With six holes left in his second round, Tiger Woods is now 10-under and in sole possession of first place at the 2013 Players Championship. The Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass is not a favorite of Tiger's, with only one career win and non-contention since 2009. He talked about the tricky layout of the course, and it's a tournament where he feels obligated to show up annually. It may be the "fifth major" but it's not one of his preferential destinations like Torrey Pines, Doral, Bay Hill, or Firestone. But despite the rough track record here, Woods is taking the same route to the top of the leaderboard that he does at those other annual stops, by dominating the par-5s on his way to the midpoint lead.
It was at the par-5 second that Woods jumped into a share of the lead for the first time this week, draining an eagle to get to 9-under for the championship. Tiger sent a laser off the tee that left him 170 yards into the green. He put his approach shot pin high on the back of the green, but still had more than 20 feet to the hole. Tiger's ball, however, never left the center of the cup and he started walking towards the hole before it ever went in for the eagle 3. He's now 7-under through the first seven par-5s he's played this week, and the eagle made up for a disappointing par at No. 11 early in his round.
At No. 3, Tiger had a chance to take the lead outright, but he left a birdie putt short to stay even with Lee Westwood, Kevin Chappell, and Roberto Castro, who still has to tee off. One hole later, however, Woods did not miss the birdie chance and drained the short putt to get to 10-under and take the lead. It's a course where he hasn't been comfortable recently, but with no wind, he's been sticking his iron approach shots all day and did it again at No. 4 to set up the leading birdie.
Westwood was the biggest mover of the day ahead of Tiger, eagling his second hole to start an outward nine of 31. The Englishman's birdie at No. 2, his 11th hole of the day, made him the first to match Castro, the 18-hole leader. That wouldn't last long with Woods coming a few groups later. The conditions are once again perfect for rounds in the mid-to-low 60s, and it's no surprise that Tiger chased down, and passed, Castro before the first-round leader could even hit a shot.
Here's a current snapshot of the leaderboard:
|-9||Roberto Castro||12:46 PM|
|-6||Charles Howell III||17|
|-6||Zach Johnson||01:49 PM|
|-6||Rory McIlroy||01:49 PM|