Tiger briefly takes lead in Bahamas
By DOUG FERGUSON
AP Golf Writer
NASSAU, Bahamas — One of the biggest cheers at the Hero World Challenge came from seeing the name Tiger Woods moved to the top of the leaderboard.
It just wasn’t there for long.
In another impressive showing in his latest comeback from back surgeries, Woods built on a solid start with a 31 on the front nine at Albany Golf Club that briefly gave him the lead Friday. He stalled on the back nine with a pair of bogeys and not enough birdie chances, and he settled for a 4-under 68.
“Successful,” Woods said, when asked to describe his round in one word.
When the second round ended, Woods was five shots behind Charley Hoffman, who had a 63 that might have sent fans into a frenzy if they had been watching.
Hoffman made 12 birdies, closing with five in a row. He was at 12-under 132 and had a three-shot lead over Jordan Spieth (67) and Tommy Fleetwood (69). Hoffman made only one par over his final 12 holes to go along with eight birdies and three bogeys.
But this week, a holiday exhibition with an 18-man field and no cut, is all about Woods. That much was obvious after the round.
Hoffman spoke to no more than five reporters about his round, while a dozen others were about 30 feet away surrounding Joe LaCava, Woods’ caddie, looking for any additional morsel about his round.
Woods delivered plenty on his own. He opened with three birdies in four holes. He made three good pars, one of them having to chip up the slope from a thin lie on No. 8, and then really raised hopes with his eagle on the par-5 ninth, set up by a 3-wood into the wind from 265 yards.
“Hit up in the air and took something off of it and cut it back into the wind,” he said.