April 11, 2005


An emotional victory for Woods at Masters (JOE LOGAN, 4/10/05, Philadelphia Inquirer)

With the kind of dramatic flourish that he alone provides, Tiger Woods captured his fourth Masters on Sunday night and once again became No. 1 in the world.

Victory came after a long day and a titanic 27-hole showdown with a surprisingly resilient Chris DiMarco - and it all came down to Woods' 15-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff.

"This one's for my dad," said Woods, choking back tears, knowing that his very ill father, Earl, was watching on TV at their rented house in Augusta.

"He's struggling. That's why it meant so much for me to be able to win this tournament - maybe give him a little hope, a little more fire to keep fighting."

For Woods, who finished 72 holes tied with DiMarco at 12-under-par 276, the hard-fought victory - for his ninth major title - was as satisfying as they come.

The man who once won seven of 11 majors and dominated golf like no one since Jack Nicklaus had gone 0 for 10 in majors since winning the 2002 U.S. Open. Even his once seeemingly untouchable No. 1 world ranking had been taken away by Vijay Singh.

But on Sunday, at Augusta National, the place where he first wowed the world of sports with his 12-shot win in the 1997 Masters, Woods reasserted his claim to the title of greatest golfer of his generation.

He did it by returning to the course early Sunday morning and polishing off the final nine holes of his third-round 65, then enduring a toe-to-toe golfing slugfest with DiMarco, shooting 71 to DiMarco's final-round 68. [...]

"I went out and shot 68 around here on Sunday, which is a very good round, and 12 under is usually good enough to win," DiMarco said. "I just was playing against Tiger Woods."

Which was sillier: complaints about Tiger showing too much of a temper on the course that Bobby Jones built; or the questions about whether his late struggle would allow him to claim he was truly back in form?

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 11, 2005 8:35 AM

"...DiMarco said. 'I just was playing against Tiger Woods.' "

Dude. No, you weren't. You were hitting balls, by yourself, on a stretch of grass. You weren't "playing against" anybody.

Golf is a game. It's not a sport. Whoever happens to perform, by himself, better than a bunch of other people perform, by themselves, on a given day -- that's who "wins."

Golf is not a competition. Somebody sits and adds up each invididual's numbers at the end of a tournament, and whoever has the best number wins.

Golf is also boring.

Posted by: Semolina at April 11, 2005 10:13 AM

I love golf.

Posted by: AllenS at April 11, 2005 12:04 PM

Anybody know how to cure a boomerang slice? As in aim at the left foul pole, hit the right foul pole. Takes a bit of the fun out of the game.

Posted by: joe shropshire at April 11, 2005 6:02 PM