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Tiger storms into lead at Bay Hill

Tiger Woods stormed into the lead on Saturday at Bay Hill.

Tiger Woods stormed into the lead on Saturday at Bay Hill.

ORLANDO, Fla. --- Looking like his old imposing self, Tiger Woods surged into the third round lead at the Arnold Palmer Invitational on Saturday, setting his sights on winning an eighth Bay Hill title and retaking the number one ranking.

Four back of overnight leaders Justin Rose and Bill Haas when the day began, Woods walked off the course to thundering cheers and in full command after returning a brilliant six-under 66 for a two-shot lead over compatriots John Huh (71) and Rickie Fowler (67) as well as Briton Rose (72).

Woods, who had a disastrous end to his second round on Friday with three consecutive bogeys, stumbled out of the gate on Saturday when he found the fairway bunker with his opening drive but his putter was working early and he dropped an 11-foot putt to save par.

To no one's great surprise, he soon discovered his comfort zone on one of his all-time favourite layouts, mixing an eagle and five birdies with a single bogey.

Seven-times, including last year, Woods has triumphed at "Arnie's Place" and one more victory on Sunday would match Sam Snead's PGA Tour record for most wins in a single event.

It would also see him reclaim top spot in the world rankings from Rory McIlroy.

"Generally our schedules are such that once we figure out what golf courses we like, we tend to play them," Woods told reporters.

"That's been the case with my scheduling and look at few events over the course of my career I've played well on and this is one of them."

"Just because I've won here doesn't ensure that I'm going to win the tournament.

"The conditions are different; the game might be different, but the objective is still to put myself in position to win the golf tournament and somehow get it done on Sunday."

Certainly few will be betting against the 14-times major winner, who by all accounts is back in top form.

A birdie at 15 brought out a familiar fist pump from Woods which was followed by an eagle at 16 and an even bigger celebration.

When a long birdie putt on 17 just kissed the cup, an excited Woods danced across the green, twirling his putter like a baton.

Yes indeed, life is good again for Woods, who announced earlier this week that he was dating World Cup ski sensation Lindsey Vonn.

With all parts of his game coming together and his personal life back on track, Woods looks unstoppable heading into next month's Masters.

Following a tumultuous fall from grace, the stars have aligned for the 37-year-old as he rebuilds his life and image after the scandalous and very public breakup of his marriage.

"I enjoy it, that's why we play is to be in this position," said Woods. "It's why I've spent all that time practising and training is to be in this position."

While Woods surged world number five Rose and Haas wilted.

Rose got off to a blistering start with two birdies and an eagle on his opening four holes to build a four shot cushion but suddenly lost his way and carded five bogeys against one more birdie for an even par 72.

"Definitely a good start today, great front nine and first four holes got me flying," said Rose. "The energy disappeared big time.

"I don't know if it was fatigue or didn't eat right or something but I was struggling."

Haas was also quick out of the gate with two birdies but was undone by a pair of double-bogeys on his way to a one-over 73, which left him three off the pace alongside Spaniard Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (68), Dane Thorbjorn Olesen (66) and Americans Jimmy Walker (70) and Ken Duke (70).

Comments

VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

Excuse me! Is this the masters? Nah, I didn't think so.

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 1 year, 6 months ago

It's not a major, but beating the world's best in back to back tournaments has to be worth something to you.

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VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

Wouldn't mean anything to me. This match isn't over yet, but if he wins, more power to him. Not like I am going to lose any sleep over it. I won't be a dollar richer if he doesn't win, nor a dollar poorer if he does win. I don't know why people make a big deal about him winning, as if nobody else has ever won before. Actually it would not surprise me if he did win this tournament. He has won it 7 times before, so why would this one be any more special than the other 7 times he won it? All I am saying is let's see what he does at the Masters.

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 1 year, 6 months ago

Ok, fair enough. I'll probably flip back and forth between March Madness and the golf tourney.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 6 months ago

Tiger can't win without a hot blonde on call. How he's got another one and lookee here.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 6 months ago

You might be right Sister!!! When Tiger starts back taking blondes, he starts winning again!!! Go Tiger Go!!!! Take that VSU!!!! TIGER IS IN FIRST PLACE !!!!!!

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VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

So what, this is just another minor tournament. Let's see him choke when the Masters come up. Why do you root for Tiger anyway? He doesn't represent blacks, he doesn't even consider himself black. He won't even touch a black woman.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 6 months ago

Why do you hate Tiger because he is black...?????

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VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

They say behind every successful man is a good white woman. You notice he doesn't date black women, because basically he doesn't care about blacks.

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VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

But why do you like Tiger? Is it because he is black? If Tiger was white, would you still be talking good about him? I think that answer is no.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 6 months ago

I like good players and I dont care what color they are. You are the one obsessed with color.....

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

no, you are the one obsessed with color. I have yet to see you show support or give kudos to a non black athlete, only to black athletes like Tiger or Selena Williams etc.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 6 months ago

I dont care......He can have who he wants. As long as he wins and makes you mad I am good. You are the one who cant stand him.....

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VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

You got me all wrong, I don't hate Tiger at all. The only reason I would want him to lose is to irritate and nag you. Deep inside I like to watch Tiger play, tournaments are more interesting when he is playing. When I see golf on TV and Tiger is not on it, I sincerely can't watch it.

In fact, I am seriously thinking of going up to Augusta to watch the Masters, what about you bubba, are you gonna spend part of your guvment money to go see Tiger play? I didn't think so!

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VSU 1 year, 6 months ago

You know Sher, it was funny, I turned to NBC and it showed Rose in front at -13 & Tiger was back to -8. I am like, how did that happen so quickly? Tiger must have had a terrible hole or two, then I noticed it said third round and they were showing footage of yesterdays action because of bad weather.

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 1 year, 6 months ago

Lol, I did the same thing. I was thinking, "crap, I am going to have to eat crow, and put up with VSU rubbing that in my face".

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

I saved face, I was about that close to commenting about who is winning now, then I noticed it was a replay. That would have been embarrassing.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 6 months ago

Cut it out VSU.....you know you hate Tiger.....No new love affair sir!!! You hate Tiger b/c he is black and winning. You dont want him to be number one. You are a basic southern republican who hates blacks and taxes so be quiet.

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

You are a heap of BS, if anybody is anti and pro race it is you. You didn't answer my question, are you going to spend part of your guvment check to go see Tiger play at the masters? I'm going to, and I am using my own earned money to go see him play. I've watched Tiger play for years, watched him more than you have. If you really support him, go on up to Augusta and watch him play. You can hold up a sign saying you are Tigers #1 fan, but that ain't going to happen because you are a phoney. I bet you don't even like Tiger, you only root for him and post your comments showing support because you think it will irritate me, Well it doesn't irritate me. I laugh at it, so I put on the anti Tiger routine just to antagonize you back.

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

BTW only a true total idiot would love taxes. Yeah, I should love to have taxes taken out of my paycheck. I should wish they would take out a lot more. Gee blubba, a real humdinger you are.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 5 months ago

Awww, poor baby......listen to the flip-flopper.....now you want everybody to believe you like Tiger and hate taxes.....what a liar!!! I guess next you will be telling us you like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton!!! You cant fool us Vomit Man!!! Tiger is the best golfer in the world and has proven you stupid many times. I hope he catches Sam Snead and breaks the record for PGA wins. (Meanwhile, on your way to Augusta, I hope you get pulled over by a black police officer and get a DUI.) hahahaha!! Yes, I am a TIGER FAN and no I dont get no "GOVMENT" money....I wish I could get some.....I pay waaay too much in taxes every year!! If you need a job, you can come to my farm and shovel hog poo......you would fit right in with Juan, Ruiz, Hector, and Maria......

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

I make more money than you do from your goverment check. Maybe I can give you a job sweeping off my driveway, cleaning my toilet, mowing my yard. That ought to earn you $1.00. You don't no more live on a farm than I live in a playboy mansion. Tell the truth blubbersmith, you don't like Tiger Woods, and you didn't vote for Obama. You are just a fat aging bald white guy sitting in front of the computer all day making ouit that you are a black man supporting all these blacks. You only do this to agitate people.

You still didn't answer my question. Why don't you go to Augusta and see Tiger in person? Why? because you know you wouldn't spend a penny to watch Tiger play. You are a phony blubbersmith. A big fat aging balding white man who is so unhappy with himself, he has to spead lies to attempt to agitate people.

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bubbasmithredneck 1 year, 5 months ago

Is that the best you can do???? You are terrible! Cant you make up any better lies than that???? Try again Vomit!!! You are losing your marbles. You are obsessed with stupidity.....

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VSU 1 year, 5 months ago

I am obsessed with telling the truth. You know you hate Tiger, your support for Tiger is just an attempt to agitate me, but the problem is, nothing you say can agitate me. In your own warped mind you think it does, but I laugh at your comments. When you get agitated, you go back to your vomit talk again. If you think vomit has any affect on me, you are sadly mistaken. So don't hate me for telling the truth, hate yourself for the truth being known.

Tiger Rules!!!!! Bubba Drools!!!!!

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