Tiger Woods entered The Open Championship as the odds-on favorite to win and, while his performance did peter off as play progressed, he certainly didn’t take himself out of the running on Thursday.
When it was all said and done, Woods shot a 3-under-par 67 to keep himself in contention – something that he maintains he’s happy with.
"I did a good job of that, and now I've got my work cut out for me the next couple of days to keep myself in a similar kind of position.''
How did the conditions impact Woods' play?
"It was pretty soft,'' he told ESPN.
"The wind wasn't blowing, and we're backing golf balls up. That's something we just don't see. On the first hole is a perfect indication; I hit a 5 iron straight at it, and it rolled out 8 feet. I can't remember the last time it does that on links golf course.
"So we knew that we needed at least to get off to a quick start on that front nine, and I figured a couple under would have been good. But I look up on the board and Scotty is going pretty low and so is everyone else. I felt I had to make a few more and I was able to.''
While Woods simply tried to keep his head above water in the opening round, Adam Scott was playing to win. He shot a 6-under-par 64 – tying a course record.
“I’m very pleased with the start,” said Scott (via the Sun-Times), who had never shot better than 68 in 12 previous Opens. “It’s nice just to take advantage of the calm conditions today. It was surprising but very pleasing to go out and play some solid golf. It’s what I haven’t done in the first rounds of the majors this year, and that was my goal here, starting the week, was to play today like it was Sunday and there was no tomorrow.
“I did a good job of that, and now I’ve got my work cut out for me the next couple of days to keep myself in a similar kind of position.”