February 02, 2017

Tiger’s Omega Dubai Desert Classic press conference: Thursday

Q: Obviously not what you were looking for today. Could you just sum it all up?

TIGER WOODS: Well, I didn’t hit the ball very well. I left probably about 16 putts short. I just couldn’t get the speed of these things, and consequently, it added up to a pretty high number.

Q: Yesterday you talked about wanting to have the swing that didn’t have any pain, but early on, it looked like you were in pain. Were you, or could you just describe what you’re going through when you’re starting out the round?

TIGER WOODS: No, I wasn’t in pain at all. I was just trying to hit shots, and I wasn’t doing a very good job. At the end I finally hit some good ones, but damage had already been done. On top of that, I could have hung in there, I could have shot something near even par if I would have made some putts, but I made nothing.

Q: Was it the speed of the greens?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I just could not hit the putts hard enough. I left every putt short. What I thought was downgrain, downwind, would be quick, downhill, and I still came up short. Into the wind, uphill putts into the grain, I put a little more hinge on it going back to try to get a little more hit to it, and it still didn’t work.

So I’ll try to figure something out, maybe more left hip on it, something, a little more weight, do something to try to get some of these putts to the hole.

Q: Is it hard for you to stay upbeat now and stay positive? What keeps you, you know, working through this?

TIGER WOODS: Well, I’ve got to get to somehow. Hopefully this wind blows tomorrow, and I shoot a good round and get back to even par now. That’s certainly not out of the realm of winning the golf tournament.

But I have to go out there and do it, I have to go out there and execute and it’s going to be tough, and hopefully it is tough and I can play a really solid round, and give myself more looks. I mean, I haven’t given myself a lot of looks at birdies, and I need to give myself a lot more looks.

Q: Different course and different circumstances, but are you not — is something not quite as good as it was in the Bahamas, where you had a lot of good ball-striking?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, you know, I did, I drove it better certainly in the Bahamas, I really did. I don’t know why. If I could — if I knew, I could tell you right now. But there’s something that’s different. I know the drive — the last two drives I hit off of 8 and 9 today, there’s something different. I need to figure out what the hell I did that was different, and then replicate it for another, you know, hopefully another 54 more holes.

Q: Is it hard for you to stay patient on days like this?

TIGER WOODS: Patient, a little bit, sometimes, but I’m fighting my ass off to try and shoot a score. I’m trying to get back to even par, and once I get back to even par, try and get 1- or 2-under. Just try and creep my way back. I kept telling Joey, I said, if we could get to even par at the turn, we have two drivable, three short, come on, maybe we can get to under par for the round, we can get this thing going, we can get it moving. And it just never materialised. I never did it.