Tiger Woods Finishes Worst Masters as Professional at 5-Over Par

Tiger Woods Finishes Worst Masters as Professional at 5-Over Par
Tiger Woods hits an approach shot on the first hole during the final round of the 2012 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club. Photographer: Andrew Redington/Getty Images

Tiger Woods failed to break par for the fourth straight round to finish 5-over par at golf’s Masters Tournament, his worst performance as a professional.

Woods shot a 2-over-par 74 in today’s final round at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia, after rounds of 72, 75 and 72. When he finished play, Woods was tied for 41st place, 14 shots off the lead.

The worst previous Masters finish as a professional for the four-time champion was a tie for 22nd place in 2004, when he had rounds of 75, 69, 75 and 71. He has 12 career top-10 finishes at the season’s first major championship and hadn’t finished outside the top six the past seven years.

“You’re not going to play well every week and unfortunately it was this week for me,” Woods, a 14-time major champion, told reporters after his round. “I had the wrong ball-striking week at the wrong time.”

Woods, 36, had arrived in Augusta coming off a win in his last start, at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, his first U.S. PGA Tour victory in 2 1/2 years. Woods was the pre-tournament favorite of oddsmakers, yet extends a major championship drought that stretches back to the 2008 U.S. Open.

“On a golf course like this, if you’re just a yard off here and there, you end up 40-50 feet away,” Woods said.

Par-5 Misses

Woods hit 32 of 56 fairways off the tee, a 57 percent accuracy rate that’s second-worst among the 62 players who reached the final round. He also failed to take advantage of the par-5 holes at Augusta National, with two birdies and one bogey over four rounds.

Woods didn’t have a birdie or eagle on the four par-5s in the second or third round, something he’d done only twice in his previous 17 Masters appearances.

“This is a golf course you have to dominate the par-5s and I didn’t do that all week,” Woods said.

Woods’s displeasure with his play boiled over at one point in the second round, when he dropped and then kicked his 9-iron in frustration after a poor tee shot at the par-3 16th hole. He apologized for his actions following the third round.

Woods’s next chance for a major title will come at the U.S. Open at the Olympic Club in San Francisco from June 14-17.

Asked if he still has faith in swing changes he’s made with coach Sean Foley, Woods said it remains a work in progress.

“I can get it on the range and get it dialed in there. It feels really good,” Woods said outside the Augusta National locker room. “Then when I go to the golf course I just don’t quite trust it. It just means that I need to do more reps.”

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