Majorus interruptus: Tiger draws out the drama, and the agony, at the 2008 U.S. Open
As I stood behind the tee box at the 389-yard 2nd hole at Torrey Pines, I figured Tiger Woods would try to recover from yet another triple bogey on the 1st hole (his third in four rounds), with a safe long iron down the middle of the fairway.
Instead, he pulled driver. When the guy next to me asked what he was hitting driver for, I said he was going to try to hit a big cut, which would place a tremendous strain on his knee.
After Woods ripped at the ball, hitting instead a push-fade that missed the short grass, he doubled over in pain and, for a moment, appeared as if he wouldn’t be able to walk off the tee box. The gallery mumbled that, perhaps, Woods was finished, that he couldn’t continue.
Tiger’s tee shot on Torrey Pines #2 – the shot that began a parade of pain.
Off course we know he did continue, and that with a 72nd-hole birdie putt, he would force a continuation into Monday.
Nevertheless, in the media tent after that classic finish, Woods was asked whether he was worried at any point that he couldn’t finish, he responded simply, “Oh, I was gonna finish.”
Immediately thereafter, he was asked point blank about his knee.
Reporter: “Is this residual soreness, or is this how it’s going to be for ever and ever?”
Tiger: “It’s different.”
Reporter: “I don’t understand….Do you know?”
Tiger: “I know.”
With a grin, and a stare—seemingly daring another follow-up question—that was that.
Tiger stares a reporter into submission after enough questions about his ailing knee.
Tiger and “Rock” (as he calls Rocco Mediate), are good friends. Said Woods, sometime after the awkward knee-question silence, “Rock is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet.”
But we’ll see if Mediate gets the same stare as that reporter.
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