Tiger Woods has failed to win a major championship in five years. He entered the 2013 British Open as the favorite and No. 1-ranked player in the world, but he desperately needs a victory to truly reestablish himself as the best.
After a sound Round 1, Woods has put himself in contention for a championship.
Woods had an up-and-down start with five birdies to go with three bogeys, but bounced back and found some consistency to finish two-under 69 through 18 holes at Muirfield. PGA Tour on Twitter shared some details on his day:
There were certainly stretches where Woods looked like his former self, effortlessly maneuvering through rough patches and tough shots. However, these smooth periods were interrupted by the occasional bump in the road.
Here's a look at Tiger's scorecard from Round 1:
Round 1 Scorecard
All scoring info courtesy of the major championships' official site.
The good news for Woods is ample. For one, he's only three strokes behind Zach Johnson, who currently leads all contestants.
Other good news for Woods' fortunes after a solid Round 1 comes from Mother Nature. According to Barry Svrluga of the Washington Post, the forecast calls for no rain and Woods has a history of not playing well in adverse conditions:
The forecast, quite amazingly, calls for no rain over the course of the tournament’s four days, with temperatures in the low 70s and winds not much more than 10 mph – just a wisp in these parts. That could bring Woods into play. His three British Open titles have all come in benign conditions, and his worst score as a pro – the 81 he turned in during the third round of the 2002 British – came in a downright gale at Muirfield.
Will Tiger Woods win the 2013 British Open?
History is also on Tiger's side, as Kyle Porter of CBS details. The first-round 69 for Tiger is, well, par for the course when it comes to his performance at the British Open. His career average in the first round at the tournament is a 69.2.
But more important than anything else is one thing: Tiger is good.
He showed it in flashes in Round 1. One such flash came on the third hole when Tiger found himself in a bunker. He effortlessly chopped his way out of the sand and proceeded to nail a par putt:
Then there was this on the par-three 13th hole where he decided to get dramatic with a long birdie putt:
The bottom line is, Tiger is the top-ranked golfer in the world for a reason and already has three British Open victories under his belt.
Sitting three strokes behind the leader is nothing for Tiger.
On golf's biggest stage, Tiger has already placed himself in a position to take it all—again. Expect nothing less from the No. 1 golfer in the world.
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