For the first time since his career was derailed by a sex scandal, Tiger Woods is the legitimate favourite to win a major.All of the smart analysts in golf believe Tiger will win this week’s U.S. Open, which is at San Francisco’s Olympic Club.
The course is relatively short overall and favours accuracy. Tiger seems to have found his swing, and as long as he can keep his driver in the bag and just hit 3-wood and irons off the tee, he has legitimate shot to win.
However, there’s one problem with Tiger’s game that no one seems to be talking about, and it could prevent him from grabbing his 15th major championship.
He can’t chip very well right now. At Olympic this is going to be a big problem.
It’s going to be hard to get the ball to stick to fairway, even if Tiger stripes it down the middle. The fairways are doglegs with steep slopes that will send the ball into the rough.
From the rough, Tiger, and others, will have to punch out without much control to hard greens. Holding the ball on those greens won’t be easy, and we’ll see a lot of balls slide out the back, and off the sides.
From there, Tiger will have to chip it close to save par.
While everyone is focused on the amazing flop shot Tiger hit from the rough for a birdie at his last tournament, the truth is his short game was not that hot.
Fox Sports reporter Robert Lusetich watched every one of Tiger’s shots at the Memorial and tweeted things like, “Tiger’s chipping has been horrible,” and, “Tiger’s chipping is his Achilles heel,” and so on.
If he can’t fix his chipping, then he won’t be able to scramble and save par. It’s going to be a tight tournament, and one under could be the winning score. Tiger can’t afford bogeys from a bad short game.
All that said, Tiger Woods should be the favourite. The course sets up well for him overall. But, if he struggles to chip the ball close again this week there’s no way he will win.
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