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In Transition – Furyk Wins At Innisbrook

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It might not have been the pretty finish that many a story is written about but Jim Furyk did what was necessary Sunday to return to the winner’s circle on the PGA Tour.

Furyk, winless since the 2007 RBC Canadian Open, earned his 14th career PGA Tour victory at the Transitions Championship by showing great resolve, especially on the putting surfaces. His 271 total (-13) was just enough to keep him ahead of charging K.J. Choi (272) and Bubba Watson (273).

With a multiple stroke lead through part of the day Furyk stayed on point and made some critical putts when he had to, both for birdies and pars. His biggest bauble came on 18 after an errant tee shot. From a sketchy lie in the right woods he hit an uncharacteristic approach that he even called “pretty stupid” immediately after the round.

“The nerves got me, honestly,” said what looked like a very relieved Furyk to NBC right after he holed out the winning putt.

It is hard to believe a player of Furyk’s stature would feel nervous about winning a regular PGA Tour event but it just goes to show you how much it meant to him to get back to his winning ways.

Furyk, who will turn 40 in May, is in his 17th season on the PGA Tour and is hardly used to going more than 2 years without a win. That is not to say he has not had a few chances in the last 58 official PGA Tour events since Sunday, July 29, 2007 when he defended his RBC Canadian Open Championship. He has piled up 20 top-tens in that time and won almost (USD) $4 million last year alone. But money does not replace wins for successful PGA Tour pros and that was certainly the case for Furyk, the 2003 US Open Champion.

That is not to say he will not enjoy the $972,000 for today’s win but the chance to hold a real trophy again (Furyk won the unofficial Chevron World Challenge last December) was what he was really seeking.

Furyk started the day with a three-stroke lead and when he finally got to tee it up after a multi-hour weather delay he showed he wanted to stay on top. After Choi pressed him with a fury of opening birdies Furyk responded with his own on the 8th, 11th, and 12th hole to re-establish his three-stroke margin. Bogeys on 13, 15, and 18 were not enough to keep him from his goal.

Sadly Furyk’s win became a bit of afterthought Sunday with the announcement and airing of Tiger Woods interviews on ESPN and Golf Channel just as he finished up on the Copperhead course but the newly minted tour winner did not care that his win might be overshadowed in the news on Monday. “I won the damn thing, and it really doesn’t matter to me,” he said regarding the subject. 

Furyk looked very intense this week at Innisbrook (inc. photo taken Tuesday during a long range session) and struck the ball with determination. Even his competitors noticed a renewed focus in his play. K.J. Choi, who actually tied him early in the round, was impressed. “You know, I felt like if I shot 4-under or better, you know, I could go into a playoff, or even come up with a win. But you know; my hat is off to Jim. He just played very well today. It's probably the best round of golf I've seen him play recently, and he putted great, too.”

The champ did play well and he did so on a very difficult course; one the players really respect. It added up to a satisfying result. “There isn’t a player on this course that wouldn’t call this a top-ten course on tour,” said Furyk who added that it was one of the reasons why the event attracted such a good field. “I’m proud of the fact that this was played on a pretty tough against some pretty good players.”

With the win Jim Furyk should move to 6th in the Official World Golf Rankings and leaps from 84th to 7th in the FedEx Cup standings.

He is in the field for the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard next week at Bay Hill in Orlando.

This report provided to GolfWRX.com by Flagstick Golf Magazine (www.flagstick.com)

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Tour News

Tiger Woods fires second-round 76, will miss Genesis Open cut

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Tiger Woods’ trip to Los Angeles is over sooner than he’d hoped. Woods fired a 5-over 76 during the second round of the Genesis Open to miss the presumed cut at Riviera by four strokes (the second round won’t be completed until Saturday morning due to darkness).

Hopes were high Woods would continue to build on a T-23 finish at the Farmers Insurance Open. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, as the driving woes that plagued him at Torrey Pines followed him to the Riv, despite changing shafts in his TaylorMade M3.

RELATED: Tiger Woods WITB

Wayward off the tee, Woods made eight bogeys Friday, unable to grind out a decent score as he did with his opening-round 1-over 72. He was unable to rely on his putter the way did in this first round, three-putting back-to-back holes (No. 11 and 12). A stretch of three straight bogeys sunk Woods’ hopes of hanging around for the weekend.

(c/o PGATour.com)

We won’t have to wait long to see the Big Cat back in action, however, as Woods committed to next week’s Honda Classic at PGA National in Florida. Woods most recently put a peg in the ground at the course in 2014, where he ultimately withdrew due to back spasms.

The 79-time PGA Tour winner hasn’t teed it in back-to-back weeks since 2015, so while fans may not be encouraged by his play, at least he continues to be free from any issues with his surgically repaired back.

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Tiger Woods shoots an opening-round 72 (1-over) at the 2018 Genesis Open

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After hitting just 17 fairways all week at the 2018 Farmers Insurance Open, where he finished T23, Tiger Woods switched driver shafts and added 0.75 degrees of loft in his TaylorMade M3 driver ahead of the 2018 Genesis Open this week. He went from using a Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro White 70TX shaft, to a Matrix TP6HDe shaft — he used a TP7HDe shaft back in 2015.

So how did the switch work out for him at Riviera CC on Thursday?

Well, he hit driver 9 times during his round of 72 strokes; four went right — one of which got lost in a tree and he had to re-tee — one went left, and four found the fairway. He hit 8-of-14 fairways in total; no Fred Funk, but an improvement. Woods’ bigger issue on Thursday, actually, was that he hit only 7 greens in regulation, leaving himself a few tricky up-and-downs. Despite hitting only 38 percent of greens, Woods managed to make 5 birdies, and he continues displaying prowess on the greens (1.784 Strokes Gained Putting, and 82 feet worth of putts made).

He also showed some flashes of old Tiger with Arnie-esque follow through.

Of course, that means he missed the fairway way right, and he did go onto bogey the hole, but the shot made for some excitement on golf twitter, at least.

According to @RandallMellGC, Tiger described his round in a post-round interview: “I fought hard. I made a few simple, silly mistakes, bad shots here and there, missed on the wrong side, made a few birdies as well. 1-over’s not bad.”

Yea, that’s about right.

Tiger currently sits at T66, and six shots off the leader. Lots of golf to play, but he’ll likely be contending with the cutline come Friday afternoon. How do you think Tiger will finish this week at the 2018 Genesis Open?

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Custom Camerons, wedge stampings, a 6-hybrid, and Tiger wearing Tennis shoes?

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Yesterday, we brought you shots of Thomas Pieters’ iron stamping, Adam Scott’s new (shorter) wand, and more.

Today, we’ve got some more choice shots from the range at Riviera from Tuesday’s practice. Strap in for a sampling from a cornucopia of WITB shots and a helping of Tiger Woods (who we feature in two galleries). We also discussed his new driver shaft yesterday, so if you missed that piece, check it out.

On to the pictures.

First up, Wesley Bryan looks to be gaming an some Anthony Taranto artistry with his 54-degree Mack Daddy 4 wedge. Do work, indeed!

Ted Potter, Jr. won more than a million dollars at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am last week. But as the check hasn’t come yet, he hasn’t been able to buy Goo Gone to take the tape residue off the bottom of his putter.

A custom Cam for Rafa Cabrera Bello.

…and William McGirt.

#GrindGoals (Luke Donald’s 60-degree Mizuno T7)

Vijay Singh looks to have gotten his foot stuck in a bear trap, and yet he’s still practicing!

The most famous putter in golf, and Nike Vapor Advantage tennis shoes for Tiger?

Apparently, all the weight modification available on PXG 0311 irons was insufficient for Charl Schwartzel.

When your name scripting matches your sponsor’s script…

This is not the WITB of a 20-handicapper, rather Camilo Villegas may be the only Tour pro gaming a 6-hybrid.

So much is going on with Camilo Villegas’ irons…

You’ve seen custom stampings, but how about Bubba Watson’s custom shaft and custom shaft graphic?

When you’re the only PGA Tour professional to own a candy store, your wedge imagery reflects that fact.

The Big Cat browsing GolfWRX on mobile, no doubt…

If you’d like to dig deeper, we have two galleries of range photos from the Riv, plus 13 (!) WITB threads. Dig in!

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