Published: Thu, September 27, 2018
Sport | By Ashley Hunter

Tiger Woods leads at Tour Championship

Tiger Woods leads at Tour Championship

Tiger Woods has continued his monumental rise up the World Golf Rankings after his first PGA Tour victory in over five years.

It's good to have Tiger back in the win column and also, to all who said Tiger would never be any good again, where are you?

Woods won his first title in five years when he claimed the TOUR Championship in Atlanta, Georgia. Other than number three, every putt was uphill, so it was nice. It was similar to, if you guys remember, in 1997 at the Western coming down the last hole. Poked at her a little bit. But not to this fevered pitch. "I'm certainly much more equipped than I was in March because of what I've gone through". "So people yell, and they were yelling; they're going to be hoarse".

Woods, 42, was basically out of golf for the past two years, playing just three tournaments worldwide as he attempted to alleviate back and nerve pain that led to four surgeries.

Woods led playing partner Justin Rose (68) by five shots at various stages on Saturday but had to settle for a three-shot cushion over the Englishman and Rory McIlroy (66), who sit at nine under.

"And because of that I felt comfortable when I got to Bay Hill and when I grabbed the lead at the Open Championship things didn't really feel abnormal even though it's been years - literally years - since I've been in those spots".

"I just can't believe I pulled this off". "That helps. I don't have to shoot 63 or 64 and hope I get help".

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The gallery at East Lake was enormous in anticipation of Woods winning for the first time in more than five years. Woods has the 54-hole lead for the first time since his last victory in 2013 at the Bridgestone Invitational.

All that was left was the 42-year-old Woods in that red shirt, blazing brighter than ever, and a smile he couldn't shake walking up the 18th to collect another trophy.

Woods admitted it was an emotional final round as the crowds swelled to sizes never seen before on the PGA Tour. "Look, he's a notoriously great frontrunner, but if I go out and I play similar tomorrow like I did today, I'll have no complaints". "But as the year progressed and I proved that I could play and I found my swing and I put the pieces together, I knew I could do it again". That's just the way golf is. But Snead played for 30 years, while Woods has played for 18.

"But somehow I've been able to do that, and here we are".

The California-native has struggled both on and off the golf course since winning his 79th PGA title in Akron, Ohio, in 2013.

Woods had still not spoken with his children, due to his media duties, and got up after his 20 minutes in the media tent to make a special phone call home. At his last Ryder Cup, in 2012 in Medinah, Ill., Woods finished 0-3-1 in his matches.

Mickelson, who will face Woods in a lucrative head-to-head shoot-out in Las Vegas in November, said he had never doubted that the 14-time major victor would add to his collection of PGA Tour titles.

"Well, when I came out here, there was no internet!"

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