Tiger Woods never looked to be in contention for the Masters’ title over the weekend. After hitting a 3-under par in the final round, his first under since the 2015 Augusta National, eventually, he finished 1-over par and tied for 32nd overall. It’s a result that once would have shocked fans and dismayed Woods but given the situation, it’s not all bad news for Tiger.
The 14-times major winner was one of the favorites going into the Masters, partly due to his performance at the Valspar Championship. In the end, Woods was not at his best and couldn’t win his fifth green jacket. He hit his irons badly for most of the week, and his putting left something to be desired.
Apart from his tie for 40th in 2012, the result at this year’s Masters is Tiger Wood’s worse finish. Yet we should remember that this is his first major event since the PGA Championship in 2015. Woods has missed the previous two years at Augusta, spending those years recovering from a serious back injury and surgery.
For Tiger Woods to be competing at this level again is impressive, and a 1-over par shows that he is heading in the right direction. The result also brings Woods back into 98th place in the rankings, though he was 16 shots behind the eventual winner Patrick Reed.
The 2018 Masters was Patrick Reed’s maiden title, making this the first year in a row that a first-time winner has taken the green jacket. Reed played a consistently immaculate game and went into the final round with a four-shot lead. It was looking like all he had to do was keep up the quality, but a hot pursuit by both Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler meant that it wasn’t going to be easy.
Spieth made an impressive comeback on the final day and looked like he might even take the title after he drew level in the final round. Though Spieth played a 9-under par game on the final day, he dropped a shot with a bogey on the final round while Reed gained one with a birdie to pull back the lead on the 14th hole.
Fowler also came charging from behind, picking up a birdie on holes 12, 13 and 15. He finished 14-under on the day but didn’t do enough to dethrone Reed, finishing in second place just one shot behind the Masters’ champion.
Rory McIlroy finished 9-under par after a disappointing last day and failed to make his career Grand Slam this year while Justin Rose, given 14/1 beforehand, finished six under and tied 12thplace.
All in all, it was a mixed Masters for Tiger Woods. On the one hand, he played a 1-under par game and placed just tied 32nd — a disappointing result on paper, especially considering he was one of the bookies’ favorites going into the event. On the other hand, he moved back into the top 100 rankings and proved to himself and his fans that he is still capable of competing in majors.
Tiger Woods has played six tournaments in 2018 over the course of 10 weeks. He will now take a break, not be playing in coming weeks. Though not confirmed, he is expected to compete in The PLAYERS Championship in May.