“Wow!” This was the expression that was swirling in my mind last Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, but for completely different reasons.
On Wednesday, I was contemplating finally being able to see Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, and Phil Mickelson tee it up in 2013. These are arguably golf’s biggest stars and they shared the same weekend together, although only one played on the weekend. These three have combined for 20 majors and 159 wins around the world. This is exactly why I couldn’t wait to see all three begin their 2013 journey.
But, it didn’t go according to plan as both Rory and Tiger missed the cut at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. Rory couldn’t find his groove from the very beginning as he shot back-to-back 75’s. Tiger, on the other hand, was still in contention after the first round when he was even-par but only five strokes behind the leader. He continued to play pretty average golf in the second round as he finished with a one-over 73. The cut line was two-over so Tiger made the cut, right? Well, he did before a rules referee informed him of a two-stroke penalty incurred on him because of wrongly taking a free drop. At least Rory and Tiger could enjoy the beautiful Abu Dhabi.
So it didn’t work out for Rory and Tiger, but how about Phil?
Well, he couldn’t enjoy Abu Dhabi because he played in California at the Humana Challenge. But on the course, his play wasn’t much better than Rory’s or Tiger’s. Like Tiger, Phil shot a first-round 72, which was one of only two even or over-par first rounds in the final top 55. From the first round on, Phil played much better, with no round over 67. But a T37 finish isn’t what Phil wanted coming in, especially when that means you finished eight strokes behind the champion.
Rory, Tiger, Phil. MC, MC, T37. Anyone see that coming because I surely didn’t. Hopefully Tiger and Phil can make me say “Wow!” this Sunday for a different reason as both compete in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, CA.