The WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play has delivered some incredible recovery shots over the years, and Tiger Woods added one to the list on Thursday.
From Victor Dubuisson’s multiple cacti escapes in 2014 to this week’s Bryson DeChambeau slash-and-gouge from the cabbage, when only a single hole — as opposed to an 18-hole score — is on the line, the best players in the world are more willing to try to pull off the improbable.
Case in point: Tiger on the 10th hole at Austin Country Club on Thursday. Having blown his approach shot over the back of the green and into a bush, playing competitor Brandt Snedeker had already mentally tallied the hole as a win.
“(I was) waiting to be 2-up on (the 11th) tee,” Snedeker said. “I thought it was over. I thought he was wasting his time over there. It’s just the kind of stuff he pulls. I don’t know what he did. I don’t know how he got that up-and-down. Nobody else would probably even try to hit it.”
Instead of holding a 2-up cushion, Tiger drained the five-footer for par to halve the hole. The two traded wins on the 13th and 14th holes to head to the home stretch with Snedeker still up one and feeling the heat from not only Tiger, but the fans and even his children.
“I said I’m probably the most hated man in Texas right now for a few holes,” Snedeker said. “I bet you my kids were probably rooting for him late in the round.”
To the dismay of fans and Snedeker’s children, the Vanderbilt product closed out Woods 2&1 on the 17th hole, putting Woods’ weekend in jeopardy. Facing off against Patrick Cantlay on Friday, Woods needs to win his match and have Snedeker lose or halve his match against Aaron Wise to have any chance to play the weekend.