Tiger Woods bogied the final two holes, but it was enough for him to earn his second PGA Tour victory of the year and third victory overall as he held off David Toms and Camilo Villegas to win the Ford Championship on Sunday at Doral in Miami.
The victory gives Woods back-to-back triumphs at Doral, making him the first golfer in 25 years to defend his title. Woods finished at 20-under 268 and earned $990,000 for the victory, the 48th PGA Tour victory of his career. Toms and Villegas each shot 67 to finish at 269.
Here is what they had to say following the event:
Question: Talk about Sunday again and coming down the stretch and holding everybody off.
TIGER WOODS: Well, the golf course was playing a little bit faster today. The greens, especially, they were really quick. A couple of putts out there reminded me a little bit of Augusta how they are. You just had to be patient and still understand that you had to make birdies. The guys ahead of me, Dave Toms and Camilo, were making birdies. So even the greens are getting a little bit quicker, so I had to be aggressive and still had to try to make some birdies.
Q. How aware were you of the situation when you were playing 17, did you know you were two ahead?
TIGER WOODS: I knew that there was a board there, and after I knocked it over, I looked over at the board and saw that DT had made par, so I had a two shot lead, yes.
Q. From 18, what point when you got to your ball did you see David and figure out what was going on?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I saw where well, we were on the tee, we were walking off the tee and I saw David was over to the right. I was just hoping I could grab a lie so that if I had to make a 4, I could. So once David Toms had made his mistake, I just said anything in the back bleachers, right bleachers, just anything over there to the right and over the water is all I had to do, just trying to play for 5. I wasn't even trying to make par.
Q. Did you have the kind of lie that if you had made that putt you could have hit the green?
TIGER WOODS: I could have hit the green, yeah, but I didn't have to. So just try to play anything to the right, just take the water completely out of play, 9 iron.
Q. Can you talk about the situation in the bunker on 18, the lie?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I saw it bounce over the hill and I'm thinking, well it's perfect right in the middle of the bunker and if not it looked like it had enough steam to get on the upslope of the other side, no biggie, I got over there, didn't see it, didn't see it and finally saw it and, oh, boy. It was all right, you know. I actually caught a break where they were raking the edges and rolled up on top of one of those rake marks, so I had a little bit of a cushion underneath it. If it had settled down into those rake marks, I would have had a hard time keeping the ball on the green.
Q. Last year at this time, I guess the swing changes were almost there, with this victory at Doral how far ahead of the game are you as opposed to this time last year when you won here?
TIGER WOODS: Oh, a lot further. I'm able to hit so many more golf shots now than I could last year at this time, and on top of that, I could fix it while I'm out there playing. Last year at this time, I had so many things I was still working on that I had a hard time fixing it because if I hit one shot, it could be three, four different things I needed to work on to try and rectify that shot.
Now I know exactly what to do and I can rectify it on the very next shot.
Q. You corrected things yesterday midstream after the shot on nine? Could you have done as good a job of that last year at this time as you did yesterday?
TIGER WOODS: Not really. I would have had to have hit different shots. I would have had to overshape the golf ball in order to get in the clubhouse. I couldn't find finite shots and just work the ball a few feet left or right or up and down. I didn't have that ability before.
Q. Do you think that, talking about how some of the guys are alleviating some of the pressure on you coming down the stretch in your last few victories, does that help?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, you think? (Laughter).
Q. You're obviously aware of it.
TIGER WOODS: I look at it this way, I put myself there. So if I put myself there enough times, those things are going to happen, as well as other guys are going to make birdies to beat me, that's the way it goes. As long as I'm there each and every time, it's not a bad place to be.
Q. Can you just talk about your week overall, the crowd obviously in your favor, how much fun was it for you?
CAMILO VILLEGAS: Oh, it was just unbelievable. It's hard to describe in words. I knew there were Colombian people in Miami, but I didn't know there were that many. It was really fun and they motivated me.
I think I've learned to like big crowds. I played with Michelle Wie in Hawaii and that felt great, and FBR, biggest crowds of the year, that felt awesome. This week, very exciting crowd and I felt good again and played well. So, I like it, I enjoy it.
Q. What do you think you need to work on to take the next step?
CAMILO VILLEGAS: I don't know. I just think I've got to keep doing what I'm doing. I've been working hard in the weight room and there are some little things I need to work on. I've been working hard on my swing. I've been working hard on my mental game.
Out here, you've just got to keep working and working. You cannot take a nap or everybody will rush and go by you.
Q: David, I know the finish wasn't what you wanted exactly, but talk about just the competition out there and trying to get into the lead.
DAVID TOMS: I had a lot of fun playing golf out there today. You know, trying to catch Tiger Woods, getting close, and ultimately in the end, not quite getting there. But, you know, it was just I enjoyed the challenge, the fans were into it. They were cheering me on and I know there were a lot of them out there. Just one of those days where that's one of the reason why I play the Tour. Just the bottom line; getting in the hunt, having a chance to win, whether you screw up or you don't or you come out on top, I think that's the beauty of it. That's the beauty of sports. You know, that's why I play.
I know I cost myself a lot of money on the last hole, but really; it's about that, but in the end, it's really not. It was having a chance to win. You know, my family was in the mountain snow skiing this weekend and I desperately wanted to be there with them and having a good time. I came down here because I've played well here, I knew that if I played well, I was going to have a chance to win this golf tournament. So I made the right decision to come down here and play.
And that's why I was here, days like today.
Q. Can you think of a week where you've played better and didn't win?
DAVID TOMS: You know, yes, because yesterday I didn't feel like I played well at all. My short game kept me in there all day. My driving was not very good. My iron shots, every time I had a chance to hit a good shot, I didn't hit a very good one and I wasn't in control of what I was doing. And ultimately, that's the round that cost me the golf tournament. The other days, I played pretty solid.
It goes to show you. When you play against Tiger, you can't slip up. You just have to play solid every day. Ultimately, the third round that I played here is the one that cost me the golf tournament.
Transcripts provided by ASAP Sports.
March 7, 2006
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