Mickelson shrugs off 5th Players MC in 6 years

Mickelson shrugs off 5th Players MC in 6 years

The Open, which will be held at Carnoustie in July, announced Woods' entry into the event in a press release on Wednesday night.

While it wasn't an ideal start to the Players for Woods, he did fare much better than his playing partners, Rickie Fowler and Phil Mickelson, in what was billed as a super-grouping. Follow along to find out.

"It was really cool yesterday, especially the first nine holes", Skovron said. "I figured I was probably close", he said.

A further six players, including defending champion, Si Woo Kim of Korea and former Sawgrass victor Matt Kuchar, share seventh place. "This golf course is playing a little bit on the easier side". "I feel like I'm putting well, I'm just never inside that range which I should be with the irons I'm having".

Woods plans to play in The Open for the 20 time when he arrives at the renowned Angus links to join the world's best golfers in the pursuit of the coveted Claret Jug. Mickelson shot an even-par 72, while Woods shot 66 and won the tournament the next day.

"Either way, there is enormous expectation about the event and we expect healthy numbers - many thousands of fans - to come to Ballyliffin in July".

Woods needed a few more putts to drop on a day when a host of players were going low.

Certainly, if 51-year-old Steve Stricker can shoot rounds of 67 and 69 to get into the top-10 at the tournament's midway point, then shouldn't the game's historically transcendent player be hovering somewhere on the leaderboard?

"I think it's going to be fun playing with him again", said Woods, as quoted on his official site.

"I look at the cover of the newspaper and the pairing is on there and the excitement that has been going on around here, it gets me thinking, why don't we just bypass all the ancillary stuff of a tournament and just go head-to-head and just have kind of a high stake winner-take-all match", Mickelson said with a smile.

"I think nobody does slightly overweight, middle-aged guy better than me, so this says exactly who I am".

Fowler, who teed off just in front of Mickelson on the hole, didn't do any better, also hitting his tee shot into the drink en route to a double of his own.

Kim, who past year was the youngest victor of the Players, joined legendary Jack Nicklaus as the first player since Nicklaus in 1977 to shoot an equal defending champion low first round of 67. Woods was best of the bunch with an even-par 72 but that was hardly what the PGA Tour had in mind when it grouped the best two players of their generation with the popular Fowler at TPC Sawgrass.

"I just didn't quite hit a couple of them hard enough", Woods said.