Tiger Woods, a Presidents Cup captain, got a front row seat to watch Gary Woodland as they were paired most of the weekend together at the ZOZO Championship in Japan. Woodland, Woods, and Keegan Bradley ended up being paired together for the last 36 holes.
Woodland plead his case early for a spot on the Presidents Cup team after the first round when he tied Tiger for the lead posting a 64. Woodland went on to finish the last three rounds with a 66, 68, and 70 to finish solo 5th. After he completed the final round, Woodland talked about the back-and-forth conversations he had with Tiger about the captain’s picks.
We talked about it. We joked with each other that we both needed a pick so we’re out here trying to impress Tiger. But I think Tiger’s got a good grasp on what he wants to do.”
Woodland’s last season performance peaked with a win at the U.S. Open propelling him to 10th in the Presidents Cup rankings. He had some comments on his performance post major championship:
I kind of had a lull there after the U.S. Open, which was frustrating. But five weeks off, came back to Vegas (for the Shriners) and found some things in Vegas and it’s turned in some pretty good weeks the last couple weeks.”
Woodland added, “I’m kind of in La La Land from the standpoint where if you don’t make the team, you never know what happens, but I feel pretty good about my chances and I’m happy with where my game’s at.”
Woodland is skipping this week’s WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai, China, which means his opportunity to diversify his portfolio for a captain’s pick is over. Tiger did not comment on Woodland’s captain’s pick status after winning the ZOZO Championship for his 82 PGA Tour win.
Woodland had a colorful comment on watching Tiger this past weekend though:
The ball striking exhibition I’ve seen the last two days is a joke.”