CARNOUSTIE: Tiger Woods shook his head in frustration as a birdie putt rolled just past the lip of the 18th hole, summing up his second round at the British Open at Carnoustie on Friday.
The 42-year-old 14-time major champion ended the day as he started it, on level par, six shots off clubhouse leader Zach Johnson after second straight 71.
But it was a helter-skelter ride of a round for both the legendary golfer and the legion of fans who swarmed to follow him.
Dressed all in black with a back strap to help him suppress the pain from a sore neck, and playing the large part of his round in driving rain, his expression alternated from grimaces to a rare smile shared with his caddy.
A woeful start featuring successive bogies at the second and third — the first coming after a wayward tee shot and then a wild hack from the rough — was counter-balanced immediately with two consecutive birdies.
However, while the Tiger of old might have have built up momentum, the newer version failed to find the inspiration to do so.
A further bogey on the ninth had him turning for home at one-over but he climbed to one-under with another two birdies at the 11th and 14th, and a saved par with a long putt at the 13th had Woods pumping his fist in celebration.
Nevertheless, a bogey on the 16th once again took him back to his starting point for the round.
Despite his travails, those in front of him will still be wary of Woods pulling something out of his box of tricks over the weekend as he attempts to mark his return to this championship after a two-year hiatus in the best possible manner. —AFP