Dustin Johnson

June 20, 2010 by USA Post 

Dustin Johnson Tiger WoodsDustin Johnson CBSSports – Pebble Beach, Calif. – The crowd did not like Tiger Woods at the beginning of the round on Saturday. From the start, Woods might even have agreed. He bogeyed his second hole. Bogey’s third hole. When I caught up with Woods on No. 4, was 10 strokes back and talk angrily to himself – and the crowd at the U.S. Open spoke angrily to him.

“I hate you, Tiger! a guy yelled as Woods passed us on No. 4.

“Go Phil!” Shouted another. This audience were foreigners, but they high fived. A third friend wanted in.

“Na-na-na-no No. 1 after this week,” the man shouted, referencing the ability to surpass Phil Mickelson Woods atop the world rankings if he wins the 110th U.S. Open.

So turn Woods began. That is how it ended:

With the largest roar of the day.

He arrived after the second shot from Woods on the par-5 hole. He was behind the cursed tree in the fairway, 260 yards from the green and he pulled out a 3-wood over the Pacific Ocean, cut back into the wind, and he looked on the earth green and roll into the hole for 15. Two putts gave him his third consecutive birdie for a 5-under 66, tied for the lowest round of the tournament and five strokes behind leader Dustin Johnson, but he was the second shot over the Pacific that has caused the noise. Greenside I was when it happened, and the reaction was thunderous. Columnist Steve Elling golf was on the 10th hole – the absolute farthest place on the course of No. 18, about a mile away – and he heard the noise. Not only the noise. He heard the noise.

There must be 10,000 people around the green. I have not heard one of them shouted: “I hate you, Tiger! But I did hear a woman shouting: “We love you, Tiger! And I heard a man cry, “Tiger, you’re the greatest! “And then, several people applauded. The appreciation of the Tiger was such that, as he stood with his putter on his eagle attempt, a baby began to coo. This man beside me, swear God, the baby stared and muttered a shhhhh “!”

The lesson I learned from all this? People want to love again Tiger. Maybe not as much as they liked before – maybe it’s impossible, after a sex scandal that has not stopped producing title seven months later – but as far as it may from love. But for the love they need Tiger to see him play his best, and then they can kiss him for his ferocity on the field, if not for his loyalty outside. This happened on Saturday.

Like it or not, golf needs Woods. He is not here craft – golf. Woods is a big deal. the ratings are higher for the events, he plays that happened he did not, and they were even higher when he is nominated. Watch the opinions of the fourth round Sunday. They will be enormous. The sport is more fun when he is at his best. It’s not just me talking – is the crowd on Saturday.

Well, they did not say so much as they were murmurs. This was the reaction after Woods’ birdie at No. 17 was posted on the scoreboard huge around the 18th green. It was his second consecutive birdie, and he drew her to even par, five shots behind Johnson at this time. When Woods went birdie, the crowd did not expensive – it was panting. The sensation was visceral, and hiccups can be translated like this: Tiger’s back, and we observe a reality!

On the green at No. 18 were Luke Donald and Fred Funk, but the crowd did not care about that. All heads turned toward the tee about 600 meters, and Woods’ tee shot into the channel has a greater response than putts of Donald and Funk. When Funk threaded to par at No. 18, a fan shouted during polite applause, “OK, it’s time for Tiger,” and which drew more applause than putt Funk.

Then came suddenly sensational Woods Green, and to hear the ovation miles, and when Woods was finished, it was not just relieved to be in the running for a sequence of four major events that included a withdrawal dismal Championship players and a failure to cut at Quail Hollow. Nope. Woods was thinking about winning this thing.

Therefore, after Woods was introduced into the media tent for his press conference post-round, he was not listening to the introduction of light USGA official Beth Murrison’s. Same as Murrison described his “brilliant 66 today, Woods was leaning back in his chair, looking behind the head Murrison screen television in the corner. The screen showed Dustin Johnson in the 12th hole. Johnson Woods looked like a lion looks at a gnu.

Ultimately, however, Woods has turned his attention to the press and said his mastery of the golf ball. When Woods struggles with his ball striking, he often struggled with the distance – his “numbers” as he calls it. On a bad day, his 7-iron to go 10 yards farther than normal, which is 10 meters shorter. Anyway, it’s the difference between having a birdie-spindle high … or a chip.

“It feels good to be able to control my ball, especially in this wind,” Woods said. “I was landing the ball on my numbers. Whether in the wind or downwind, j ‘I was landing the ball on my numbers. ”

Woods has been lost formatting or zero, and he himself was leaving birdie putts uphill. It’s a key on the greens of Pebble Beach, with grass growing Poa annua unevenly – and so quickly – that is literally changing the face of the morning to evening. On Thursday, Woods called the Greens “terrible”. On Friday, the USGA bristled at those comments. On Saturday, Woods has not declined.

“Many players have the same opinion,” Woods said. “They just did not say.”

With uphill putts, Woods was able to make aggressive runs at the hole, taking a length inconsistent with the poa out of the equation. He birdied seven holes, seven of them on the rolls before and one of them – a 20-foot on No. 17 – which has shocked the descent and Woods fell into the cup.

“Not a putt, I expected to do,” he said. “Was not even trying to do.”

But what happens when Woods is well. Fall putts. Notices place.

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