With two bogeys in the first four holes of his 2013 Honda Classic, Tiger Woods was quickly in a huge hole on Thursday at the PGA National Champion Course in Palm Beach, Fla.
Luckily for Woods, he quickly righted the ship and did not suffer another bogey on the day to finish with an even-par 70.
With the afternoon guys still on the course, his even-par round left Woods five shots off of the lead established by Branden Grace and Graham Delaet.
In the just clearing darkness of morning, Woods started off the day on No. 10, and immediately bogeyed. He then carded two straight pars, but took another step back on No. 13.
That lengthy par putt certainly was no gimme, but the miss was indicative of his round. He missed a six-foot effort to earn his bogey on his opening hole, and he wound up with 32 putts.
Woods wasn't overly concerned about his putting. Here is a post-round quote by Woods as provided by PGATour.com's Brian Wacker:
I hit good putts. I was getting fooled on the grain; some of it was snagging, some I would blow right through the top side.
The green speeds are a little bit faster than they were (Wednesday), but it's an adjustment I need to make.
Backing up Woods' assertion about his putting woes is the fact that he putted much better as the day progressed. He needed just 11 putts for the final seven holes, and that allowed him to climb back to even par.
Woods didn't pick up his first birdie of the day until his 14th hole, No. 3.
Of course, that birdie was largely attributed to his approach, and he was solid all day with his irons. The same cannot be said for his work off the tee. Woods did not have his best aim off the tee and it caused a few problems for the legend.
Woods pulled his tee shot into the hazard on No. 6. However, the ball was only half submerged, and Woods would have had to go way back for the drop.
So, Woods got his feet wet, and unlike Jean van de Velde at the British Open years ago, Woods was able to get the ball to drier land on his first shot, and he wound up saving par.
Woods talked about that pivotal moment and more in his post-round interview.
In all, it was a solid start for Woods. He is five shots back, but remember, it was this event last year where Woods fired a career-best Sunday 62 to finish second behind Rory McIlroy.
If Tiger can straighten out his drives a bit and hold his late putting form Round 1, he will be there on Sunday with a chance to win.