Saturday 24 February 2018

Woods just needs rub of the green

Tiger Woods believes just one thing stands between him and a successful defence of his Australian Masters crown -- the notoriously tricky Victoria Golf Club greens.

Woods may be nine shots off halfway leader Adam Bland heading into the weekend after a lacklustre 72, but the world No2 knows that having had 33 putts in each of his two rounds, it will only take some form on the greens to change things dramatically.

"It was a good test out there. I struggled on the greens again. The greens were a little bit slower than yesterday and I kept missing every putt on the high side. I thought the ball would swing a bit more, but it just never did," he said.

A big threat is likely to come from world no 70 Sergio Garcia, who surged into contention with a sublime 65, the best round of the day, to sit at four-under.

Garcia, who battled with a two-over opening round, was the only player in the field with a morning tee time not to concede a stroke to par. And afterwards he admitted he had exceeded his own expectations.

"I just wanted to go out there and play decent, shoot maybe two or three-under and make sure that I could be here for the weekend," said Garcia.

Meanwhile, Tandi Cuningham is top of the leaderboard at the Hero Honda Women's Indian Open after a blemish-free second round 68 (140) at the DLF Golf and Country Club in Delhi.

Ireland's Rebecca Coakley had a 72 for a 148 and Martina Gillen is on 150 after a 77 -- both made it through to the weekend. Hazel Kavan-agh and Tara Delaney failed to make the cut.

Irish Independent

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