Tiger Woods fights back to set up Austin showdown with Rory McIlroy

first_img Since you’re here… Share via Email Read more “I was fortunate enough to have things go my way,” Woods told Sky Sports. “I needed to win my match and have Aaron beat Sneds so I’m very fortunate to move through and potentially play Rory tomorrow morning.“That’s going to be a lot of fun and both of us will be ready for it.”Speaking about his eagle on the 13th, Woods added: “I thought I was going to need a three to halve the hole so I was trying to get it close enough to put a little bit of pressure on his chip shot and the next thing you know it goes in. That was a bonus.”After comfortable wins in his first two group matches, McIlroy needed only to avoid defeat by Matt Fitzpatrick to qualify for the knockout stages and held off a brief fightback on the back nine from his Ryder Cup team-mate to win by the same score, 4&2.“I think it’s really exciting for the tournament; it’s exciting for both of us,” McIlroy said of his last-16 clash with Woods. “I didn’t put up much of a fight in the Tour Championship last year [when paired in the final round] so hopefully I can give him a better game tomorrow.“I feel like pretty much all of this year it’s been close to what I would think is some of my best golf. I feel comfortable with my game, I’m driving it as good as I ever have, I’ve tidied up my iron play and I’ve found something with the putter that feels really good. I feel like I can sustain this level.”Sweden’s Henrik Stenson had become the first player into the last 16 after thrashing the former Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk 5&4 for his third straight win in the so-called ’Group of Death’, which included fellow major champions Phil Mickelson and Jason Day.“It was a big challenge and I managed to take it on,” Stenson said. “Today was the best round of golf I’ve played all year, so very happy with that. I think I hit four iron shots to tap-in distance and almost had two holes in one.” Tiger Woods US sports Rory McIlroy fancies his chances at Masters after ending drought Support The Guardian Topics Share on LinkedIn Share on Messenger Share on Facebookcenter_img Rory McIlroy Sign up to The Recap, our weekly email of editors’ picks. Share on Pinterest … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on Twitter news Share on WhatsApp A brilliant eagle helped Tiger Woods roar back from an early deficit to set up an eagerly anticipated showdown with Rory McIlroy in the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.Woods found himself two down after eight holes of his must-win contest with his fellow American Patrick Cantlay but won five of the next six on his way to a 4&2 victory at Austin Country Club.A par was enough to win the 9th after Cantlay was unfortunate to see his drive run through the fairway and into a hazard, but Woods then birdied the 11th and 12th before holing out from 80 yards for an eagle on the 13th.A birdie on the 14th took Woods three up and he was conceded another on the par-five 16th to bring an end to the match.Brandt Snedeker, who beat Woods on Thursday, would have won the group with a victory over the already eliminated Aaron Wise, only for Wise to thrash his compatriot 6&4. Reuse this content Golflast_img

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