Tiger Woods barefoot, saves par at Honda Classic

Stuart Franklin

Tiger Woods said the conditions would be wet out there for the opening round of the Honda Classic, but he probably did not count on it being quite that soggy.

After hitting his tee shot on the par-4 sixth hole (his 15th of the day) into a hazard, Woods traded his shoes and socks for rain pants and splashed the half-submerged ball some 80 yards out of the water and back to the fairway.

Woods knocked his next shot to within eight feet and made par -- a score he said saved his game on a day when he started play in chilly, grey conditions.

"I wasn’t trying to advance it very far, just make sure I got it back in the fairway and give myself some kind of wedge shot in there," Woods said after carding an even-round 70. "The up-and-down on six out of the hazard was what turned the round around."

Woods theorized he could have easily made a six and been 3-over at that point (with two bogeys and a birdie already on the card). Instead, he posted a par, birdied the par-3 seventh by canning a 20-foot putt, and parred his way in.

"It was a big turn-around," said Woods, who, despite the birdie-saver on seven, struggled with his flat stick to the tune of 32 putts overall.

With several golfers in the afternoon wave still on the course, Woods was six shots back of Camilo Villegas, the leader in the clubhouse at 6-under.


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