Woods strolls to victory at Bridgestone
Tiger Woods fired an even-par final round 70 to cruise to a seven-shot victory at the World Golf Championship Bridgestone Invitational for his eighth win at the event, matching the PGA Tour record for victories in a single tournament.
Woods finished at 15-under, seven strokes clear of defending champion Keegan Bradley and Sweden’s Henrik Stenson in Akron, Ohio.
“I don’t know what it is,” said Woods about the Firestone layout.
“It just fits my eye, I’ve felt comfortable here. For some reason it just comes out and I put it together.”
The victory was Woods’ 79th on the PGA Tour drawing him within three of Sam Snead’s record 82 triumphs.
Woods now has a total of five wins this year – a feat he has accomplished for the 10th time in his career.
The world number one has also won 18 World Golf Championship series events in just 42 starts.
“The total body of work is pretty good,” said Woods.
Tiger Woods holds the 2013 Bridgestone Invitational trophy (Credit: Eoin Clarke/www.golffile.ie)
“One of the things I’m proud of, obviously, is how many times I’ve won, plus won World Golf Championships and how many years I’ve won five or more tournaments in a season. What is it, like eight or nine times? Ten? That’s not bad, either.”
A second round 61 on Friday set the world number one up perfectly, turning this tournament in to a one-man show.
A third round 68 kept the challengers at bay with Woods enjoying a seven shot lead moving into Sunday.
Woods elected to play conservatively in the final round, the driver remaining firmly in his bag throughout the round with irons and his three wood his only weapons of choice off the tee.
“I was just trying to make pars,” said Woods.
Out in level-par 35 to maintain his overnight lead of seven shots, Woods recorded his only birdie of the day at the par-four 10th, sinking a seven-footer to briefly stretch his advantage to nine strokes.
“This was a perfect day to protect. As blustery as it was, it was going to be really hard for someone to shoot 62 or 63.”
“If I didn’t give any shots away and played my game and shot even par or better, I’d force these guys to go and shoot something super low on a golf course that wasn’t going to give it up under these conditions.”
The 37-year-old will go to the US PGA Championship at Oak Hill, which starts on Thursday, knowing it is the 20th time he has won in his last start before a major and he has gone on to win that major four times.
Woods had already won both the Bridgestone and the PGA Championship in the same year three times in his career (2000, 2006, 2007).
Adam Scott finished off with a 71 to be two-under and the best of the Australians in a tie for 14th.
Australia’s Jason Day finished at eight-over in a tie for 53rd in the 73-man field. Brett Rumford fired a final round 70, his best round of the week to have him tied 63rd at 12-under with 2012 Australian PGA Champion Daniel Popovic firing a final round 82 to finish at the back of the field at 34-over.