Woods not in the driving seat
Published 18/07/2014 | 15:43
Three-time champion Tiger Woods abandoned his no-driver policy for the second round of the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool and it cost him dearly.
When the American won the third and last of his Claret Jugs on this course in 2006 he famously used the club just once in 72 holes.
He pulled it out of the bag twice in his first two holes on day two and it cost him three shots.
Woods was so wide off the first - playing downwind today - he pulled his ball into the knee-high rough alongside the 18th fairway, could not find the green with either his second or third shots and two-putted from 15 feet.
Undeterred he reached for driver again and this time drilled it into the right rough, flew the green with his approach and failed to get up and down.
Having taken an iron off the third he proceeded to miss that green as well but managed to salvage par by chipping to two feet.
By that time overnight leader Rory McIlroy had surrendered his position at the top of the leaderboard after also overshooting the first green and only getting his recovery to within 15 feet.
He avoided repeating Woods' error with a regulation par at the next, having yesterday stressed that he wanted to play himself steadily into his round.
Francesco Molinari did hold top spot after three birdies and a bogey in his opening five holes but he came crashing down by hitting his tee shot out of bounds at the eighth to record a double-bogey six to drop to four under.
That left the lead held by compatriot Matteo Manassero through seven holes, South Africa's George Coetzee, who carded a 69 in the morning to get to five under, and Sergio Garcia after an eventful start.
The Spaniard bogeyed the first after pulling a drive on to the 18th but responded impressively with an eagle at the par-four second - the same hole he pitched in a nine-iron in 2006 - when his approach from the semi-rough dropped into the cup to lift him to five under.
He gave back a shot after three-putting from 40 feet at the third but returned to five under with a birdie at the par-five fifth after getting up and down from a bunker.
McIlroy then reclaimed the lead with a birdie on the downwind par-five fifth hole - narrowly missing from 40 feet for eagle - and went two ahead with another birdie on the sixth.
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