Reports of Tiger Woods’ length and prowess off the tee have dominated the news since the 14-time major champion announced he would be returning to the PGA Tour. However, the biggest question mark in Woods’ game in recent years has been his once-flawless short game.
Woods struggled with what many have described as the chipping yips, most notably at the 2015 Waste Management Phoenix Open. Ever since then, Woods has hit squirrely shots around the greens, despite adamantly arguing that he’s simply working on a minor swing adjustment that was forcing him to hit some pitches and chips poorly.
Having played a few (relatively) public rounds in the lead-up to this week’s Hero World Challenge, Woods’ short game has been a topic of intrigue. Playing a practice round with Patrick Reed on Monday in the Bahamas, there were finally some takeaways from where his short game stands.
GolfWRX.com’s man on the ground at the Hero received word from inside the ropes that Woods’ short game appeared “a lil off.”
All reports thus far regarding the state of Tiger Woods’ game and health have been glowing ahead of the 2017 Hero World Challenge. That includes comments from Tiger himself, Brad Faxon, on-course reports and his Monday practice round playing partner Patrick Reed. Apparently, Woods outdrove bomber Dustin Johnson “half the time” during a Sunday practice round, and outdrove Reed all day at Albany in the Bahamas on Monday. He’s also feeling “pain free,” in his own words, which Woods himself finds “remarkable.”
After Woods’ Monday practice round with Reed, however, we spoke to a source who was inside the ropes for the duration of the 9 holes; he expressed concern about Woods’ short game.
“Off the tee was really good,” said our inside source. “Irons pretty solid. Short game was a lil off. So we’ll see come competition time.”
Here’s a look at his chipping motion that was posted on Twitter on Monday.
Tiger played 9 with Patrick Reed, who said thing he was most impressed with were flighted shots, ones from rough and those around green. Here’s TW chipping … pic.twitter.com/s1hFs9nSUQ
— Brian Wacker (@brianwacker1) November 27, 2017
Remember, the last time we saw Woods in competition he suffered from yip-like symptoms with his wedges. He also hasn’t played in a golf tournament since February in the Dubai Desert Classic, so a rusty short game would certainly be expected.
The jury still appears to be out on just how “off” Woods’ short game is. According to the Golf Channel’s Tiger Tracker, that little bit off Woods appeared to one insider looked to be 8-out-of-10 to another.
Solid 8. https://t.co/0PUxK7UK9O
— GC Tiger Tracker (@GCTigerTracker) November 27, 2017
We’ll have to wait and see what Thursday’s first round brings.
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