranks 44th and 30th in the third and fourth round respectively, per PGATour.com. There is no doubt that he's playing his best golf since 2008, but you can't help but feel he's been capable of so much more this season.
Even after closing the third round of the TOUR Championship with a 67 in late September, Woods still closed with a 72, ending up in eighth place. He's one of those guys this year who you can't say will win it until he actually does.
Garrigus should give Woods the greatest challenge moving forward. Not only is Garrigus five strokes ahead with Round 3 underway, he's ranked in the top 50 on tour with seven top-10 finishes on the year.
Woods has an opportunity in the later months to finish off 2012 strong and set himself up nicely for the next season. As he gets older, he needs to take advantage of every tournament he plays in. He is once again in the top 10 with two rounds to play at the Mines, but he needs to prove he can close consistently.