So right now it looks like Tiger's going to be in the final pairing on another Sunday in Augusta. He must have torn up the course, right? No, he shot a 72 to stay at +3--still tied for the second-best round of the day, but he was standing on the green at 15 with a two-putt in front of him to get back to E for the tournament and proceeded to three-putt. Then he finished bogey-bogey for the second time in three days. Very un-Tiger-like.
So those damn golf writers who were beating up on the field after the first round must have been right, right? I hate to say yes, but it's true. I woke up just in time to see Stuart Appleby triple 17 when he was the only person in the field under par and realized that Tiger had gone from four down to one down in one hole. But surely Justin Rose, who looked to be playing well, would finish strong and make a statement? No, he bogeyed two of the last three holes to fall back to a tie with Tiger. What about Padraig Harrington, who shot the low round of the tournament, a 68, on Friday? Ah, he doubled 15 (a hole he had tripled on Thursday) and needed a late birdie to pull within one shot of Tiger by the end of the day. What about all the other leaders going into the weekend? Nobody broke 75. Wetterich didn't even break 80 and Vijay barely did.
The course is winning. This is still anybody's tournament. Cases in point: Retief Goosen's 70 puts him only four shots out of the lead; ditto Phil Mickelson's 73; ditto David Toms's 74; ditto Luke Donald's 75; ditto Jim Furyk's 76. Tiger has been -2 his last 24 holes, so he's gotta be the favorite, but this will not be easy even for him. You must watch the final round.