Valspar Championship: A look ahead to Sunday with Tiger Woods in contention

Posted March 12, 2018

Still, even with Casey's achievement, the headline was Tiger, which is what people love about Woods and hate about him at the same time.

So he at least knows what to expect.

"We had 112,000 people previous year, and it's going be at least 140,000, maybe 150,000", West said. "But it will be cool".

"I tried to get relaxed as early as possible and fortunately got off to a good start and kind of settled me down nicely", Conners said.

But a revivified Woods hadn't come this close since The Barclays in 2013, last time he finished second, last time he broke par in all four rounds on the PGA Tour.

Woods looked as though he might seize control after his birdie on No. 10 to reach eight under, tied for the lead. "The crowds are larger". He got up-and-down from a bunker short of the green at No. 11 for birdie, stuffed his approach to a foot on No. 12 and then holed a 20-foot birdie from just off the green at No. 13. "Tiger!" Others were yelling, "U-S-A!"

It was an incredible putt, and an extraordinary moment that seemed to end any discussion about whether Woods can compete at the highest levels of the sport again.

Conners dropped two shots in the first three holes, before settling down to trail by three shots after nine holes.

Missing, that is, until the par-three 17th, where Woods perfectly read and then executed a 43-foot birdie putt, his ball curling deliciously into the centre of the cup as the gallery went berserk. It was like that all day. "I played conservatively into the green because I wasn't as sharp as yesterday".

"I didn't think about it too much (Sunday)", Casey said. He's on the leaderboard and challenging for the lead. But that would be his only birdie until the 17th hole when Tiger's flair for the dramatic had fans downright giddy.

"I am excited", he said.

'It was also going to be a very hard week, tough conditions on a tough course, but I thought I held up really well'. I was just trying to put myself in there.

For Woods, full steam ahead to Orlando and the Arnold Palmer Invitational on Thursday. He hasn't won a tournament when trailing going into the final round since the AT&T National at Congressional in 2012. He is now among the favourites to win after being out of consideration just a few weeks ago. "He shot a low one out there and he got it done".

"This ignited it for me", Rose said upon watching a replay of his eagle.

"I keep getting a little better, " he said. I needed something to happen. I've made a few tweaks in the swing and it's paid off. "As I was walking off nine, it showed 68 and that was at four (under)".

"I didn't want to go there". But he's not the golfer in contention entering the 2018 Valspar Championship's final round on Sunday. "It wasn't the outcome I wanted, but I'll jot some things down later (Sunday night) and will be able to put it to use in the future".