Woods shoots 61 to take lead
Updated: 2013-08-03 14:00
AKRON, Ohio - Tiger Woods came close to shooting only the sixth 59 on the PGA Tour with an electrifying display in Friday's second round at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational before he ran out of steam with five holes to play.
Needing two more birdies for the magical number which has never been lowered, Woods narrowly missed a nine-footer at the 15th and a six-footer at the 17th on the way to a nine-under-par 61 at Firestone Country Club.
Tiger Woods of the US hits a shot from a bunker alongside the fifth hole during the second round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational golf tournament in Akron, Ohio, August 2, 2013. [Photo/Agencies]
His sizzling score equaled the course record, which he had previously tied in the second round in 2000, and gave him a commanding seven-shot lead with a 13-under total of 127.
Woods, who has triumphed a record seven times in the elite World Golf Championships (WGC) event at Firestone, is bidding to win his fifth title on the PGA Tour this year as he builds momentum for next week's PGA Championship.
"I had a lot of control today from tee to green and obviously the way I putted, I felt I was in total control of my game," the American world number one told reporters after totaling only 22 putts.
"Obviously things like that don't happen every day, and it's fun when it all comes together and I was able to take advantage of it, especially on a golf course like this.
"This is not exactly an easy golf course. As you can see, six under is in second (place), so the guys aren't tearing this apart."
Asked whether he was at all disappointed to fall short in his bid to fire his first 59, Woods replied: "Absolutely not, nope. 61 is pretty good. I'm not bummed.
"Would it have been nice to shoot 59? Yeah. I certainly had the opportunity. I had two good chances at 15 and 17 to do it.
"But the par putt at 18 was even bigger," Woods said, referring to the 26-footer he sank from the back fringe to keep his card bogey-free, prompting him to raise his right arm skyward with a pointing finger in celebration.
Defending champion Keegan Bradley and Englishman Chris Wood carded matching 68s on the challenging South Course to end the day tied for second, with Swede Henrik Stenson (70) and American Bill Haas (68) a further stroke back at five under.
Keegan Bradley of the US watches his tee shot on the seventeenth hole during the second round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational golf tournament in Akron, Ohio, August 2, 2013.[Photo/Agencies]