Tiger Woods and new victory

The tournament host was not here to witness the ending, the formality that was Tiger Woods celebrating on the 18th green, a victory that is bigger than the game’s biggest attraction will ever acknowledge.
Arnold Palmer took ill Sunday afternoon, a blood pressure issue sending him to the hospital and denying him a chance to watch Woods put the finishing touches on a most important win and then acknowledge the hard work with a firm handshake and hearty hug.
Palmer (82) who was being kept overnight for observation, played with more bravado and panache in his day than Woods does, but he nonetheless has always loved it when Tiger wins his tournament. Who wouldn’t? This victory was Woods’ seventh at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, and who is to say it wasn’t the biggest?
Like the King himself, fans revel in watching Woods win – and were enjoying every bit of his first victory on the PGA Tour in 923 days, back to his triumph at the 2009 BMW Championship, where Woods won for the sixth time that year and seemed on top of the golf world.
So much has transpired since then, so much negativity and personal turmoil and upheaval and injury, that many wondered if this day would ever come. Woods won for the 72nd time in his PGA Tour career with a hard-fought, final-round 70 at the Bay Hill Club & Lodge, where he took a 1-stroke lead into the final round over Graeme McDowell and won by 5.
“I think he really just kind of nailed home his comeback” – McDowell said. “Great to have a front-row seat watching maybe the greatest of all time doing what he does best, winning golf tournaments.”

Tiger Woods and new victory
Tiger Woods.

His ball safely over the water, Tiger Woods walked toward the 18th green Sunday as he had done over the last 30 months on the PGA Tour, with one big difference.
There was no mistaking that smile.
“Pure joy” – he said.
Woods finally brought the buzz back to the very thing that made him famous – winning.
Two weeks after another injury scare, Woods looked dominant as ever in that bright red shirt to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill. It was his first PGA Tour victory since a sex scandal at the end of 2009 led to one of the greatest downfalls in sports.
And with the Masters only two weeks away, Woods looks more capable than ever of resuming his pursuit of Jack Nicklaus in the majors.
Woods closed with a 2-under 70 and won by five shots over Graeme McDowell.
“I think he really just kind of nailed home his comeback” – McDowell said. “Great to have a front-row seat watching maybe the greatest of all time doing what he does best – winning golf tournaments.”
Woods had gone 923 days and 27 tour events since he last posed with a trophy, and it showed.
Kneeling to look at his line as he waited his turn to putt on the 18th, Woods tapped his putter on the ground and could barely contain a grin, knowing that the longest PGA Tour drought of his career was about to end. When he tapped in for par, he clenched his fist, screamed out: “Yeah!” and hugged his caddie, Joe LaCava.
Walking off the green, Woods extended his black cap for a sweeping wave toward the gallery.
“It’s not like winning a major championship or anything” – Woods said. “But it certainly feels really good.”

Bring on the Masters. So says Tiger Woods and so says anyone who saw him return to winning ways at the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill.
Woods beat Graeme McDowell by five shots and Ian Poulter by seven after he posted a final round 70 to win the tournament for the seventh time with an overall score of 275.
Palmer missed Woods’ triumph after being taken to hospital due to a blood pressure problem. The 82-year-old had been on the course and had made a television appearance but left before the end. He was kept in hospital overnight for observation.
For Woods it was his first PGA Tour victory for 30 months and the former world No1 is now back to sixth in the rankings after falling outside the top 50 last autumn.
Woods will be chasing his 15th major at Augusta next week but his first since the 2008 US Open. “I am excited, there’s no doubt” – he said. “It’s always fun to get there and play and I’m looking forward to the momentum I’ve built up here. I still need some work, and it’s going to be good to get a week off and work on a few things.
“I enjoyed the progression we made this week. Each day there was a little bit of fine-tuning here and there, and we were able to make those adjustments, which was good, and especially with the conditions getting more difficult on the weekend. I was able to hit some really good shots the last two days, and that’s a very good sign going into Augusta.
“It’s been a lot of hard work and I’m so thankful for a lot of people helping me out along the way. They all know who they are.”
By that he presumably meant Sean Foley, who has helped groove yet another new swing over the past 19 months, and all the physios and medics who have had to work on him.
It was only a fortnight ago that there was concern he might not even be at the Masters after pulling out of the Cadillac Championship suffering from an achilles tendon strain in his left ankle.

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