Saturday 16 December 2017

Woods fired up for Invitational

Former world number one Tiger Woods was in typically bullish mood as he looked ahead to the two events which will define his season.

Woods has played just two tournaments since undergoing back surgery in March, missing the cut in the Quicken Loans National and finishing 69th in the Open Championship.

The 14-time major winner was asked at Royal Liverpool what an acceptable finishing position would be and replied "first," but after a promising opening 69 faded to his worst ever 72-hole finish in a major as a professional.

But that did not stop the 38-year-old from having the same goals in this week's WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club and next week's US PGA Championship at Valhalla, two venues where he has enjoyed previous success.

Woods has won eight times in Akron, while he won the US PGA at Valhalla in 2000 after a three-hole play-off with Bob May.

"I would like to win these next two weeks and not have to worry about anything and that's the plan," Woods told a pre-tournament press conference in Akron.

"That's the mindset and the focus and we will see how it feels after these weeks.

"I am so far out of it right now that I need to play well and get myself into the (FedEx Cup) play-offs and hopefully play all four weeks. Unfortunately I have been in this position before (after injury in 2011) and did not make it.

"Hopefully this go around will be a little better."

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