Dublin - Tiger Woods' staggeringly bad day stole the spotlight on
Saturday at the Memorial, leaving England's Justin Rose to seize the
tournament lead in relative obscurity.
Rose signed for a six-under
par 66 that gave him a 15-under total of 201 and a three-shot lead over
Italy's Francesco Molinari and Sweden's David Lingmerth.
But Woods's career-worst 85, 13 over par, was the topic of conversation as tournament host Jack Nicklaus reflected on the round.
not only surprised, I feel very bad for him," said Nicklaus, whose 18
major titles have long been the target chased by 14-time major champion
"He has struggled health-wise. He has struggled with his
short game earlier in the year. He feels like he's coming back and then
does this," he said of Woods.
"I don't have an answer for it, an explanation, I'm sure he probably doesn't either," Nicklaus said.
Not surprisingly, Woods declined to discuss the debacle, capped by a quadruple bogey eight at the 18th hole.
had a three-round total of 12-over 228, a tough week getting even
tougher as he put four balls in the water and had six bogeys and two
double bogeys - and just one birdie - before his quadruple bogey at the
It's just the latest setback in a season that saw Woods post
what was then a career-worst 82 at the Phoenix Open in January, then
take nine weeks off to work on his game.
An encouraging top-20
return at the Masters hasn't proved to be a sign of things to come,
although Woods, playing just his fifth tournament of the season, insists
he will stick to the swing changes he's implementing with instructor
Nicklaus said he thought the 39-year-old superstar,
who has slumped to 172nd in the world, should rely less on outside
advice and more on his own knowledge of his game.
"He's the only one who really knows what's going on," Nicklaus said, discussing the day in a television interview.
But Nicklaus said he believed the former world number one will get his game in shape.
"He's got such a great work ethic," Nicklaus said.
The chance that Woods can turn things around in time for the US Open in a fortnight certainly look dim.
But Nicklaus is pulling for him.
"The game needs you, Tiger," Nicklaus said.
While Woods endured a day where nearly everything went wrong, Rose enjoyed the opposite.
"It was one of those days where everything sort of went my way," he said.
had nice yardages, hit good shots. I think I stayed patient at certain
times. There's certain pin placements out there that you need to
"I felt like I putted well at times and just kept the
whole thing on track," added Rose, who had four birdies and a bogey in
his outward run, and birdied three more coming in.
the pressure on until a bogey at the par-three 16th, the Italian
finishing with five birdies and two bogeys in a three-under 69 for
Overnight leader Lingmerth fired an even par 72. He
and Molinari were one stroke in front of American Jim Furyk, who carded a
70 for 205.
Leading third-round scores on Saturday from the PGA Tour $6.2 million Memorial tournament (USA unless noted, par-72):
201 - Justin Rose (ENG) 68-67-66
204 - Francesco Molinari (ITA) 68-67-69, David Lingmerth (SWE) 67-65-72
205 - Jim Furyk 69-66-70
206 - Kevin Streelman 71-70-65, Brendon Todd 67-68-71, Hideki Matsuyama (JPN) 64-71-71, Andy Sullivan (ENG) 70-64-72
- Jason Dufner 66-67-74, Thomas Aiken (RSA) 69-68-70, Marc Leishman
(AUS) 69-67-71, Kevin Kisner 67-71, Keegan Bradley 68-74-65
208 - Kevin Na 71-71-66, Steven Bowditch (AUS) 69-71-68, Erik Compton 68-69-71, Dustin Johnson 72-71-65, Patrick Reed 72-68-68