Woods ‘very pleased’ after tie for 23rd in Tour return

Woods ‘very pleased’ after tie for 23rd in Tour return

LA JOLLA – Agence France-Presse
Woods ‘very pleased’ after tie for 23rd in Tour return

Tiger Woods gave his surgically fused spine its toughest test to date and came away with a tie for 23rd place in the Farmers Insurance Open.

The former world number one carded an even-par 72 on Jan. 28 on the Torrey Pines South Course, where his eight PGA Tour victories include his 14th and most recent major title at the 2008 U.S. Open.

“Today I played a lot better,” said Woods, who had four birdies and four bogeys in a round that gave him a three-under par total of 285 and a share of 23rd place.

“It was tough conditions out there,” he added of Santa Ana winds gusting across the course. “It was tough scoring.”

Woods was playing his first U.S. tour event since missing the cut at Torrey Pines last year.

He had missed all of 2016 with back trouble, and his comeback bid last year was cut short by recurring pain and spinal fusion surgery in April.

Woods hit just 17 of 56 greens all week, but he displayed a deft touch around the greens and solid putting to bring it in under par.

Most importantly, there was no sign of any back trouble as he looks ahead to his next scheduled start at Riviera in Los Angeles Feb. 15-18.

“Very pleased,” said Woods, who hadn’t made the cut in a PGA Tour event since his tie for 10th at the Wyndham Championship in August of 2015.

“After not playing for a couple of years to come out here on the Tour and really play a solid four days -- I fought hard for these scores.

“These weren’t yawners, down the middle, on the green, two-putt and one-hand all your second putts in the hole,” he said. “I had to fight for every score on every hole. It showed that I had heart. I fought my tail off and it was good stuff.”